See below a list of up-coming events scheduled by TAA or by our partner organisations:

If members wish to add an event relevant to the TAA, please send the details (in the format given below) to the Webmanager, we will then upload the information.

Event Title Date Time Subject Details Venue Details Contact Details
Vertical Sustainable Growing Systems: Controlled Environment Agriculture
23 February 2018 11.30

TAA East Anglia has been invited by Jason Hawkins-Row of Aponic Co Ltd,
 to visit their controlled environment trials at the NIAB centre at Hasse Fen, Soham, Cambridgeshire. They have developed a commercial vertical soil-less growing system that uses 90% less water than traditional agriculture, runs on rain water and solar power, does not emit harmful run-off into the environment and massively reduces the need for fossil fuels in food production. We shall be able to see their systems for producing a wide range of vegetables and to discuss their applicability to tropical agriculture and small-scale peri-urban agriculture. As the trials are indoors, we shall not be limited by weather. More information on the trials can be viewed on-line. This visit follows-on from the talk on controlled environment agriculture by Ralph van Kaufman at the TAA Curry Club earlier in June 2017. Jason is an excellent host and should be able to initiate a fascinating discussion on the potential applications of their system around the world.

Aponics will provide a sandwich lunch, for which we will ask attendees to contribute to cover the costs. We plan to meet at 11.30 for Jason's presentation, lunch and then a tour of the trial before reconvening for discussions. 

NIAB Field Trials, Hasse Rd, Soham, Ely, Cambridgeshire, CB7 5UW, UK [a remote location: turn east off the Newmarket-Ely road near Soham onto Hasse Road, drive 2.0 miles to NIAB Innovation Hub on right after 'undulating' road surface].

Click here for location details >>

We are limited to 20 people: please reserve your place early, click hereThe nearest station is Ely: we can arrange transport from Ely Station to Soham (email Bill Thorpe). For.more details, please contact the East Anglia Convenor. If you get lost on the day, call 07785 258026.

Annual Aid & Development Africa Summit
27 February 2018 08.00

Join the 3rd annual Aid & Development Africa Summit on 27-28 February 2018, uniting humanitarian and development leaders, decision makers and advisors committed to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in the region. The 2018 agenda will focus on innovations and technology to improve humanitarian aid operations, financial inclusion, health & WASH and community resilience in Africa. Participants will gain first hand insights from development banks, donors and government agencies into their financing priorities and funding guidelines as well as benefit from networking opportunities. Read more ....

Safari Park Hotel, Nairobi, Kenya

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Click here to register. Please contactTim Swinfen-Green if any other queries. .

Curry Club talk: Peter Thorne ‘Don’t Forget the Livestock
01 March 2018 11.00

The role of livestock in mixed farming systems in securing the livelihoods of the rural poor in developing countries is often seen as a secondary consideration in the quest for food security. The tendency has been to focus on increased production / productivity of staple food crops and improved nutrition through crop and diet diversification. When livestock do make it onto development agendas there is a tendency to focus on their negative impacts on the environment: most notably through their contribution to global GHG emissions and undesirable land-use changes. Guess what? - it’s not that simple! GHG emissions vary enormously with the type of system, not always in ways that might be anticipated and with hugely differing implications depending on the assessment criteria used. It is not well understood that in poor households it is often livestock that are the key to delivering a diversified diet for improved nutrition. Most significantly, livestock - because of their multiple functions and the ways in which they influence crop production - are the lynchpin without which numerous smallholder mixed farming systems would cease to exist.

Peter Thorne originally joined the Tropical Products Institute (TPI). Since then his research interests broadened to cover systems simulation modelling and the role of livestock in mixed farming systems. He has worked independently and for a number of research organisations, most recently the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI). His work has taken him to more than 40 countries, mostly in East Africa, South Asia and the Pacific Islands. Over the last six years Peter has coordinated USAID’s Africa RISING project in the Ethiopian Highlands to validate and promote technologies for sustainable intensification of highland, mixed farming systems. He is currently a member of the External Advisory Board to USAID’s Sustainable Intensification Innovation Laboratory – and a member of TAA.
Strand Continental Hotel, 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA, UK

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£15 per head to include coffee, curry lunch and use of the meeting venue and facilities. Book your place with Terry Wiles.

Tanzania APPG: Making Progress in Agriculture
06 March 2018 18.00

A joint meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tanzania and the Britain Tanzania Society.

Over 60% of Tanzania's population earn their living from agriculture, and while this percentage is reducing slowly the absolute numbers involved are increasing. Yet the importance and potential of the sector is often played down. This event will look at some of the recent successes in the sector, and the ways in which it is likely to develop in future.

