Running throughout the event was a series of seminars and practical demonstrations. Interest, and so attendance, at these varied from a handful of delegates to a full house. But there was certainly something to appeal to everyone.
Held in three adjacent areas, these were divided into three themes: business, technical and practical. Tickets to all three were bookable in advance which lead to some angst for those who turned-up on the day as the organisers indicated some were sold out. However, due to a high number of ‘no-shows’ everyone who wanted to attend managed to, even if they had to stand.
|Predictably the most popular were the technical seminars covering bedbugs and rodenticide resistance.
Clive Boase from the Pest Management Consultancy chaired the first of these and the bedbug working party from the Greater London Pest Liaison Group (GLPLG) presented their Good Practice Guides to combat this pest which they estimate is increasing by 25% per year.
With the Olympics just three years away, concerted action is needed. The series of five Good Practice leaflets will be available off the NPAP section of the CIEH website shortly. Keep an eye on the Pest website as news of their availability will also be posted here.
The rodenticide resistance seminar, chaired by Adrian Meyer from Acheta, painted a somewhat worrying picture. With resistance on the increase and an ever-decreasing arsenal of available rodenticides, where does the future lie?
For those who suspect resistance the new tail-testing service would at least establish the facts but little seemed to be known as to how to go about this. Pest has identified this as an issue and will be finding out more from the laboratory involved.
Popularity of the practical sessions varied, but delegates were given a real ‘hands-on’ opportunity along with advice from the experts. Here the most popular were the sessions involving working at heights and the fitting of face masks, both presented by Brandon Training.
In the business theatre there were plenty of empty seats for the session on Increasing profits without cutting corners. The session was billed as covering marketing and revenue opportunities, identifying and satisfying your target audience, managing vehicles and using credit effectively.
Neither of the first two topics got a mention at the Thursday seminar but, for anyone running a fleet of vehicles there were some useful pointers on how to improve efficiency such as switching to vehicles with low CO2 emissions and therefore paying lower, or even no, road fund tax.
There were perhaps rather too many mentions of Ford and Ford vehicle brands and the Ford leasing scheme but if you could look past those the principles covered were valuable whatever type of fleet you run.
The session on finance by David Nash of Chancery Tax based in Milton Keynes was also useful if only to give some pointers on what questions to ask your own accountants. David was particularly keen that all businesses double-check that they are claiming all the allowances they are entitled to so that their tax bill is minimised.