A new event organised by a horticultural technology centre in North Yorkshire will highlight the opportunities for the future of horticulture in post-Brexit Britain.
The one-off conference entitled The Responsibilities of Independence - An Information Exchange on the Options Towards a Plant Health and Crop Protection Strategy for Horticulture Post-Brexit will take place on Tuesday, December 6, at Stockbridge Technology Centre (STC) near Cawood, Selby. The event is free to all.
Visitors will be offered the chance to exchange ideas and solutions around the topics of new pests and diseases entering the UK, and pesticide availability and registration under UK law.
The event is open to any businesses and individuals connected to the UK horticultural industry, said Graham Ward OBE, Chief Executive of Stockbridge Technology Centre.
"We as an organisation are thinking about the future of our industry, and we're expecting a lot of discussion and general ideas to take forward. This is an opportunity for growers and others to hear and comment on their concerns and aspirations for a future plant health and crop protection strategy," he added.
"Brexit means that the UK will issue import licences and set its own rules for plant health. We want to encourage people to think about using our borders to maximise income for the UK horticultural sector."
The morning session - the present situation and potential regulatory options for the future - will be chaired by Graham with speakers including UK Chief Plant Health Officer, Nicola Spence; NFU senior plant health adviser, Emma Hamer; Dave Bench from HSE and Steve Tones, strategy director for horticulture at Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board.
The afternoon session, chaired by Sarah Dawson from the NFU and National Board for Horticulture, will hear from growing industry representatives including Tim Edwards, managing director of Boningale Nurseries, Derek Hargreaves and others who will share their industry concerns and aspirations for the future. The event is sponsored by Crombie Wilkinson Solicitors.
Robin Batchelor, Crop Health and Protection (CHAP) CEO, will also give an overview of the Innovation Centre for CHAP, which STC is associated with.
"We may look to hold other events as the Brexit negotiations continue to progress, and new opportunities presents themselves," Graham said.
Tickets can be booked at www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/brexit-the-responsibilities-of-independence-tickets-28724898946?aff=es2.
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