Speakers will include Antony Ellman (TAA member), whose field experience of agriculture in Tanzania goes back to the 1960s, Jeremy Lefroy MP whose family is involved with farming in Northern Tanzania, Mukesh Lakhani whose company MD Import Export Ltd imports tropical agricultural products from Tanzania, and Andrew Coulson who continues to write about small scale agriculture in Tanzania. The short presentations will be followed by discussion and debate.

Houses of Parliament, Westminster, London. Committee Room 6; enter via Cromwell Gate but allow time to get through the security.

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If you wish to attend, please email Jonathan Williams 

3rd ECHO Pastoralist Symposium, Kenya
06 March 2018 09.00

ECHO East Africa is an institutional member of TAA. They welcome you to join their third pastoralism symposium, scheduled for 6th-8th March 2018. More details will be available later.

Sportsman's Arms Hotel, Nanyuki, Kenya

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Contact Erwin Kinsey to register.

Africa Climate Smart Agriculture Congress
06 March 2018 07.30

This two-day congress will be held 6th & 7th March 2018. The objective of the Congress is to provide an opportunity for cross-sector networking and knowledge exchange that is competent and neutral, technical and commercial by bringing together all stakeholders, including regional governments and policy makers, private sector and research organisations, UN agencies and civil society. Read more View the draft agenda.

Safari Park Hotel, Nairobi, Kenya

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Register on-line. Contact Christos Apostolou 

42nd Annual Conference of Soil Science Society of Nigeria
12 March 2018 10.00

The Soil Science Sociaety of Nigeria invites you to this year’s conference, with the theme "Sustainable Management of Soil and Water Resources for Food Security, Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation”. The conference will be 12th to 16thMarch. Read more ….

Institute for Agricultural Training and Research, Moore Plantation, Ibadan – Oyo State, Nigeria Abstract submission to until 31 December, 2017. Click here for Registration  
Presentations at Curry Club by TAAF Awardees on Myanmar and Kenya
13 March 2018 11.00

An additional Curry Club meeting has been arranged at short notice. Jack Jenkins-Hill and Mariam Salah, both Masters students from University College London who received TAAF awards for their field work in 2017, will make presentations based on their dissertations. Jack will speak on the "Impact of politico-legal institutions on Natural Resource Governance in Myanmar’s Uplands”. Mariam’s talk is on "Climate change and improved agricultural practices in Elgeyo-Marakwet County, Kenya”. The meeting was to have been held at UCL but the college is unavailable on 13 March because of strike action. The organisers have asked TAA if we can provide an alternative venue. Please come if you can to hear these interesting talks and to support the students and TAAF.Talks will be followed by the usual curry lunch.

Strand Continental Hotel, 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA, UK

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£15 per head to include coffee, curry lunch and use of the meeting venue and facilities. Book your place with Terry Wiles, with copy to Antony Ellman

The Bees' needs: lecture
14 March 2018 19.30

Bees and other insects are crucially important, helping pollinate crops and support our wild ecosystems. TheUniversity of Reading is at the forefront of research into the decline of insect pollinators and understanding how valuable they are for crop production.

The public lecture (19:30 - 20:45) will outline current evidence on the status of pollinating insects in the UK and across the globe. The crucial role pollinators play for crop production will be explored as well as ways we can help protect these iconic species for the important role they have providing vital ecosystem services. Dr Mike Garratt, a Senior Research Fellow in the School of Agriculture Policy and Development, will present the latest research on pollinators and what we can do to help protect them.

G11, Henley Business School, Whiteknights Campus,RG6 6UD, UK

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DFID Alumni Association Seminar: Agricultural Development: What makes for success?
19 March 2018 14.00

This seminar will take place from 14.00 to 15.30. The session will be led by George Gwyer (TAA member), with inputs from Andrew Bennett (TAA President), and Michael Scott, all of whom previously worked in ODA’s Natural Resources Advisory Group.

The discussions will focus on George Gwyer’s book professional reflections in a book entitled Dilemmas in Development: Journeys of an Agricultural Economist, published in 2016 and available on Amazon. Specific issues that will be considered are as follows:

  • •What are the success stories of aid-assisted agriculture and rural development?
  • •What were their limitations?
  • •Case studies will include projects supporting irrigated agriculture in India and Pakistan, cash crop and rural development in Africa, the Pacific and the Caribbean.
  • •What are the implications for DFID today?

Participants will be encouraged to share their own experiences during the discussion.

