BCPC Congress 2014: “The place to be!”6th October 2014
“The BCPC Congress is certainly the place to be,” was the reaction from a new delegate to this year’s event on entering the Congress Exhibition at the first break in proceedings and seeing the mix of delegates and exhibitors.
“The Congress is now gaining a reputation as a place where the crop protection regulatory community can exchange information and network,” commented Dr. Louis Wyness, Managing Director of TSGE Forum. ”We now have an international following, with delegates from mainland Europe as well as North Africa and Australasia”.
“We were delighted with our stimulating programme, involving leading experts addressing the Congress theme – ‘European Regulatory Affairs: Precaution or Innovation?” said Dr Colin Ruscoe, Chairman of BCPC. “This year’s presenters included Dr. Peter Maienfisch, Syngenta Crop Protection, examining the impact of the complexities and uncertainties of EU regulations on innovative crop protection for the EU market, and Paul Leonard, representing the European Risk Forum, arguing that adoption of the Innovation Principle, to be used alongside the Precautionary Principle, would stimulate confidence, investment and innovation in the EU, at the same time ensuring both human and environmental protection.”
Don Pendergrast, Plant Health Advisor, National Farmers Union pointed out that oilseed rape provides a rich source of pollen for bees and other pollinators, but the growing of this crop is threatened by the overly precautionary approach to pesticide regulation. Whilst Professor Joyce Tait, Director of the Innogen Institute, University of Edinburgh, returned this year to speak on Responsible Research and Innovation and the political control of technology, concluding that, as innovators need to become more responsible, so do regulators – and social science researchers who influence regulatory policy.
“The Congress formula, including updates on EU regulations and consideration of political and social drivers of the regulatory environment, clearly works – and the Congress dinner at the Mercure Hotel proved very popular, with over 100 people engaging in animated discussion and networking. It was very gratifying to see an increase in both delegates and exhibitors in the second year of the new-style BCPC Congress,” said Dr Ruscoe at the close of the event.
The format will be maintained at the BCPC Congress 2015, organised by BCPC in association with TSGE Forum, will follow a similar format, and again take place at the Hilton Metropole, Brighton, UK on 6 – 7 October 2015.