24 August 2001

Interactive disc guides choices

A KEY part of the HGCA drive to make the most of the Agriknowledge project is a novel interactive CD to help farmer decision-making this autumn.

Based around the Agriknowledge messages, it offers growers video clip presentations from the experts, background data and interactive tools. Topics covered are variety choice, seed rate, fertilisers, marketing, weed control and crop storage.

"It is probably for the more technically aware farmer, providing more technical information to complement the Agriknowledge project," says HGCA communications manager Rosie Bryson. "If the aut-umn CD is well received we would like to produce another for spring."

The CD should allow growers to extract more useful information than they would get from a series of presentations at a conference.

"It is nice to have the spoken word and a human face delivering the messages and each talk is split into sections, so you can replay and jump between parts to get the full picture," says Dr Bryson.

Interactive tools, such as a seed-rate calculator in the seed rate section, add to the CDs value, with topic sheet information and proof of benefits data also included.

All the Agriknowledge benchmarks are detailed, plus the foliar disease symptoms encyclopaedia from the DESSAC project.

The CD will be sent direct to the 3500 levy-payers with computers on the HGCAs list of 28,000 farmers.

Further CDs will be available free at roadshows and by contacting the HGCA direct. A total of 20,000 CDs have been produced at a cost of £40,000.

&#8226 The hot CD set to be played in embassies, grain traders and grain buying offices all around the world this autumn and winter is the British Cereals CD from the BCE export promotions division of HGCA.

It explains the value of British cereals for export markets, including detailed technical commentary and a guide to the suitability of UK-grown grain. &#42