NIAB - National Institute of Agricultural Botany

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NIAB and TAG in merger talks to create national trials and crop research centre

02 May 2009

The National Institute of Agricultural Botany (NIAB) and The Arable Group (TAG) are at an advanced stage of merger discussions to create a national, independent centre for applied crop research and information.

Both organisations believe a merged operation, focused on the needs of progressive arable farmers, will provide an unrivalled source of high quality, unbiased research and information, offering expertise and services along the length of the seed, variety and crop protection development pipelines.

The merger will also bring operational benefits through increased flexibility and critical mass in key staffing areas, while improved economies of scale and resource efficiencies will provide greater financial stability and investment capability.

In a joint statement announcing the merger talks, NIAB Board Chairman Tony Pexton and TAG Board Chairman Geoff Elliott said:

“At a time of increasing interest in crop improvement and productive agriculture, a new national organisation, combining NIAB’s core skills in plant genetics, variety evaluation and seed testing with TAG’s strengths in applied agronomy research and farmer communication, will be ideally placed to meet the crop research and information needs of UK arable farmers, allied industries, levy boards, research councils and Government.”

A further announcement on the details of the merger will be made once due diligence procedures have been completed later in the summer.

For further information contact:
Tony Pexton, NIAB Board Chairman
T: 01377 271063            
M: 07771 513180
E: tonypexton@pextonfarms.co.uk

Dr Tina Barsby, Chief Executive, NIAB
T: 01223 342200
M: 07711 845209
E: tina.barsby@niab.com

Geoff Elliott, TAG Board Chairman
T: 01794 301665
M: 07836 553979
E: geoff.elliott@thearablegroup.com

Colin MacEwan, Chief Executive, TAG
T: 01953 713200
M: 07919 216780
E: colin.macewan@thearablegroup.com

Issued by:
Daniel Pearsall, Front Foot Communications            
T: 01487 831425     
E: daniel.pearsall@frontfoot.uk.com