15 June 2017
Dr. John Gilbert, FoodLife International Ltd (Turkey)

Cereals 2017 which is a major agricultural show held annually in the UK, provided a unique opportunity for two of the MyToolBox work package leaders to have face-to-face interactions with UK farmers. Harper Adams University, as a project partner, kindly incorporated a MyToolBox banner outside its tented display area, and with a key position along a main thoroughfare the ‘REDUCE MYCOTOXINS, INCREASE PROFITS’ roll-up caught the eye of some of the 25,000 predominantly farmer participants during the 2-days event on June 14/15th 2017. In discussions it was obvious that farmers had very different levels of awareness of mycotoxins in their cereals, but all were interested in access to tools to improve their decision making abilities, being acutely aware of the importance of fungicide spraying at the optimum time.  Apart from the developments in classical farm machinery, technological innovations whether from the use of drones in precision farming and robotic spraying of crops to developments in DNA technology to improve cereal varieties, there are clear indications that farmers are very open to the use of smart tools and MyToolBox will have an important part to play in future cereal farming.