Showcasing the North’s agrifood expertise for Missouri trade mission

An Agri-Tech mission from the US was hosted by N8 AgriFood as part of a UK tour to meet the country’s leaders in agriculture and food innovation.

Organised by Missouri’s World Trade Centre in St Louis, the delegation was made up of major stakeholders from the city and state representing government, business and academia.

The aim of the St Louis Ag-Tech Trade, Investment and Research Mission was to build connections between the UK, the city of St Louis, and the State of Missouri, focused around innovation for agriculture and food.

The delegation visited leading universities and R&D centres in a bid to build relationships and explore business and research opportunities with the potential to mutually enhance the agri-food sectors of the UK, St Louis and Missouri.

Marianna Ventouratou-Morys, international strategy manager for N8 AgriFood, said: “It was a pleasure to welcome the delegation from Missouri.

“N8 AgriFood’s long standing engagement with the US mid-west, facilitated by the FCO’s Science and Innovation Network, means that the North of England is becoming an important reference point in the agrifood world for international businesses and academics looking for investment opportunities.”

After a morning in York meeting with representatives from Fera and CHAP at the National Agri-Food Innovation Centre, the visiting mission was hosted by N8 AgriFood in the afternoon at the University of York. The itinerary included a showcase of N8 AgriFood’s work, including specific examples of industry engagement across the programme, and short presentations from leading researchers.

As well as presentations from N8 AgriFood’s academic lead Katherine Denby, and international lead Steve Banwart, the delegation also heard from representatives from BioVale and the Biorenewables Development Centre; two York-based organisations working alongside N8 AgriFood in the bioeconomy.

Kyle Donan, head of Science & Innovation for the British Consulate-General in Chicago, who facilitated the Mission, said: “Visiting with N8 Agri-Food, as part of their itinerary in York, helped the delegation better understand opportunities to work in the North of England and see the close relationship between N8 universities and their partners which support a strong and innovative agri-food sector across this region.