Published on 4th September 2019
Guild members have an exclusive opportunity to see how Syngenta’s famed Jealott’s Hill research station is contributing to advances in worldwide agricultural research and development.
Jealott's Hill is near Bracknell, Berkshire. The members-only press day will take place on 4 October, 2019.
Recognised as a global centre of excellence for agricultural productivity, employing more than 850 people and managing bioscience projects with a combined total of more than £1bn, the research centre is one of the true jewels of the UK’s renowned science and technology base.
The invitation follows Syngenta’s recent partnership agreement with the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists and comes at a point where Syngenta is evolving its approach to Research & Development to support a commitment ‘to accelerate innovation in a changing world’.
“While UK agriculture clearly benefits from this research being undertaken in the UK, the resource within Jealott’s Hill provides the expertise and reputation in the core scientific skills required to address the global challenges facing the agricultural sector,” says Jim Morton, external relations and partnership manager for Syngenta.
“Housing a number of individual centres of chemical and biological scientific excellence, the site is at the centre of our worldwide R&D activities,” he says.
That’s because Jealott’s Hill is not just Syngenta’s largest site in the UK, but the global agri-tech company’s largest science and research development centre anywhere in the world.
From its location near Reading, Berkshire, it’s responsible for nearly a third of all the collaborative research projects undertaken by Syngenta and provides the sole focus for the company’s global herbicide research.
Other activities at the site, which celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2018, involve the discovery of new active substances, formulation technologies, product safety and research into seeds, particularly wheat.
Academic partners in the UK include the universities nearby at Reading and Oxford, Cambridge University and Imperial College, and leading agricultural research organisations such as Rothamsted and John Innes.
“The universities lead on aspects of the fundamental science,” Jim explains, “which we complete with our own understanding of agronomy and the global marketplace.
“This collaborative approach enables us to develop innovative solutions to farmers’ challenges, wherever they are in the world.
“Our key themes at Jealott’s Hill are sustainability, precision, and – excitingly – understanding the opportunities afforded by digital farming,” Jim notes.
A maximum of ten places are available for the press day, to include interested IFAJ members as well as BGAJ members. This will give those attending the best experience, and opportunities for useful discussion and one-to-one questioning.
Former BGAJ Chairman and current IFAJ Treasurer Adrian Bell has been working with Syngenta over the last 12 months to secure the agreement.
“While Syngenta’s partnership brings much-needed funding to support IFAJ’s work and expansion across the EMEA region, it’s exciting that it also gives members around the world the opportunity to engage with Syngenta through events like this.
“I’m particularly pleased that this first IFAJ-Syngenta event will take place in the UK, handing BGAJ members a natural advantage and a tremendous opportunity to seize the chance to use the visit to demonstrate the vibrancy and strength inherent in the UK’s agritech and bioscience sectors.”
If this event proves a success, Syngenta hopes to offer IFAJ members further visits either to Jealott’s Hill or one of its other R&D centres worldwide.
Interested in attending? Please contact Adrian Bell, IFAJ’s Treasurer and partnership manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org, before Friday, 20 September.