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Meet the Teams

Knowledge Exchange & Communications

31 March 2017

Tim Isaac, Head Knowledge Exchange (AHDB Potatoes)


t: 07964 975 078

The Knowledge Exchange team is dedicated to improving the flow and uptake of knowledge throughout the supply chain in order to:

  • Improve marketable yield and crop value

  • Understand the cost of production

  • React to a changing environment and legislation


 Anne Stone, Knowledge Exchange Manager - West

e: ¦ t: 07813 527 527

Anne joins from AHDB Horticulture where for 2½ years she has managed a wide portfolio of R&D projects including taking a lead role in AHDB’s position on water abstraction. Anne has considerable experience of Knowledge Exchange in many forms and previously grew
organic potatoes commercially in Northern Ireland. Anne represents AHDB Potatoes across Western and Southern England and Wales. She delivers campaigns, projects and initiatives throughout the supply chain. Focus areas include agronomy, crop protection, PCN, and crop nutrition, as well as the SPot Farm programme in the West (Heal Farms) and South West (Dillington Estate).

Claire Hodge, Knowledge Exchange Manager - Scotland

e: ¦ t: 07771 798 552

Claire's role is diverse working with a broad spectrum of people involved in promoting, improving and challenging the potato industry. She follows research projects through and looks at key outcomes which can be used by farmers to help improve potato production. Based in Scotland and working closely with the seed industry her focus areas include Aphid and Virus, Blackleg, Blight and Damage awareness. Claire looks at best practice and help deliver these messages to everyone involved with the potato crop. She has 10 years’ experience in the industry and has a commercial and practical background in potato production.

Claire is the AHDB contact at SPot Farm Scotland, Bruce Farms

Graham Bannister, Knowledge Exchange Manager - Northern England and the West

e: ​t: 07580 704673

Knowledge Exchange Managers are the first point of call for farmers and those in the supply chain who are looking to access the range of technical services and tools funded by their levy. Graham has many years’ experience in the farming sector with over a decade gained in the potato industry. Recently he worked for fresh potato supplier Greenvale in a role aimed at securing quality ware potatoes from Scottish suppliers. He has now returned to his Yorkshire home and is looking forward to working with growers, agronomists and the supply chain across Northern England and the West.

SPot Farms

Read more about our SPot Farm programme here

Knowledge campaigns

AHDB Potatoes communications activities are focussed around a series of knowledge campaigns including Fight against Blight, Potato Cyst Nematode (PCN) aphids and virus, soil, water, nutrition, energy, storage and business improvement. The Knowledge Transfer team takes a lead on identifying and translating legislative changes that may have impact on the potato industry and communicating actions to levy payers.

A fundamental step towards improving business efficiency and profitability is to understand what your true cost of production is. The AHDB Potatoes Arable Benchmark model enables you to assess the profitability of your potato business. A full appreciation of your production costs enables you to analyse risk and opportunity, and make strategic decisions based on return on investment, capital input and land commitment.   

Plant health is a particular concern to the potato industry and will be a focus for activity in 2011/12. There are many reasons for this including a reduced armoury for crop protection following the review of EU Directive 91/414, recent changes to statutory control of PCN and ingress of exotic non-quarantine diseases. AHDB Potatoes have already responded to many of the challenges by initiating new R&D and the Knowledge Transfer team will be communicating R&D outputs to ensure awareness is widespread and best practice messages reach all levy payers.

We deliver a range of newslettersevents, workshops and forums to ensure all levy payers have opportunities to engage with AHDB Potatoes research and interact with the team. We are introducing a range of digital communications to enable easier access to our guides and best practice brochures via our website, which will be a hub for an increasing number of online tools to support the potato industry.


AHDB Potatoes is focused on delivering relevant and impactful messages to the right person at the right time and provides the vital link between research, development, knowledge and the levy payer to achieve maximum business benefit.

We have a small communications team of skilled individuals passionate about the potato industry. Their aim is to work closely with levy payers associations, trade bodies and other stakeholders to ensure that every project, communication, publication is carried out for the benefit of the levy payer and wider potato industry.

Jimmy Phillips, Senior Marcomms Manager

As Senior Marcomms Manager Jimmy Phillips leads AHDB Potatoes communications with levy payers. This involves direct communication and the long term management of the press, including the circulation of research and SPot farm results. The Marcomms team are always interested to hear from those in the industry and develop discourse which leads to improvements for levy payers. Please contact Jimmy using the details below:

e: ¦ t: 0247 647 8933 M: 07748622320

Stuart Baxter, Marketing Communications Executive

​e: t: 02476 478926

Our Knowledge Campaigns:

Business Improvement

Crop Nutrition


Plant health

Soil and Water