Cereals 2021 returns to Lincolnshire fields

Cereals 2021 is on target to open its doors to physical visitors on 9-10 June this year, following a series of meetings with farmers, exhibitors and health and safety advisers.

After a year of online-only events due to Covid-19, Cereals is set to become Comexposium’s first physical European event of 2021, when it returns to Lincolnshire in June. “All of our farmers and exhibitors are so keen to get back out into the field and meet real people again,” says event director Alli McEntyre. “The site is drilled up and growing nicely, and with our new farmer advisory board we are now formulating the seminar programmes and live action exhibits.”

Of course, the safety of visitors and exhibitors remains paramount, so the team is following the latest health and safety advice, with Covid measures likely to include social distancing, hand sanitisers, open air theatres, and more entry points to reduce queues.

“We will update exhibitors about our biosecurity plans in early March and early June,” says Ms McEntyre. “Although navigating the site might feel a little different, we are extremely positive about our ability to deliver a vibrant and bio-secure outdoor event.”

Following the success of its November webinar: ‘The Q&A Edition’; delivered by farmers for farmers, the Cereals team invited 16 arable producers from around the UK to join its new advisory board. Encompassing a range of farming styles – from organic and regenerative to high output, precision-driven units – the board will ensure that Cereals continues to deliver practical, relevant and innovative content for its visitors.

“We have now held our first exhibitor and farmer advisory board meetings which, alongside other meetings with industry stakeholders, is helping us to form a strong theme for the event, with features and seminars that promise to inspire,” says Ms McEntyre. “We are committed to having more farmer representation among our speakers, and to ensure utmost editorial integrity in our seminar programmes.”

New features this year will include the Market and Farm Diversification theatre – dedicated to grain marketing topics and diversification advice – and the Sustainable Solutions theatre in association with the National Federation of Young Farmers Clubs. This will focus on sustainability in all of its guises, from financially strong family farm structures to environmentally friendly practices.

“Although we did introduce these new elements to the online Cereals LIVE in June this year, it will be really exciting to have the physical versions on-site in June 2021,” says Ms McEntyre. Other new features include the Innovation and Tech demo ring – which will have working demonstrations of the latest novel equipment – and a practical drainage area.

A perennial favourite, the Syngenta Sprays & Sprayers Arena will be back with a more challenging track to reflect real farm conditions, while the NIAB Soil Pit, crop plots and working machinery demonstrations will offer plenty to see and discuss. “We’ve even got a new 4×4 driving track, where visitors can get behind the wheel of the latest off-road vehicles and put them through their paces,” she adds. “Of course, if national health measures change, we will deliver the event online again, which we did with such success in June and November 2020. But we are very hopeful and looking forward to getting back out in the field and meeting everyone face-to-face again.”