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This year's Forum has been revamped

This year's Forum will focus on key areas of focus for a diversifying crop protection industry, providing attendees with insight into the latest developments that could impact their organisation’s strategy.


13:00 Registration

13:30 The Agribusiness Market

Agricultural market drivers and the crop protection and seed sectors: the outlook for 2019-2020. 
Agribusiness Intelligence’s experts set the scene with a macro-economic backdrop, global farming outlook, commodity supply and demand, and then focusing on crop protection and seed market drivers across trade, regulation and technology.

Presentation 1: Global agricultural commodity outlook by Tom Scott (Global Director, Agribusiness Consulting)

Presentation 2: Global crop protection industry outlook by Gautam Sirur (Principal Analyst, Phillips McDougall)

Panel discussion (moderated by Agrow’s Editor-in Chief, Sanjiv Rana)

Panelists: Markus Heldt (retired President of BASF Agricultural Solutions), Tom Scott, Gautam Sirur

  • How has the market developed in 2019? Will the growth observed in 2018 continue?
  • What are the factors impacting sowing patterns and agricultural commodity prices?
  • What is the prognosis for glyphosate?
  • What will be the impact on the market of new technologies and shifts in R&D trends.


14:40 Regulations and Politics.

Market disruption from regulation and political manoeuvring: adjusting to turbulence

Agribusiness and market experts discuss the impact of: politicisation of EU regulations; US legal cases and the impact on glyphosate and other active ingredients; the US-China trade war and the impact of environmental regulatory actions on Chinese manufacturing and prices.

Presentation 1: EU regulatory issues: an industry viewpoint by Euros Jones (Partner, ERM)

Presentation 2: Round up of US legal issues, US/China dispute, Chinese manufacturing and exports by Sanjiv Rana (Editor-in-Chief, Agrow)

Panel discussion (moderated by Alan Bullion, Agribusiness Intelligence)

Panelists: Anthea McIntyre (MEP – Member of European Parliament), Mike Carroll (Principal Consultant, TSG Consulting), Euros Jones and Sanjiv Rana

  • What is the impact of public opinion and politics on regulatory decisions – in the EU and other jurisdictions? How to tackle that? What will be the impact of Brexit on EU regulations?
  • What is the impact of US legal cases and moves by some EU member states on the future of glyphosate?
  • How is restructuring within the Chinese industry impacting global agrochemical markets?


15:45 Break

16:15 The Future


Precision and digital agriculture: from concept to reality

Industry experts touch upon all aspects of precision and digital agriculture from the hardware involved (drones, farm equipment, swarm robotics) to software (digital platforms and apps).

Presentation 1: Precision Agriculture: Delivering Value by John Rauber (Director, Washington Affairs – John Deere)

Presentation 2: Field Innovation - How Technology is Transforming the Future of Agriculture by Justin Gong (Co-founder/Vice-President/CMO, XAG)

Presentation 3: The Potential for Robots on Arable Farms by Prof James Lowenberg-DeBoer (Harper Adams University)

Panel discussion (moderated by Sanjiv Rana)

Panelists: John Rauber, Justin Gong, Anthea McIntyre

  • What are the principal drivers for adoption, from regulatory pressure to sustainability and industry consolidation?
  • How quickly does the benefit translate into a return on investment, and what does a realistic business model look like?
  • What are the knock-on effects for the rest of industry, including agrochemical manufacturers?

17:15 Networking drinks

Speakers and Panelists

Markus profile pictureMarkus Heldt 

Former President of BASF Agricultural Solutions

"Farmers have been forced to change more radically and more rapidly than any other industry. They care passionately about nature, the land and their legacy. And they are great entrepreneurs." Markus Heldt should know. Raised on a small family farm in Germany, he helped shape the agricultural industry on three continents. Roles in fungicide sales and marketing were followed by senior agricultural management positions at Shell and American Cyanamid. Markus joined BASF in 2000, leading the agricultural businesses in parts of Western Europe, Latin America and North America, before his appointment in 2009 as President of BASF Agricultural Solutions. In August 2018, Markus led the division, now the world’s fourth largest player in seeds and crop protection, into a new era through the acquisition of businesses and assets from Bayer. After almost forty years in the agricultural industry, Markus began his retirement in July 2019.


