Food & Environment Research Agency (FERA)

Who we are

Fera's purpose is to support and develop a sustainable food chain, a healthy natural environment, and to protect the global community from biological and chemical risks. Fera has three distinct areas of responsibility for the agency:

  • Regulation, Policy and Risk: Fera carries statutory responsibilities for delivering policy and inspectorate functions in relation to Plant Health, Bee Health and Plant Varieties and Seeds. We also support policy development across government working closely with the lead authorities and agencies in those policy areas.
  • Research and Assurance: Fera is required by its public and private sector stakeholders to provide robust scientific evidence and thorough analysis to support them in both the strategic and day to day decisions they face.
  • Response and Recovery: Fera is an essential element of the nation's capability to respond to, and recover from, emergency situations. We have a specific remit to provide advice, guidance and support to those responsible for dealing with the consequences of an accidental or deliberate release of hazardous materials (HazMats) or Chemical, Biological, Radiological or Nuclear (CBRN) materials.

What we do

Our vision is to be the long term partner of choice to governments, industries and academia, in applied research, incident response and impartial advice, based on our trusted science, to secure the food chain and protect the environment from global threats. Fera has six core capabilities it draws upon to deliver its areas of responsibility.

  1. Horizon Scanning, Policy and Strategy Development
    Our horizon scanning, forecasting and strategic analysis skills contribute to national and international policy development in the key areas of global challenge and concern.
  2. Research and Innovation
    With many internationally recognised experts Fera is already an established leader in strategic and applied research in the areas of plants, wildlife, environment and food.
  3. Expert Identification, Measurement and Modelling
    From classical taxonomy and field ornithology through molecular methods to complex low level residue analysis, Fera's science teams utilise traditional and leading edge techniques to identify pests and diseases, detect contaminants and model outbreak impacts.
  4. Risk Assessment, Mitigation and Contingency Response
    We are at the forefront Internationally in development and utilisation of risk assessment methodologies in food safety, environmental fate and behaviour of chemicals, plant health, bee health and wildlife management.
  5. Better Regulation, Inspection, Auditing and Advice
    Through being close to Government and working with commercial clients Fera provides regulation that is recognised as being effective, proportionate and supported by best current advice.
  6. Development And Management of Globally Important Capabilities, Facilities, Collections and Data Sets
    As a recognized leader in food and environment research, regulation and response, our capabilities, resources and processes extend beyond our own activities and enable us to provide a global advisory capacity to others.

How to find out more

For comprehensive information on FERA and its activities click on the website link in the box on the left. To contact FERA click on the email link.

Food & Environment Research Agency (FERA)
The Information Centre
Sand Hutton
YO41 1LZ

Contact name:
Dr Angus Hearmon
Position:Director of External Affairs
Tel:+44 (0) 1904 462000
Fax:+44 (0) 1904 462111

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