Thursday, 9 August 2018
The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) has announced four potato-focused appointments to join the newly formed Arable Knowledge Exchange team.
Bringing together a wider range of expertise for the industry, AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds and AHDB Potatoes Knowledge Exchange have united to create a single Arable Team.
Graham Bannister has been promoted to Senior Knowledge Exchange (KE) Manager, while both Amber Cottingham and Dr Anne Stone have moved roles internally to KE Manager and Knowledge Transfer (KT) Manager respectively.
Kathryn Hales will join the team as KT Officer upon finishing her AHDB funded PhD in October. Anne’s existing role of KE Manager for the West is currently being sought and will take personnel in Potatoes KE to seven. This is in addition to the further resource and scope offered by the full arable team.
Head of Arable KE Tim Isaac said: ““We are delighted to offer potato growers increased provision with the appointment of these roles. The sector will also benefit from the continuity provided by the fact that three of the four appointments are promotions or internal moves.
“Anne Stone will remain in her role in the West for the remainder of this growing season, again to provide continuity, as we continue to expand and improve on the service we provide.”
Familiar face in the East Midlands
Amber Cottingham has taken up the role of KE Manager for the East Midlands region, and joins the team from AHDB Potatoes Market Intelligence (MI). Prior to joining AHDB, Amber was part of the graduate programme at Branston Ltd.
Amber said “I have been fortunate enough to see much of the potato industry, from field to supermarket shelf and beyond. I have seen a lot of exciting progress and development throughout the supply chain.
“I am looking forward to helping levy payers implement new research on farms, and demonstrating the link between best practice and the end-customer.”
Amber is available to visit growers and businesses across the region. She will be at the Strategic Potato Farm North field walk in North Lincolnshire on Thursday 16 August, or contactable on Amber.Cottingham@ahdb.org.uk or 07815 001462.
New team supported by additional Knowledge Transfer provision
Anne Stone and Kathryn Hales will commence their new roles in October. These KT positions will support the five potatoes focused KE Managers in the regions by channelling the results of AHDB’s multi-million pound research programme into a format for use in a commercial farm environment.
Tim Isaac said: “Anne and Kathryn have an in-depth knowledge of plant pathology, gained during study for their PhDs, which makes them ideal for KT roles.
Anne’s experience of working with potato growers in the West over the last three seasons, and her existing relationships with our KE team will help us focus research results into useable ideas.”
The regional KE team in England & Wales will report to Graham Bannister, who maintains his role as KE Manager for the North of England. He joined AHDB a year ago, securing a new Strategic Farm for the North during that time.
Tim said: “Graham has worked in potatoes for over a decade and his experience of running teams in the agricultural sector will be invaluable.