Forum to explore role of science in food production

Key figures from agriculture and horticulture will debate the place of new technologies in fresh produce production at October's World Fruit & Vegetable Show.

Field of cabbages - photo: HW
Field of cabbages - photo: HW

The debate, The Appliance of Science, will cover the impact of technology on the sector, particularly with regard to providing sufficient food for a fast growing population in a sustainable manner, at the right quality and at affordable prices.

Speakers will discuss issues including the rising cost of food production, pesticide use, genetic modification of fruit and vegetables, and organics. 

Peter Melchett, policy director of the Soil Association, which promotes organic farming, will start the discussion with responses from Professor Greg Tucker from the University of Nottingham, Dr Helen Ferrier, chief science and regulatory affairs adviser of the National Farmers Union, and Alan Malcolm, CEO of the Institute of Biology.

The Appliance of Science session, just part of a wide ranging forum programme over two days, begins at 10.30am on Thursday, October 9th, the second day of the World Fruit & Vegetable Show.

Other speakers include Nigel Jenney, CEO of the Fresh Produce Consortium, John Giles, divisional director of Promar International, Gerald Scott, Professor Emeritus in Chemistry and Polymer Science of Aston University; and Kenneth Hayes of the Soil Association.

There will also be a keynote speech by Richard Hurst, chairman of the horticulture board for the NFU.

The 2008 World Fruit & Vegetable Show itself takes place at the ExCeL Exhibition Centre in London on October 8th and 9th.


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