Reports and accounts

Extracts from the accounts,
and links to the original documents

1995 2000 2005 2010
1996 2001 2006
1997 2002

1998 2003

1999 2004 2009


       The company is an executive Non-Departmental Public Body operating
        towards Next Steps lines and sponsored by the Ministry of
        Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF). HRI's purpose is to carry
        out research and development (R&D) work in support of horticulture
        and related industries and to exploit the results commercially.

        A Visiting Group to HRI reported its findings in February 1995.
        In summary, the Group expressed the view that overall HRI was
        continuing its strong tradition of excellence in British horticulture
        and agricultural research ...

        Average number of persons employed during the year
        in 1994 - 801,
        in 1995 - 767.

        MAFF invested UKP 9 million in HRI's restructuring building
        programme ...

        A bid for a supplementary investment of  UKP 1.8 million, for
        completion of the programme, was approved by MAFF, increasing the
        overall funding to UKP 44.242 million.

        HRI was one of many public sector research organisations to be
        subjected to the Government's Prior Options Review process.
        This process focuses on whether research needs to be undertaken by a
        public sector body or could be performed in the private sector; and
        whether there is scope for rationalisation with other public sector
        research establishments working in the same area. ...
        Any future changes in ownership must not prejudice HRI's capacity to
        provide what the UK horticultural industry and its other customers
        require. Successful privatisation would demand substantial financial
        resources and stability: at present these, and a sustainable cash
        flow are not in place ...

1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2009 2010

        The year presented a number of challenges but has been one in which
        the company has ended the year in a stronger position financially
        than in April 1996 ...

        By the end of the year there were clear signs of the scientific
        benfits of increased collaboration that are arising through the
        co-location of a larger number of scientists at Wellesbourne ...
        A strategy document
"HRI - The way Ahead 1997 Onwards" was endorsed
        by the Board in September 1996

        A visiting Group to HRI reported its findings ...

        As a result of the review, HRI's funding from BBSRC has been reduced
        by UKP 0.60 million phased over four years ...

        A new five-year Corporate Plan (1998-2003) will be published in 1998.

        The financial framework and assumptions within which HRI has
        operated to date have significantly changed and it can no longer
        support its infrastructure and activities without commercial
        income. ...

        During the 5 year period of the Corporate Plan, commercial income is
        forecast to rise from UKP 3.04 million in 1998/9 to UKP 8.96 million in
        2002/03. ...

        HRI has developed a policy statement on the issues surrounding
        Genetically Modified (GM) Crops. Spokespersons among HRI staff have
        been identified and trained and have played an actice important role
        in the GM debate
1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2009 2010

       The total general fund income for 1999/2000 fell in comparison with
        the previous year by 2.7% before amortisation of capital grants.

        Expenditure has increased by  UKP 0.882 million to UKP 25.885 million before
        exceptional items. ...

        The directors expect continuing difficulties with performance in the
        current financial year.

        It is fully expected that the company will return to surplus by the
        end of the financial year 2001/2. ...

        HRI has reorganised its scientific management to develop 15
        multidisciplinary teams, which span and integrate work across all
        its sites.


        The total general fund income fell in comparison with
        the previous year by 5.8% before amortisation of capital grants.

        The performance targets set out in the Corporate Plan (1998-2003)
        have proved unattainable. ...

        During the financial year ... HRI embarked on a major cost-saving and
        restructuring exercise ... losing 145 staff posts and closing one of
        HRI's six sites, Stockbridge House in North Yorkshire.  ...

        ...revise the income projections from HRI's sales and marketing arm,

        ... overambitious projections coupled with a lack of focus ...

1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2009 2010

        The total general fund income fell in comparison with
        the previous year by 5.0% before amortisation of capital grants.

        Expenditure has decreased by UKP 2.827 million to UKP 23.100 million before
        exceptional items.

        Staff costs have fallen following the major restructuring exercise

        A deficit of approximately UKP 0.600 million is forecast for the 2002/03
        financial year.

        A Quinquennial Review is currently in progress.


       The total general fund income fell in comparison with
        the previous year by 2.55% before amortisation of capital grants.

        HRI has made a deficit for the year of UKP 0.396 million.

        A new Conference Centre at East Malling was completed in July 2002.

