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Former Rothamsted Research Director features prominently in 2010 New Years' Honours list

Visit  Rothamsted Research website

4 January 2010

Professor Ian Crute, the former director of Rothamsted Research said he was “Delighted to have had his contributions recognised in such a notable way" after news that he has been awarded a CBE in the New Year's Honours list today.

From 1999-2009, Professor Crute was the director of Rothamsted Research; the UK’s primary scientific establishment concerned with sustainable plant based agriculture and interactions with the environment. During his time as Director, Rothamsted received an unprecedented level of investment in its specialist laboratory facilities and is now unrivalled in the UK as an institution for crop research.

Professor Crute, who left Rothamsted Research in August 2009 to take up the post of Chief Scientist at The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), is among the leading scientific luminaries on the New Year Honours list and has been honoured by the Queen by virtue of his contribution to plant science.

Professor Crute’s scientific contributions are recorded in over 160 publications; he was awarded the Research Medal of the Royal Agricultural Society of England in 1992 and the British Crop Production Council Medal in 2006. He is a past President of the British Society for Plant Pathology and held a Visiting Professorship in the Faculty of Biological Sciences at the University of Oxford. His committee and board memberships include: Chairman of the Sainsbury Laboratory Council, member of the Lead Expert Group on the “Future of Food and Farming” Foresight project and Board member of HGCA’s Crop Evaluation Ltd. "After more than 20 years of inappropriately low political priority, agricultural science is now becoming well appreciated again for its fundamental importance to our future food security; there is much to be done if we are to achieve adequate supplies of sustainably produced food into the future,” said Professor Crute. He added, “I have spent all my working life in agricultural science and have had the privilege of sharing this time with many talented people in several different institutions. However, the most recent 10 years spent as Director at Rothamsted, have been particularly rewarding. I very much appreciate this award but many others have contributed to what I have achieved during my time living and working in Hertfordshire.


Notes to editors

For further information, please see external contact below.

About the Professor Ian Crute

Professor Crute is currently the Chief Scientist of The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB). AHDB appointed Professor Crute with the brief to deliver collaboration and co-operation across its £15,000,000 annual investment of levy funds in research and knowledge transfer programmes. He took up the post in early September 2009 and is part of the Senior Executive Team. Ian has a First Class Honours degree in botany and a PhD in plant pathology from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. From 1973 to 1986 he was a research group leader in plant pathology at what is now Warwick-HRI (formerly Horticulture Research International - Wellesbourne). In 1986 he obtained a Fulbright Fellowship and went to the University of Wisconsin in Madison, USA to work on the genetics of resistance to fungal pathogens. On returning to England in 1987 he moved to HRI East Malling (now East Malling Research) as Head of the Crop and Environment Protection Department. He moved back to HRI at Warwick in 1993 and after two years as Head of Plant Pathology he became Director at Wellesbourne with overall responsibility for the research direction at the site until his move to Rothamsted.

About Rothamsted Research

Rothamsted Research, an institute of the BBSRC, is based in Hertfordshire and one of the largest agricultural research institutes in the country. The mission of Rothamsted Research is to be recognised internationally as a primary source of first-class scientific research and new knowledge that addresses stakeholder requirements for innovative policies, products and practices to enhance the economic, environmental and societal value of agricultural land. The Applied Crop Science department is based at Broom's Barn, Higham, Suffolk. A third site, North Wyke Research, is located near Okehampton in Devon.


The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) is the UK funding agency for research in the life sciences. Sponsored by Government, BBSRC annually invests around £450M in a wide range of research that makes a significant contribution to the quality of life for UK citizens and supports a number of important industrial stakeholders including the agriculture, food, chemical, healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors. BBSRC carries out its mission by funding internationally competitive research, providing training in the biosciences, fostering opportunities for knowledge transfer and innovation and promoting interaction.

External contact

Dr Adélia de Paula, Rothamsted Research Press Office

tel: 01582 763133 ext 2260


Matt Goode, Head of External Relations

tel: 01793 413299

Tracey Jewitt, Media Officer

tel: 01793 414694
fax: 01793 413382