ASA Conference to explore the role of science in driving innovation and addressing challenges in agri-food

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Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue(R), ASA President, Dr. Anne Marie Butler(C) and Michael Berkery, Chairman FBD Trust(L)

The 79th annual Agricultural Science Association conference will take place on Friday 10th September 2021, live-streamed from the Killashee Hotel in Naas. This year’s event entitled “Science: Driving Innovation & Addressing Challenges in Agri-Food” will explore the important role that science has to play in the future of the industry.

The conference, once again kindly sponsored by FBD Insurance, will be officially opened by Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue and hosted by Agri-Broadcaster, Damien O’Reilly. The event will offer insights and contributions from national and international global experts in agri-food.

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Speaking at the launch of the conference Dr. Anne Marie Butler, ASAPresident said, “We are thrilled to announce a list of both national and international speakers who will contribute to lively discussions on the challenges currently facing our industry and the opportunity presented by scientific advancements and new technologies. Our contributors have broad and varied backgrounds in the agricultural sector and will offer a range of perspectives and opinions as the industry shapes its future.”

Among the international speakers contributing to the event are Dr. Harry Clarke, Director of the New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre (NZAGRC). Harry is one of New Zealand’s foremost authorities on agricultural greenhouse gases and their quantification and mitigation; Dr Alison Van Eenennaam, Animal Genomics and Biotechnology Specialist, University of California, Davis, a past recipient of the CAST 2014 Borlaug and the ASAS 2019 Rockefeller Prentice Award in Animal Breeding and Genetics; and, Michael Scannell, Deputy Director General for Agriculture and Rural Development, EU Commission. Michael is an expert on European agriculture, international trade and food safety.

Alongside the global perspectives offered by the international speakers, the event will feature contributions from Irish industry leaders including Professor Frank O’Mara, director designate, Teagasc and Bill Callanan, Chief Inspector, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. Attendees will also hear from some of Ireland’s leading agri-food entrepreneurs including Ger Cleary, Glenisk, Matt Foley, Kilbush Nurseries and Nick Cotter, Cotter Agritech.

Michael Berkery, Chairman, FBD Trust said, “FBD Insurance is delighted to continue our longstanding support for the ASA Conference. Over the years the conference has become a force for driving innovation and knowledge sharing within the agriculture sector and we are proud to support this annual event and the work of the ASA.”

The conference will also feature a number of exciting announcements including the announcement of the recipients of the inaugural ASA FBD Fellowship and the Distinguished Member Award which honours an ASA Member who has made a significant contribution to the Irish agri-food industry in the course of their career. 

The event will commence at 10.00am and concludes at 12.45pm. Attendance is free but attendees must pre-register on www.asaireland.ie in advance. For further updates please follow @ASAIreland on social media.