        The new Genomics Resource Centre, including a fully equipped
        state-of-the-art Genomics laboratory, is due for completion in June
        2003. Both projects are being funded (circa UKP 2.5 million each )
        through Defra and in the case of the Conference Centre with UKP 0.5 million
        additional support from East Malling Trust for Horticultural
        Research. [c.f. "A UKP 13 million plant and microbial genomics unit
        was established at the John Innes Centre (JIC) in July 2001"]

Report from the Quinquennial Review Team was published on 23
        September 2002. The Minister for Food Farming and Sustainable Energy
        announced the conclusions. ...

        The Minister's announcement paved the way for preliminary
        negotiations between Defra and the University of Warwick for the
        merger with a
"New HRI".

        The merger is expected to take place on 1 April 2004.

1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2009 2010

       On the 1 April 2004 control of the company transferred to
        the University of Warwick.

        HRI's purpose is to carry out research and
        development work and to promote the advancement of
        science in connection with horticulture and
        kindred industries, including forest trees, and to
        disseminate the results of such research for the public

        In order to put HRI on a more sound, sustainable and competitive
        basis, the Review team recommended that it should cease to be a
        public body sponsored by Defra and should be restructured as

        Summary of agreement between Defra and the University of Warwick
        The University will acquire control of the HRI company ...

        Defra will transfer its freeholds of the Wellesbourne and Kirton
        sites to the University. The University will make a financial
        contribution to the transfer of the sites equal to the values of
        the agricultural land and dwellings at Wellesbourne ( UKP .5 million)
        and Kirton ( UKP 2.5 thousand) as at 5 January 2004

        The University will undertake for a period of 15 years
        (Wellesbourne) or 20 years (Kirton) to pay a share of the proceeds
        to Defra should it subsquently decide to sell all or part of the
        Wellesbourne or Kirton sites or to undertake commercial development
        there ...

        (cf "If any part of the acquired land and buildings are disposed of by
        (the University within an agreed clawback period then the University
        (will be liable to pay 50% of the increase in value of the property
        (over to DEFRA."
        ( )

        Scientific Developments
        Opening of a new UKP 2.5 million Genomics Centre for Sustainable
        Horticulture at Wellesbourne

        Substantial amounts of competitive funding to develop important
        DNA-based micro-arrays and other tools for functional genomic
        studies ... to provide growers with improved quality crops having
        greater resistance to pests, diseases and environomental damage, as
        well as being of better quality and uniformity for consumers.

        Novel powder formulations of entomopathogenic fungi which can
        selectively kill the
Varroa mite.

        The whole genome of a baculovirus has been cloned into a system
        that will allow individual genes to be mutated or deleted.

        A new thermal time model to forecast
Sclerotinia disease in
        field-grown lettuce.

Trichoderma viride with fungicide and composted onion waste to
        control white rot in commercial
1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2009 2010


       On 31 July 2005 the HRI company transferred the business and assets
        of the Company to the University of Warwick for a consideration of
        UKP 1
        The financial result for HRI of the period's activities after the
        transfer to the University of Warwick was a deficit of UKP 3.782 million

        The assets of Horticulture Research International at the date of
        acquisition by the University of Warwick are summarised as follows       
  • Net assets UKP 5 million 
    comprised of (Book Value 31 July 2005)
  • Freehold Land and Buildings UKP 40 million   
  • minus UKP 9 million  depreciation        
  • plus Plant Machinery and Equipment UKP 4.8 million         
  • plus stocks, debtors and cash ( UKP million )        
  • minus deferred capital grants ( UKP 8 million )       
  • minus creditors ( UKP million )        
    The figures above were rounded by me, rch.
    For full and authentic details please refer to the original document

       Total Income UKP 20.4 million,
        Deficit for the financial year UKP 3.78 million

        HRI did not trade during the year.
        During the financial year and preceding financial year the Company
        did not trade and received no income and incurred no expenditure.
        Consequently during those years the Company made neigher a profit
        nor a loss.

7 January 2010

        rch notes that today, the goal posts moved.
its cost vs return to the economy.
"Food 2030, the Government's new food strategy" says that      
            "An independent assessment of economic impact of the
Scottish Crops Research Institute estimated a figure of 
             UKP 160 million per year return to the UK economy 
             from an
annual investment of approximately UKP 13 million."
1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2009 2010

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