Rick Mumford

Rick is the Director of Science at Fera Science Ltd, leading on science strategy and head of profession for over 350 scientists, who work across regulatory science and the agri-food supply chain.


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  • Area of expertise
    Plant Virology
  • Years of experience
  • Highest qualification
    PhD, FRSB

An author on more than 70 scientific publications, he is deputy director of the joint Fera-Newcastle University Institute for Agri-food Research & Innovation (IAFRI) and is chair of the UK Plant Sciences Federation. Rick has recently been appointed as a Visiting Professor of Practice at Newcastle University.

A plant virologist by training, Rick has over 20 years of experience as a practising plant health scientist. His major research interests include the development and deployment of diagnostics and their application in biosecurity and plant disease control. Rick has extensive experience of working with both government and industry, across agriculture, horticulture and into the wider environment (i.e. tree health), with a keen interest in the establishment of novel interdisciplinary approaches to disease surveillance and control, integrating life sciences with social research.

More about our science

We live in a changing world, one that faces global challenges such as climate change, increasing globalisation and population growth. In turn, these all affect our food security.

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Latest Papers and Articles

J. Turner, P. O'Neill, M. Grant, R.A. Mumford, R. Thwaites & D.J. Studholme (2017). Genome sequences of 12 isolates of the EU1 lineage of Phytophthora ramorum, a fungus-like pathogen that causes extensive damage and mortality to a wide range of trees and other plants. Genomics Data 12: 17-21.

F. Sabbadin, R. Glover, R. Stafford, Z. Rozado-Aguirre, N. Boonham, I. Adams, R. Mumford & R. Edwards (2017). Transcriptome sequencing identifies novel persistent viruses in herbicide resistant wild-grasses. Scientific Reports 7

N. Boonham, J. Tomlinson & R. Mumford (Eds). (2016). Molecular Methods in Plant Disease Diagnostics. CABI, Wallingford, UK. 200 pp.

R.A. Mumford, R.A. Macarthur & N. Boonham (2016). The role and challenges of new diagnostic technology in plant biosecurity. Food Security 8: 103-109.

A. MacLeod, G.D. Jones, H.M. Anderson & R.A. Mumford (2016). Plant health and food security, linking science, economics, policy and industry. Food Security 8: 17-25.

Events past and future

2017: Innovations In Plant Biosecurity (2017). Two-day International Conference hosted by Fera at NAFIC, Sand Hutton, York, UK

Rick and their team work with customers to deliver the following services within Fera...

Plant biosecurity consultancy.


Chemical Regulation

Fera works closely with plant protection product manufacturers to help develop effective, sustainable and safe chemical products that minimise ecosystem impacts and pollution, while maximising the beneficial effects for crops, plants and animals.

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Food Safety

Food Safety

With a large range of testing abilities, our multi-disciplinary approach gives an overall view of any food issue you may be facing, providing you with the complete information you need to make the strong decisions needed to address these issues.

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Environmental Services

Environmental Science

Fera’s wide ranging collaborations, partnerships and scientific work enable us to provide robust evidence, advice and support to organisations, businesses and individuals whose activities have an impact on the environment.

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