Anthea profile pictureAnthea McIntyre, MEP 

Member of the European Parliament 

Anthea McIntyre has been MEP for the West Midlands since 2011 and was re-elected in the 2019 European elections. Anthea is the Party’s spokesman in the European Parliament on the environment and on agriculture and rural affairs. She has drafted Parliamentary reports on subjects including smart farming, encouraging entrepreneurs and re-shoring jobs, and piloted legislation through the Parliament to protect bio security and prevent the import and spread of deadly plant pests. Following a controversial report published by the Parliament's Temporary Committee on Pesticides, she has published her own analysis of the evidence it received. Anthea has also served as a Vice Chairman of the Conservative Party. 


John profile pictureRauber John 

Director & Counsel, Washington Affairs, Deere & Company 

As Director & Counsel for Deere & Company, John Rauber leads John Deere’s public policy and advocacy efforts in Washington, D.C.  He directs the company’s engagement with the U.S. Congress, Executive Branch and federal agencies on legislative and regulatory matters that impact Deere’s equipment and technology businesses.  Since joining Deere in 2000, John’s responsibilities have included building the company’s public affairs functions globally, and directing its financial services business in Eastern Europe, Russia and the CIS, Middle East and Africa.  He earned is bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and his law degree from the George Washington University, and is admitted to the bar in Maryland and the District of Columbia.   


Justin profile pictureJustin Gong and 

Justin Gong Co-founder, XAG 

Justin Gong joined XAG as co-founder in 2013, and took charge of corporate strategy, globalisation and marketing. XAG is now one of the world’s largest agricultural technology companies, leading in design, development, manufacturing and operation of agricultural UASs (Unmanned Aerial Systems) and robots. During the last five years, Justin and his team had successfully introduced UAS plant protection services to 4.74 million of Chinese farmers, served more than 7.3 million hectares of farmland worldwide. In 2016, Justin founded XAG Academy, which has educated more than 49,365 young agriculture professionals to embrace new technologies and sustainable farming concept. In August, 2018, Justin gate-crashed the Forbes China “30 Under 30”, marking his contribution in the field of agricultural technology. 


James profile pictureProf James Lowenberg-DeBoer 

Elizabeth Creak Chair in Agri-Tech Applied Economics, Harper Adams University 

Prof Lowenberg-DeBoer holds the Elizabeth Creak Chair in Agri-Tech Applied Economics at Harper Adams University (HAU), Newport, Shropshire, UK. He is responsible for economics for the Hands Free Farm (HFF) team at HAU. He is also president-elect of the International Society of Precision Agriculture (ISPA) and co-editor of the journal Precision Agriculture. His research focuses on the economics of agricultural technology, especially precision agriculture and crop robotics. Lowenberg-DeBoer’s research and outreach is founded in hands-on experience in agriculture including production of maize and soybeans in the US state of Iowa. 


Euros profile pictureEuros Jones 

Partner, ERM 

Euros Jones is a Partner in ERM based in Brussels. He joined ERM in December 2017 having previously held the post of Regulatory Affairs Director in the European Crop Protection Association (ECPA), where he led the policy and regulatory advocacy work of the European industry, working with over 20 member companies and 30 national associations in Europe. ERM is a leading global provider of environmental, health, safety, risk, social and sustainability consulting services. 


Mike profile pictureMike Carroll 

Principal Consultant, TSG Consulting 

Mike Carroll currently works for TSG Consulting. He has previously worked for Arysta LifeScience, Dow AgroSciences and Monsanto in agrochemical research and development, regulatory affairs and project management. He holds BSc and PhD degrees in biochemistry from the UK universities of Bath and London respectively and has worked in the UK, Germany, Belgium and the USA with 37 years’ experience gained in the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industries. He is particularly interested in how regulatory processes differ from country to country and how local politics ultimately controls the regulatory process. 


What attendees say


A great event that showcases the future of our industry.

Finalist 2018

Marrone Bio

It is a premier event that recognises valuable contributions from the agro industry's best, with extreme organisation and professionalism.

Finalist 2018

Compliance Services

An important and respected award ceremony, which reflects excellence in the industry.

Finalist 2018

European Crop Protection Association

It is great to see how our industry is evolving through various achievements.

Finalist 2018


It is a great event to get up to date with the current status of the agrochemical industry and see great achievements recognised by your peers.

Attendee 2018


We are incredibly honoured and proud to see our efforts to improve transparency applauded by this prestigious industry event.

Finalist 2018