HRH The Duke of Gloucester visited Rothamsted Research in Harpenden, Hertfordshire on Monday the 5th April. Rothamsted is one of the world's leading agricultural research institutes. The Duke learnt about its past achievements and ongoing activities. He was shown around the Institute's state-of-the-art laboratories and heard about experimental programmes from the Institute's Director, Professor Ian Crute. The Duke was also introduced to some of Rothamsted's scientific staff and the Mayor of St Albans and the Mayor of Harpenden.
Rothamsted International recently welcomed Dr John Agbenin of Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria as its 100th charitable fellow. This small charity brings scientists from developing countries to the UK for scientific training at Rothamsted that they can use to improve the sustainability of agriculture in their home country.
"This is a really happy landmark for us, which we could not have reached without the generosity of the local community, "says charity director Dr Judy Mann. "Over our first ten years, visitors from all over the developing world have benefited from this scheme."
Research just published in Nature (1) by the scientific consortium behind the GM farm scale trials (2) concludes that the comparative benefits for biodiversity from GM herbicide tolerant (GMHT) maize are likely to be reduced but not eliminated by the forthcoming EU withdrawal of triazine weed killers.
Notes to Editors
The recently renamed Rothamsted Research Association (RRA - formerly Arable Research Institute Association) has decided that its dialogue with the farming industry for 2004 will be conducted through a close working relationship with the HGCA and partnerships with other research organisations. Rothamsted Research is committed to enhancing its communications with the arable farming industry and is seeking effective vehicles to transfer knowledge of the latest research findings as well as receiving feedback on future prospects.
The collection has been established at Rothamsted to conserve and study diverse types of willow used for basket making, cricket bats and more recently green bio-energy fuel. "These aphids can grow to a quarter of an inch long, making them a giant among aphids" says scientist Dr Ian Shield. "They have formed huge colonies on some of our willow species and we don't yet know how much harm they will do".
Rothamsted Research is part of the scientific consortium that has carried out the farm-scale evaluations of GM, herbicide tolerant crops. The first results from this study were published on Thursday 16th October
The team at Rothamsted Research that bring you the annual BioMarket event and the year round interactive technology transfer data base on BioProduct.info are now planning the provision of these services through to the end of 2006. The submission to the European Commission has been shortlisted for part-funding as a Specific Support Activity under FP6 and contract negotiation have been initiated. The competition for funding was especially demanding and having been chosen the team is determined to make the next 4 events even better than before.
Rothamsted scientists won a Silver-Gilt medal for their exhibit at last week's Chelsea Flower Show. The exhibit, in association with the British Beekeepers Association, was entitled "The bees needs" and highlighted the decline of bees in the UK due to land use changes that are depriving them of food and nest sites.