East Anglia: Crop advisers team up as Apex Agronomy

A NEW independent agronomy group has been established to help East Anglian farmers to access the latest unbiased technical advice on all aspects of crop production.

Apex Agronomy, based in Framlingham, has been founded by independent agronomists Robert Hurren, Mike Warner, John Tunaley, John Clarke and Ruth Naud�, who collectively advise farmers producing more than 100,000 acres of combinable crops, sugar beet, vining peas and potatoes across the region.

Each of the founders has at least 15 years’ experience of helping farmers to contend with the challenges of fluctuating markets and weather patterns, and all are members of the Association of Independent Crop Consultants (AICC).

Mr Hurren said the trend towards larger but fewer manufacturers and distributors had reduced the choice available to growers in purchasing crop inputs, and information targeted at farmers was often marketing-led rather than technically-based.

“We aim to be at the forefront of agronomic innovation and being part of a formal group will give us an identity as well as providing us with greater access to the key influencers within the agricultural industry,” he said.

“It will also give us the ability to conduct our own farm-scale trials to evaluate new innovations, which should enable us to dissect some of the marketing jargon and get to the real technical foundations.”

The Apex team is also keen to encourage young agronomists into the independent sector and has taken on Scott Martin as a trainee.

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“Succession is a concern in the field of independent agronomy and we believe that being part of a strong group gives us the ability to take on trainees as well as other more established agronomists,” added Mr Hurren.