Terravesta celebrates a decade in business with a birthday party at Groundswell

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  • Terravesta – the Miscanthus specialist – is celebrating its first decade in business this summer, by hosting a birthday party at Groundswell Show

The party is taking place on the first day of the two-day event on Terravesta’s stand PFB3 on June 22 at 3pm, where the firm invites growers and friends of the business to join them in raising a glass and enjoy some cake, with a few short words from chairman William Cracroft-Eley. 

Alex Robinson, Chief Operating Officer at Terravesta, who has been with the firm since its inception, helped to establish its prime market position over the past 10 years.

“10 years ago, Miscanthus was an ‘alternative crop’ with an uncertain future. Today, demand is outstripping supply, and over 300 UK farmers are reaping the benefits of long term, fixed price, index-linked contracts to grow and sell it. 

“It’s helping to alleviate some of the key issues facing farming, including soil degradation, rising emissions, biodiversity loss and more recently, the rising cost of fertilizer – as it has no requirement for nitrogen. 

“This spring we have seen a record tonnage of harvested bales, the market is expanding, and we’re seeking out more farmers to meet growing demand,” says Alex.

The journey

Alex says: “We’re lucky to have such a dedicated grower base and thanks to our R&D work and partnerships, we have become world-leading experts in the crop. 

“The really exciting chapter started in 2012, when we were contacted by IBERS at Aberystwyth, looking for a commercial partner to help progress their Miscanthus breeding programme. 

“Since then, the business has evolved and now the future for Miscanthus is more exciting than ever.

“However, we really need policy makers to show some commitment to perennial energy crops. Wind and solar are fantastic but we need the biomass base load on the grid to support the other renewable technologies, when they’re not as productive, or when the extra demand is needed quickly.”

William Cracroft-Eley co-founded Terravesta in 2012. William had already planted the crop in 2006 and due to a lack of markets, he saw the opportunity to build a new supply chain and ensure continuity of supply for the pioneering Miscanthus growers.

William founded the business initially and really stimulated a new era for perennial energy crops. 

Alex says: “Since we were founded in 2012, Miscanthus and perennial energy crops have come a long way and are now at the forefront of the global bio-economy, with an exciting future ahead.

“Our progress will be celebrated at the party where there will be a few speeches and friends of the business and growers can enjoy some fizz and cake with us too.”

Terravesta works with world-leading plant breeders to develop Miscanthus hybrids, using modern breeding methods to find the best combinations to suit specific growing environments and end-uses of the biomass. Terravesta Performance Hybrids produce superior yields and deliver a quicker return to the grower compared with Miscanthus giganteus.

The Terravesta stand number is PFB3. 

The Terravesta Team will be speaking to farmers about the benefits of Miscanthus and the long-term contracts available, visit:  https://www.groundswellag.com/exhibitor/terravesta/

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