DFID Office, 22 Whitehall, London SW1A 2EG, UK (Room RB.G13)

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To attend, please contact John Stuppel, Secretary to the DFID Alumni Association, by midday on Friday 16 March 2018.

Rothamsted Open Innovation Forum: Global Food Challenge Summit
23 March 2018 09.00

Building on the inaugural Rothamsted Open Innovation Forum, 2018’s challenge summit will focus on driving forward global agri-food challenges and facilitating focused round table discussion on innovation policy and practices which help or hinder advancements in agri-food. Participation will be by invitation, although people who have not already been involved are welcome to apply. Places are limited to a maximum of 25 to each challenge workshop, of which there will be a maximum of four. Rothamsted Research is an institutional member of TAA.

Rothamsted Research, West Common, Harpenden AL5 2JQ, UK

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Contact Asmaa Shariff for invitations 

Curry Club Talk - Cecilia Benda on farming in Sahel & Horn of Africa
29 March 2018 11.00

TAA Member Cecilia Benda will talk on the subject of Improving vulnerable people’s livelihoods and resilience in the drylands of the Sahel and Horn of Africa. This will be an overview of the principal agriculture and livestock activities of Concern Worldwide in working with the most vulnerable people. She will draw on examples from Niger, Chad, Sudan, Kenya and Somalia, with a focus on Concern’s work on resilience to address climate change, population growth and inequalities. Their work is undertaken in direct partnership with the poorest people in their target countries, enabling them to improve their lives. Concern uses its wide experience to influence local, national and international decisions to reduce extremes of poverty through short-term relief during humanitarian crises as well as long-term development. increasingly supporting the nexus between emergency and development through resilience and disaster risk reduction (DRR) activities.

Cecilia Benda (MSc Hons) has been the Agriculture and NRM Advisor with Concern Worldwide since June 2016 supporting Concern countries in the Sahel and Horn of Africa. With 10 years of experience in working in sustainable agriculture for smallholders, food security, resilience and the management of natural resources, she provides technical and managerial leadership in food and livelihood security projects and in the monitoring, evaluation and learning processes, mainly in southern and eastern Africa, Horn of Africa and the Sahel.
Strand Continental Hotel, 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA, UK

Click here for location details >>

£15 per head to include coffee, curry lunch and use of the meeting venue and facilities. Book your place with Terry Wiles.

Workshop on Agrarian Crisis
03 April 2018 10.00

Farmers in India have been in deep distress over the last few decades as agriculture has been made systematically unviable as a means of living. Farmer suicides are only the extreme symptom of a much deeper underlying crisis that has gripped agriculture. The agrarian crisis has many dimensions to it- economic, environmental, social and political. How do we unearth the roots of this crisis? And is there a way forward? What kind of policies should one demand for a guaranteed income for farmers, and what kind of international trade in agriculture would benefit farmers rather than exploit us? The reclamation and defense of the sovereignty of farming communities - over seeds, water, land, forests, territories and knowledge - is therefore the main political anchor for articulating the rights of farmers. These and other issues will be the focus of this workshop from 3rd to 7thApril. Read more ….. .

Sambhaavnaa Institute, Kandbari, Palampur, Himachal Pradesh, India

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Click here to read the full call for application details. For more information please call +91 889 422 7954 or email:

TAA seminar: Improving rural livelihoods by reducing crop losses
09 May 2018 13.30

The TAA East Anglia Branch Annual Seminar will focus on reducing crop losses, especially in E Africa. The event is being co-hosted by Cambridge University’s Global Food Security initiative and CamPlantsHub. There will be two presentations, with time for Q&A discussions.

  • Dr Philip Taylor will speak on the work of CABI’s Plantwise programme and how it supports smallholder farmers. The aim of Plantwise is to increase food security and improve rural livelihoods by reducing crop losses.
  • Luke Braidwood (Plant Sciences PhD researcher) will talk on maize lethal necrosis, a viral condition which has been spreading around East Africa over the last 5-10 years. He has been characterising the East African outbreak and developing GM maize lines which should hopefully be resistant (the mechanism is amiRNAs).

We are arranging a tour of the David Attenborough Building (DAB) after the seminar (maximum 15 people). The DAB is home to the Cambridge Conservation Initiative (CCI), housing many important NGOs in the conservation field.

Seminar Room (1.25a), David Attenborough Building, off Pembroke St, Cambridge, UK

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Please register with Eventbrite, more information from East Anglia Convenor.

