Rothamsted Research

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North Wyke Farm Platform EFRA Visit - May 2014

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee visited North Wyke on the 8th May 2014 to gather evidence for the 2nd Report on Food Security. The six MPs that attended were Miss Anne McIntosh (Chair; Conservative, Thirsk and Malton), Mrs Mary Glindon (Labour, North Tyneside), Sheryll Murray (Conservative , South East Cornwall), Neil Parish (Conservative, Tiverton and Honiton) and Roger Williams (Liberal Democrat, Brecon and Radnorshire).The Committee were given a tour of the Farm Platform and dedicated laboratories, provided with the latest information about our research in the field and in a panel interview. The Committee found the visit ‘interesting and useful’ and recognised that we ‘were all so enthusiastic about [our] work and the work itself was really important’. After the visit, Rothamsted Research was asked to contribute written evidence to the Committee about the importance of long-term research funding to develop sustainable livestock farming systems.

The Report said the Committee ‘were impressed with the range of practical research we saw at Rothamsted Research Institute’ and emphasised the need for ‘greater research effort and funding directed at reducing [GHG] emissions from more intensive beef, sheep and dairy farming systems’ and ‘run off from soil’, and ‘protecting soil quality’.  They recognised that a ‘shortage of whole or sub-farm scale research environments remains a constraint on certain types of agricultural systems research in which livestock and other farming systems’ could be replicated and stressed the ‘importance of systems and holistic approaches for longer term adaptation to underpin food security’.

The full report (HC 243 Second Report - Food Security) can be downloaded at

23rd October 2014:

Further to the announcement made last week, the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee has now published its Special Report containing the Government Response to its Report on Food security.  A copy can be found here:


Fourth Special Report of Session 2014–15 (HC 702)

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National Capability

A national capability is a BBSRC-funded resource intended to benefit the scientific community in general. These can be facilities as well as opensource datasets. 

National Capabilities

Rothamsted Insect Survey

Operates two national networks for monitoring insect populations in the UK

North Wyke Farm Platform

Provides the research community access to a range of in situ state-of-the-art instrumentation in hydrologically isolated fields and farms to better address key issues in sustainable agriculture.


A database of interactions between pathogens and their hosts maintained at Rothamsted Research with international input.

Long-Term Experiments

These have been running since the mid 19th Century, provide a unique experimental system and archive of soil and plant samples.