It’s with deep regret that AgriFutures Australia has had to announce the cancellation of the 2022 evoke AG. conference in Sydney on 15 March.

Whilst it is disappointing that the region’s agrifood tech community will not be able to connect in person, the health and wellbeing of the evokeAG .community – delegates, speakers, event staff and suppliers – is the most important priority. Given the current COVID outbreak in NSW, now is not the time to place unnecessary pressure on frontline workers, the healthcare system, and supply chain. This is a time to be thinking of others and placing the community at the heart of everything we do.

As a member of the evokeAG steering committee, I fully support the decision. I also acknowledge the sterling work done by the team at AgriFutures and the impact of making such a decision can have. It’s a very unfortunate sign of the times that those of us in New Zealand know only too well. Since our own move to Traffic Light Red on Sunday, my Inbox has been slammed with news of postponed and cancelled events across New Zealand over the coming weeks. These surely are challenging times.

Looking ahead, Wharf42 is looking forward to working with the AgriFutures evokeAG team, as major sponsors of the 2035 Oceania Summit. We are working to bring both New Zealand and Australia’s emerging agrifood tech ecosystem together to discuss one of the world’s biggest long-term challenges; how to support farmers and growers across the globe continue to produce nutritious and affordable food in the face of our changing climate. Over the coming weeks, we will be sharing details across our social media platforms about some significant developments in this space.

It’s a challenge that COVID will not slow down.