SIMA 2020

Fulfilling the requirements of all farmers

At last year’s event, 1,800 companies from 42 countries, representing fifteen different sectors of farming including traction equipment, crop protection equipment and robotics exhibited.

Held in Paris, the SIMA 2020 event aims to fulfil the requirements of all farmers, regardless of the size of the farm they own and run, or their production method. Innovation will take centre stage and visitors will gain invaluable insight into the future of farming.

For more information, and to register for this event, please visit:

Supporting SMEs with innovation and growth

How can you benefit as an SME?

Hear from guest speakers and learn more about what’s on offer for SMEs, in terms of funding, and the next steps you need to take in order to maximise your tax reclaim.

Experts in this area will present and be available for questions at Agri-EPI’s Midlands Agri-Tech Innovation Hub on Wednesday 25 March 2020.

Tickets are free. To register, visit:

Event agenda

8.00 – Registration, networking and breakfast

8.30 – Welcome from Agri-EPI Centre

8.45am – Funding options available

  1. Lucy Mather, KTN-UK
  2. David Baker, Mercia Asset Management: Proof of Concept funding (MEIF)
  3. Giovanni Finocchio, Midven Ltd: Equity Fund (MEIF)
  4. Tracy Sherratt, BRCs: Small Business Loans (again MEIF)
  5. Suresh Patel, Birmingham Council Business Growth Programme
  6. Phil Mitchell, Director at Harbour Key Ltd: Crowd Funding, Equity Funding, Pension Lending

Phil Mitchell is the co-founder of Harbour Key, a business, accountancy and tax advisory practice. A member of the local LEP banking and funding group, he has a passion for finding funding for start-up companies, and uses his knowledge and expertise to offer support and assistance with central Government funding for local loan/ grant funds.

9.45 Mark Tooley, Account Manager at Solid Solutions: an introduction on how you can get involved

Solid Solutions are providers of SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD software, world leading support and training to start-ups and entrepreneurs across the UK and Ireland.

The company has a fast going network of partner organisations, known as Hardware labs, studios, incubators and accelerators, who benefit from free software and award-winning support.

10.00 Mehul Kyprianou-Chavda, R&D Tax Manager at Catax

Learn how your business can benefit and the steps you can take in order to maximise how much of your tax you can reclaim. Less than half of the companies that are eligible for Research and Development tax relief nationwide have ever claimed this potentially valuable source of business funding. Catax have worked with over 14 000 clients across all business sectors. With an average client tax relief benefit of over £56 000, often as a cheque from HMRC, this represents a significant sum which could be re-invested to fund further much needed innovation.

10.30am – Further networking and drop in chats with presenters

Variation and data in agriculture

Variation, data, precision farming and primary food production processes

A profound understanding of variability is a key consideration when achieving controlled, efficient and effective process functionality. It is an approach that has been effectively applied in manufacturing, but also has relevance in other sectors of industry, including precision farming and primary (on-farm) food production.

What does this mean?

Agri-EPI Centre’s Midlands Agri-Tech Innovation Hub will be hosting a one day awareness event on Thursday, 19th March 2020. The event will see guest speakers, Professor James Lowenberg-DeBoer, Elizabeth Creak Chair of Agri-Tech Economics at Harper Adams University, and Dr Peter Worthington, Director of PRISM Europe Consultancy, sharing their views with attendees on extracting valuable data and the understanding variation and better data requirements in precision farming and primary food production processes, respectively. They will also learn more on how this data is related to process economics and business improvement.

Event agenda:

• The nature of variation in processes – common and special causes of variation
• Impact of variation on efficiency, wastage and cost
• Management of variability
• Looking at the needs for better data
• Introduction to Statistical Process Control (SPC)
• Nature of data and choice of control charts
• Technology and support for SPC
• Applying SPC – examples of good practice

Register now

Tickets to this event are £35. To register, please visit our Eventbrite page. Once you have done so, we will be in touch for payment.

Special membership offer

We’re delighted to offer free tickets to Agri-EPI Centre members interested in attending this event. Register now

More about Dr Peter Worthington

Peter Worthington, Director of PRISM Consultancy Ltd, is a professional statistician. His particular expertise includes the Strategic Deployment of Improvement, the Application of Statistical Thinking to Management Processes, Statistical Process Control and Process Improvement Methods. He has applied these practical ideas to many industries including the food and drink sectors

Supporting SMEs with skills

Better your skills as an SME

Hear from Business Development Manager at Harper Adams University, Clare Keegan, as she shares her expertise and knowledge of developing the right skill-set to work effectively as part of an SME.

Colin Thaw, SBC Training’s Managing Director will also offer his insight into the skills gap in the Midlands region, as well as the necessary steps needed to tackle this gap.

This is a free breakfast event, and attendees will have the opportunity to not only meet with Clare and Colin, but they will also meet with other SMEs from the region.

Event agenda

8.00 – Registration and networking opportunity

8:30 – Welcome from Agri-EPI Centre

8:45 – Skills gaps in the region. What do SMEs need? What is on offer?

9:00 – The new world – Digital Apprenticeship funding – have you reserved?

Clare Keegan explains what is available, and answers the questions: how do you do it? And what exactly are you committing to?

9:15 – Apprenticeship skills, what level and specialism do you need?

Clare Keegan explains how apprenticeships work in small businesses. She will answer funding questions and will help identify solutions to skills shortages.

9:45 – “A day in the life” of apprentices in SMEs.

Q&A session with Harper Adams University apprentices

10:30 – Refreshments and networking, and tour of Harper Adams University (optional)

To book your place, visit:

World Agri-Tech Summit, San Francisco

In its sixth year, the World Agri-Tech Summit brings together influential stakeholders from all over the world, including South America, Europe and Australia, who have one thing in common: advancing sustainable agriculture in both the developed and developing markets.

Attending the Summit, organised by ReThink Events, will see you meet with other agribusinesses, entrepreneurs, innovators, and investors such as AgFUNDER, Syngenta and Innovate UK. As well as this, there is an opportunity to set up 1:1 meetings with other attendees, which will not only broaden your network base, it could result in the development of new business partners.

For more information about this event and to register, visit:

Supporting SMEs with growth

Are you a growing SME?

Find out more about the support available to you in Shropshire and the Midlands at Agri-EPI Centre’s Midlands Agri-Tech Innovation Hub.

The breakfast meeting will give you an opportunity to hear from and meet guest speakers, including Rose Judeh-Elwell, AGRI Project, and Catherine Bray, Manufacturing Growth Programme, as well as network with other small to medium-sized business owners, who may be facing some of the same problems that you are.

Event agenda

8.00 – Registration, networking and breakfast

8.30 – Attendee introductions

8.45 – Presentations:

  1. AGRI Project – Rose Judeh-Elwell*
  2. Manufacturing Growth Programme – Catherine Bray
  3. Marches Growth Hub (Shropshire) – Emma Chapman

9.15 – Q&A

9.30 – Further networking and drop in chats with presenters

10.30 – Close

This is a free event. To book your place, visit:

*The AGRI project and the Manufacturing Growth Programme are both part funded by the European Regional Development Fund.