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September 2019

NIAB – Advances in grow lighting – Thursday 17th Oct 2019

By Industry News

Advances in Grow Lighting: Industry Workshop. Thursday 17th October 2019.

NIAB working in conjunction with the AHDB, is hosting a unique one-day horticulture lighting workshop that will take place at its award-winning conference Centre on the outskirts of Cambridge. This grower-focused event offers a platform for growers of all protected crops to engage and discuss the latest lighting related products and innovations in horticulture lighting. The day will be a combination of product demonstrations from the following confirmed exhibitors:

  • Signify
  • Heliospectra
  • Valoya
  • KropTek
  • GNUK
  • Ceravision
  • INDO lighting
  • Tungsram

and the following leading industry speakers.

  • Erik Runkle of Michigan State University – “Considerations and U.S. perspectives when selecting an LED fixture for greenhouse applications”
  • Stuart Mucklejohn of Ceravision – “All light is not the same”
  • Dirk Ludolph of LWK Niedersachsen – “LED light for ornamentals – more than fairy lights”
  • Dr Gareth John of LIA – “Lighting systems and operator safety”

Neil Bragg, the chair of the event, says, “Innovations in lighting for glasshouse crops are moving at pace. The meeting on the 17th Oct is designed to impart factual information on what others are doing such as Erik from the States and Dirk from Germany. Also, there are basic issues still to be covered such as what exactly a system may be outputting and additionally what health and safety concerns are raised. In the afternoon we have deliberately gathered various companies together so specific setup can be demonstrated and we will have mobile measuring equipment available such that specific light spectra outputs can be seen from different units at bench height.”

Many thanks for your support


2019 Onion and Carrot Conference

By Industry News

The Biennial UK Onion & Carrot Conference will take place on Wednesday 20th November 2019 at the Cambridge Corn Exchange.

The iconic Cambridge venue will host the well-established conference and trade show catering for all those involved in production or allied to these significant industries from home and abroad.  The main sponsors for the 2019 event are Bayer and Elsoms/ Bejo.

There will be a series of technical and marketing talks relevant to both crop sectors crop sectors, with a break out session in the afternoon where crop specific agronomy presentations will be given.

Opening the conference will be Allan Wilkinson, Head of Agrifoods, HSBC presenting “Financing the Fresh Produce Industry”. The conference programme will also feature Andrea Graham, the author of the NFU Future of Food report Dan Parker, who has spearheaded the Veg Power Campaign will be updating the audience on the success and the future of fresh produce advertising and Anna Jones, founder of Just Farmers and former presenter on BBC 4’s farming today will be presenting

The programme of technical presentations will include talks on the future of weed control; herbicides and alternative control measures.  An update on the AHDB Horticulture project looking at the impact white rot and fusarium has on Carrots will be given by Jon Clarkson, Warwick University. These will be accompanied by talks on Emerger, the INNOVEG project and SCEPTREplus.

The Celebratory Conference Dinner will be held on the evening of 20th November at the Corn Exchange.  John Bentley, former English International Rugby player, will entertain guests following a drinks reception and three course meal with wine.

To register for your delegate tickets, evening ticket or trade stand please visit


This event is generously being sponsored by Bayer and Elsoms Seeds/ Bejo, other category sponsors are as follows; Post Conference Drinks Reception- Bedfordshire Growers, Evening Drinks Reception- Hazera and Evening Wine Sponsorship- Moulton Bulb Co.

There are still opportunities to sponsor parts of this event, if you would like further information please contact  



FPJ LIVE – The UK Fruit & Vegetable Conference and Awards

By Industry News

One event, two days, three great stages

FPJ Live is taking the traditional conference format to the next level with a content-packed showcase of fresh produce innovation

There are less than four weeks to go to FPJ Live 2019, so now is the time to secure your place at this showcase of fresh produce excellence.

FPJ Live is returning with its popular TV show-style format, combined with an all-new multi-stage offer giving something for everyone in an exciting, fast-moving programme.

Tickets include free entry to the UK Fruit & Vegetable Awards Social on 7 October, where food, drink and entertainment are provided as the backdrop to the revealing of this year’s winners. Voted for across 12 categories by FPJ readers, awards are presented to companies and individuals who have done outstanding work over the past year.

Packed programme

On 8 October, FPJ Live kicks off with a session looking at politics and trade. Trade body leaders including British Growers CEO Jack Ward and AHDB Horticulture chair Hayley Campbell-Gibbons will discuss the big issues facing the industry, before bosses from Wealmoor, The Orchard Fruit Company and Angus Soft Fruits talk about new developments at their businesses.

Following a networking break, the focus turns to marketing and retail. Former L’Oréal and Diageo marketing chief Hugh Pile, now of Blue Skies, will give his expert analysis of branding in fresh produce, while Veg Power’s Dan Parker will unveil exclusive results of the phenomenally successful fresh produce campaign.

Kantar’s consumer insight director Joe Shaw Roberts will present the latest trends affecting the retail sector, before IPL managing director Mike Snell takes to the stage to discuss the Asda buying arm’s work in fresh produce, giving his view of the evolution of retail and the current trends facing the market.

At midday, the pace switches with an in-depth personal and professional interview with Riverford founder and organic pioneer Guy Watson in FPJ Life Stories, sponsored by MorePeople.

