Some 400 movers and shakers in the industry gathered to celebrate the successes of a sector brimming with creativity and innovation.
Agrow’s winners and highly commended entrants were revealed to a room packed with anticipation as the centerpiece of an evening filled with glitz and glamour and the industry’s finest.
“There was a broad diversity and huge amount of talent among the winners and shortlisted applicants alike,” says Sanjiv Rana, Editor-in-Chief of Agrow. “Competition was intense for our top awards, with many excellent applications and highly competitive shortlists.”
DuPont was the big winner at the fifth Agrow Awards ceremony held in London last night. The company collected awards for most innovative chemistry, best formulation innovation and best off-patent pesticide strategy. It was an impressive hat-trick and the third time that DuPont has won in three categories since the inaugural Agrow Awards in 2007.
DuPont and Dow AgroSciences were the only companies short-listed for the last award. The two have been battling it out for honours since 2007 and have been the most prolific participants in the Agrow Awards. Dow was successful in two categories this year. It received the award for best innovation in non-crop and its US range and pasture marketing team collected the award for best marketing campaign with a programme aimed at weed control in forage grasses.
BASF scooped an award with its first application to the awards in the best new crop protection product or trait category while Marrone Bio Innovations collected the award for best new biopesticide for the second time in three years.
Each of the companies short-listed for the best novel biotechnology award were first-time participants in the competition. The award went to the Two Blades Foundation for its TAL code technology, which can be used for the precise improvement of plant genomes.
The hotly contested best packaging category was won by another awards debutant, Nufarm Australia and the award for best industry collaboration went to ChemChina and its 60%-owned subsidiary, Makhteshim-Agan Industries (MAI).
The Chinese company, Lier Chemical, picked up the award for best company from an emerging region and the award for best supporting role went to specialist market research company GfK Kynetec.
CropLife Latin America collected the award for best public outreach programme. It has held a series of annual international forums promoting Latin America’s potential as a major global food supplier.
The best stewardship programme award went to Arysta LifeScience for its “Aplique Bem programme – quality from the field”. It offers personalised training to growers on application and residue monitoring, and assessment of their equipment. Precision Laboratories’ smartphone application, Mix Tank, was highly commended by the judges.
The loudest applause of the evening was for this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award winner, Cam Davreux.
“Cam Davreux has been dedicated to making Canada's plant science health and safety standards and programs respected in Canada and around the world,” explains Rana. “He played a leading role in the development of CropLife Canada’s “Stewardshipfirst” initiatives, which include full life-cycle management stewardship programmes from lab to label to storage and disposal. He was also instrumental in developing the Agrichemical Warehousing Standards Association.”
“Cam’s greatest achievement is the development of the empty pesticide container recycling program in Canada. Since 1989, this programme has removed and recycled approximately 87.5 million containers,” adds Rana. “Cam Davreux is a deserving winner of our highest accolade.”
The deserving winners and highly commended shortlisted candidates helped to make this year’s Agrow Awards one of the most competitive and rewarding ever held.
“We had a tremendous response to these awards in terms of applications, sponsors and attendees,” says Rana. “Our 15 categories were well-contested and we join our sponsors in congratulating the winners, highly commended nominees and shortlisted candidates. They all deserve the highest praise for their contributions to our industry.”
This year’s Agrow Awards provided guests with an ideal opportunity to network and meet up with friends and colleagues. In addition, Agrow added some extra glitz and glamour by holding a charity auction. For the first time ever, Agrow teamed up with the Prince’s Trust to raise funds for the Million Makers Challenge which sees organisations from around the UK compete to raise £1 million for charity.