He will be expanding NIAB’s research on new crop protection tools, fungicide resistance monitoring and developing optimal disease control programmes for fungal pathogens on cereals and other crops.
Dr Fraaije joins NIAB from Rothamsted Research where he led the Fungicide Research Group. At NIAB, he is working on fungicide sensitivity testing and resistance monitoring as part of projects funded by AHDB and the agrochemical industry. He will be working with NIAB plant breeders, wheat growers and the agrochemical industry on key diseases of wheat and barley, assessing fungicide performance and resistance development in both the laboratory setting and in the field. Combining the latest knowledge on disease epidemics, fungicide sensitivity monitoring and host resistance will further advance NIAB’s work collaborating with industry and research partners to deliver the best integrated pest management strategies onto farm.
Dr Richard Harrison, NIAB’s Director of Cambridge Crop Research says, “It is a pleasure to welcome Bart to the team at Cambridge and I’m confident our crop research programme will benefit enormously from his experience and knowledge, both in disease diagnostics and fungicide research. He is well known and respected across the UK and globally for his research on fungicide resistance monitoring and communication skills. We are looking forward to a new chapter in crop protection research at NIAB and our wider Cambridge partnerships.”
Speaking about his appointment Dr Fraaije highlighted the opportunities in being part of an organisation that has an international reputation for independence and innovation in applied science. “There is an increased urgency to develop sustainable crop protection solutions in agriculture, both in the UK as well as globally. Joining NIAB is a great opportunity for me to work more closely with breeders, growers and industry in identifying the best crop protection tools that can be used in combination with resistant cultivars as part of an optimal disease management programme whilst minimising the risk of resistance development.”