There is a need to improve agricultural productivity in the coming century to ensure food supplies for a global population predicted to reach 9 billion by 2050, equating to a need to increase production by at least 50%. This second 'green revolution' is set in a context of climate change, industrialisation and changing consumer demands in emerging economies, increasing use of renewable feedstocks for biorefining applications, limited natural resources and rising energy costs, and pressure to reduce emissions from the sector.
New Paradigms for Crop and Soil Management Workshop
Understanding the relationships between crops and ecosystems is becoming an increasingly important research and development priority to establish sustainable crop management practices - in particular, the move from managing soils using chemical inputs to the use of biologically-based improvement strategies is a rapidly emerging challenge. KTN's Plant Sector has established a forum to enhance knowledge exchange in the area of crop and soil interactions.
As a first activity, the "New Paradigms for Crop and Soil Management" workshop was held at The Linnean Society of London on 9th February 2011. The workshop brought together around 90 key UK and European stakeholders from the research-base, industry, government departments, policy makers and funders, growers and end-users of crop products, to learn and discuss the challenges facing the agriculture sector. A series of presentations provided workshop delegates with an opportunity to learn about some of the key issues driving the need for change in soil management.