After lunch, wholesale and foodservice will be up for discussion with top guests including Paul Walker of Spitalfields Market Tenants Association, Simon Martin of The Food Heroes, top chef Pierre Koffmann, healthy eating campainer Melissa Hemsley, Natures Choice’s Vernon Mascarenhas and Jess Latchford from Waste Knot.

Fruity endurance athlete Sally Orange will outline her remarkable and unique story, before the event concludes with an in-depth interview with NFU president Minette Batters.

Delegates have the chance to choose from a range of content, all within the same room. Throughout the day a second stage, The Big Debate, will put the spotlight on topics including Adding Nutrition To Fresh Produce, The Consumer View and The Next Generation, with speakers including Nuffield scholar Barbara Bray, NFU chief horticulture adviser Lee Abbey, NextGen Fruit Group chair Ben Bardsley and LEAF chief executive Caroline Drummond.

During networking breaks, Fruitnet’s video series #freshtalks will record live interviews, which delegates can watch first hand on a third stage.

Fast-paced and interactive

The fast-paced event, supported by headline sponsor NFU, will feature a mixture of chat, debate, multimedia and presentations, and new this year, the opportunity to supply live comments to be read out as the day progresses.

FPJ editor Michael Barker said: “This year’s event is the most ambitious we’ve ever attempted, offering multiple streams of fantastic content in a fast-paced format we hope people will love. We want this to become a central meeting point for the industry and an unmissable part of the fresh produce calendar, so I would urge everyone to sign up and be a part of the conversation.”

Tickets to FPJ Live and the Awards Social are some of the most affordable across the UK conference calendar, offering incredible value for money and unrivalled networking opportunities. The event attracts senior executives, managing directors and buyers from across the supply chain, from producers and growers to retailers, wholesalers and associated industries.

This year’s event takes place at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry on 7-8 October, and discounts are available for groups of two or more delegates. For more information and to book, see




Scholarship Opportunities – Women & Leadership Program

By Industry News

Funding of up to £1,000 for farming sector women available

Women & Leadership International is administering a national initiative to support the development of female leaders across the UK’s farming

The campaign is providing women with grants of up to £1,000 to enable participation in one of two leadership development programs: Leading Edge (for junior and aspiring leaders and managers) and Executive Ready (for mid-level leaders and managers).

Expressions of Interest
Find out more and register your interest by completing the Expression of Interest form here prior to Wednesday, 16th October:  



FareShare Funding Opportunities

By Industry News

Could your surplus food be a lifeline for charities?

Globally, one third of the food we produce is wasted. When you consider the resources involved in growing, preparing and transporting the food, that figure is even more shocking. Until now, there’s been very little incentive for growers to offer their surplus food to charities

because the cost of harvesting and transporting unwanted crops left them out of pocket. That inevitably meant it was often seen as easier to plough crops that could have been eaten by people back into the ground or send them to anaerobic digestion than to give them to those in need.  But, with a growing ‘zero waste’ movement, and increasing pressure from consumers, growers and food businesses are waking up to the problem and pledging to take action – redistributing their edible surplus to frontline charities where it can do the most good.

FareShare is the UK’s largest food redistribution charity, taking in-date surplus from growers, packers, manufacturers, suppliers and retailers and the hospitality sector and redistributing it through a network of 11,000 frontline organisations, such as homeless hostels, school breakfast clubs, food banks and hospices. Jo Dyson, FareShare’s Head of Food, at FareShare, says: “In five years the amount of food we’ve delivered to charities has tripled reflecting the increasing priority that many businesses are placing on tackling food waste in the most socially responsible way. We really appreciate the support we receive from industry, however there is still a lot to do.”

Despite the organisation’s size and reach, FareShare is currently only re-distributing eight per cent of the UK’s surplus and as Jo Dyson explains: “According to WRAP, over three tonnes of food is wasted before it even leaves UK farms, or is used to feed animals rather than people. Assuming two thirds of this could have been eaten, that’s enough to create over four and a half billion meals for UK citizens each year…a staggering figure.”

FareShare works with more than 500 companies across the supply chain – from growers to packers and food processers, hauliers, food retailers and hospitality chains, and big brands to small, independent producers.

“Surplus is inevitable, but food waste doesn’t have to be,” says Jo Dyson. “We have 21 regional centres across the UK – which puts us at a huge advantage because we can quickly and safely transport surplus food into our network and redistribute it onwards to frontline charities supporting those in need.”

Crucially, previous disincentives for growers to ‘do the right thing’ with their surplus have now been removed. This year DEFRA announced a new fund which aims to make diverting surplus food to charities cost-neutral. As a recipient of the grant funding, FareShare is now able to compensate growers for releasing more surplus food through its Surplus with Purpose Fund . This fund offsets any additional cost barriers – for example labour costs, additional processing costs or the expense of packaging and storage. Additionally, FareShare will work with producers to make food redistribution as time efficient as possible.

So what are the benefits for farmers? “As well as helping businesses to reach their sustainability targets, redistributing food to charities is a great way to engage customers and boost staff morale,” says Jo Dyson, FareShare’s Head of Food. “When you do the right thing, word gets out….and in this case it benefits everyone.”


The £3m FareShare Surplus with Purpose Fund is available for a limited time only. To find out more visit or call 02070648911