Nine new panel members joined AHDB for a three-year term in January. They will help to represent growers’ view and interests and support the delivery of work to boost productivity in horticulture.
The new members of the soft fruit, protected edible and mushroom, hardy nursery stock and field vegetable panels will also play a role in shaping new research projects that will aim to keep the UK horticulture industry resilient through the potentially turbulent years ahead.
Key priorities for all of the sector panels will be developing integrated pest management strategies and supporting industry to manage the challenge of access to affordable, effective labour.
Steve Tones, strategy direct for AHDB Horticulture, said: “There are likely to be challenges ahead for UK horticulture with the uncertainty around our withdrawal from the EU and the continued non-renewal of key plant protection products and actives.
“Having the voice of the industry represented by innovative growers, who are passionate about keeping the industry moving forward, is critical in helping us get the best return in investment for our levy payers and ensuring businesses are fit for the future.”
Mark Yates, Wyeplants and new panel member for hardy nursery stock, said: “I joined as a panel member in order to have some influence on how resources are allocated to meet the most relevant challenges for both our own business and the sector as a whole.
“The industry will face many challenges over the next few years and AHDB will have an important role in research and development in order to help keep businesses competitive in the market place.”
Trelawney Greaves, P J Stirling and new soft fruit panel member, said: "Some of the biggest challenges facing the industry over the next few years will be the shortage of labour and loss of pesticide approvals. One of our priorities needs to be increased knowledge and understanding of the best way to use bio fungicides and bio insecticides that will better protect our crops in the absence of many chemical pesticide products."
Positions are still available for some of the sector panels. To find out more about your new panel members and how to get in touch, or to apply for a position, visit: horticulture.ahdb.org.uk/panel
- Philip Langley, Sandfields Farms Ltd
- David Bond, J Bond & Son
- Carolyn Coxe, Pollybell Farms
Hardy Nursery Stock:
- Mark Yates, Wyeplants Ltd
Protected Edible and Mushroom:
- Matthew Simon, Glinwell Marketing
- Ian Hammond, Valefresco
- Kimberly Dawson, G’s Fresh Mushrooms
- Gerard Olivier, Edward Vinson Ltd
- Trelawney Greaves, P J Stirling Ltd