LIYSF participants spent Tuesday the 2nd of August visiting various science and research establishments throughout England. These locations gave the students the opportunity to visit industrial sites, research centres, scientific institutions and organisations, including world class research institutions and laboratories.
This year, LIYSF students were fortunate enough to get the chance to visit the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) for the first time. APHA is the UK Government agency that is responsible for animal, plant and bee health. Their key role is to identify, manage, and eradicate incidents and outbreaks of endemic and exotic diseases. The students learnt about the extensive work carried out by APHA to serve the UK and beyond through research, surveillance and investigation of diseases. They were also shown molecular biology labs, insectaries, and the research facilities they have on site. The lecturers spoke about everything from the avian flu to bovine tuberculosis and the extensive testing that is carried out by the APHA, inspiring and educating each of the students. The main driver of the APHA is industry, as people do not want to trade with farmers if their livestock have any diseases. For this reason, APHA carry out testing on racehorses that are leaving the country, as well as livestock that are being sold to overseas clients, just to name a few. These tests are all about exporting animals but ensuring that the environment is protected at the same time.
Another group of students visited Syngenta’s International Research Centre at Jealott’s Hill. Syngenta is a leading agriculture company helping to improve global food security by enabling millions of farmers to make better use of available resources. The Jealott’s Hill centre is the company’s largest research and development site. The participants learned about the importance of Syngenta’s work on global food security as the population of the world continues to grow. The unique amalgamation of biology and computational chemistry gave the students an interesting insight into the development of crop protections. Students were given the opportunity to go on a tour around the laboratories and greenhouses, ranging from day one lab tests in artificial conditions, secondary profile screening in greenhouses, to the formulation of products from the active ingredients. On top of this, the participants learned about the fundamental precedence of product and environmental safety once the pesticide is formulated.
Other visits that LIYSF participants had the opportunity to go on are:
To find out more about LIYSF, see here.
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