Course: Participatory Monitoring & Evaluation for Learning, IDS
04 June 2018 09.00

Increasingly, development implementing organisations are using complexity-aware, learning-based approaches to design and drive their monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems. This enables practitioners better to understand how change actually happens and impact is achieved in real time in complex social change contexts – so as to use M&E to fuel impact. There is also growing awareness of the need for downward accountability and supporting greater feedback from those engaging in interventions to those designing and funding them. The course, 4 to 8 June 2018, aims to equip development planners and practitioners with the knowledge and skills more effectively to design and improveM&E systems and move towards a participatory learning practice within projects, programmes and their organisations.
 Read more .....

Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, Library Road, Falmer, Brighton, UK

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Apply on-line. Application deadline:11 February 2018.

1st International Conference on Water Security
17 June 2018 10,00

This conference, 17-20 June 2018, will allow academics, thinkers and practitioners from around the world to present, discuss and highlight the key issues and directions from a scientific perspective, including data needs, and how data can be acquired, successful public and private sector business models in different settings, and what the knowledge gaps are. The conference provides a forum for in-person meetings to complement the journal Water Security, which focuses on review and synthesis articles covering the field. Oral, poster and workshop abstracts are invited on the conference topics and should be submitted using the online abstract submission system.

Hyatt Regency Toronto, Toronto, Canada

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Earlyregistration by 23 March 2018.

Groundswell Conference & Field Event 2018
27 June 2018 09.30

The next Groundswell conference and field event will be 27th and 28th June 2018. Groundswell’s mission is to promote understanding and disseminate factual information on no-till and regenerative agriculture within the UK. Groundswell is an independent farming conference, designed 'by farmers for farmers' to focus on emerging methods of soil regeneration, reducing inputs and increasing profitability in arable and mixed farming situations.On a working no-till farm within a mile of the A1(M) in Hertfordshire, the Cherry family put together a two day conference with speakers sharing their experiences from around the world.

Lannock Manor Farm, Junction 9 (A1(M)), Hertfordshire, SG4 7EE, UK

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Register for updates and booking details. Contact for more details. 

21st World Congress of Soil Science (WCSS)
12 August 2018 10.00 The theme will be "Soils to feed and fuel the world. The WCSS is the main event of the International Union of Soil Science. It takes place every four years and is open to all members of the IUSS and other participants. For further information on congress website  RioCentro Exhibition and Convention Centre, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 12-17 August 2018

Click here for location details >>
Contact Flavio Camargo, Vice President Congress.  
21st International Soil Tillage Research Organization (ISTRO) Conference
24 September 2018 09.00

Invitation to participate in the Conference, which will be held from 24th to 27th September 2018. Soil, a living skin covering the earth, can be regarded as the mother of all living things, while tillage is the mechanical manipulation of soil to specifically promote and enhance crop growth. Civilizations have used soil and tillage throughout their varied histories. Now with the challenge of food security and climate change, soil and tillage researchers must develop sustainable agriculture and protect the environment. The 21st ISTRO Conference is an excellent opportunity to present research, share ideas and obtain new perspectives in soil and tillage research that will meet these challenges. Read more ….. Includes a four day post-conference tour.

Cité Universitaire Internationale,17 Boulevard Jourdan – 75014 PARIS, France

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Register on-line. Contact address 
Second Africa Congress on Conservation Agriculture
09 October 2018 09.00

The aim of 2ACCA, 9th to 12thOctober, is to bring together expert knowledge, information, and insights from practitioners from across different sectors and interest groups at all levels of agriculture development in the public, private and civil sectors. This diversity of knowledge and stakeholders is essential to:

·Enable the desired multi-disciplinary and cross-sectoral development of CA as a core production component of climate-smart agriculture; and

· Achieve sustained mobilization of policy, institutional and community support to accelerate the widespread adoption and management of CA as a core element of the expanding climate-smart food and agriculture systems in Africa.

Click here for more information.

Johannesburg, South Africa

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TAA SW Branch and Royal Agriculture University Conference
18 October 2018 10.00 Tentative topic Food Chain Linkages: Locavores, Preservation, Storage & Minimising Wastage.
Details to follow.
RAU, Cirencester, UK

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Contact TAA Southwest Organiser  
13th International Conference on Development of Drylands: Converting Grey Areas into Green
11 February 2019 10.00

This is the first announcement for the conference being organized by the International Dryland Development Commission (IDDC), ICAR-Central Arid Zone Research Institute, Jodhpur, India and the Arid Zone Research Association of India (AZRAI), Jodhpur, India, co-sponsored by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, the National Academy of Agricultural Sciences and other Indian and international agencies. The conference will run from 11th to 14th February 2019. Read more …… 

Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India

Click here for location details >>
Click here to register.