Prof. Alison Kingston Smith

Centre Director

Prof. Alison Kingston Smith has a broad background in plant biochemistry and enzymology plus experience of molecular biology. Particular areas of interest include photosynthesis (carbon metabolism/carbohydrates), antioxidant systems and plant stress responses culminating in cell death. Current research is concerned with the impact of post-ingestion plant metabolism on rumen function.

Professor Leif Skot

Principal Investigator, Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences, Aberystwyth University. Leader of the Forage Plant Breeding team

My research is focussed on association genetics and genomic selection underpinning IBERS forage crop breeding programmes. Translational genomics with a view to facilitate the increasing in the rate of genetic gain for key traits in forage crops. Genetic mapping, SNP discovery and detection, analysis and exploitation of genetic diversity in forage crop species in the breeding programmes.


Dr Christina Marley

Dr Christina Marley is a Reader of Agricultural Systems and leads the Animal Systems Research Group at IBERS, Aberystwyth University. Research interests include the use of pasture-based ruminant systems – aiming to optimise the use of forages to improve animal health and productivity, whilst protecting the underlying soil.

Prof. John Moorby

Jon Moorby is Chair in Livestock Science at IBERS whose research aims to increase the efficiency of livestock production by increasing the proportion of feed nutrients being incorporated into useful products (meat and milk) and reducing the outputs of pollution products (methane and nitrogenous wastes).

He has more than 25 years’ experience working with dairy cows, beef cattle and sheep fed both conserved diets and fresh (grazed) forages and has been actively involved in assessing the potential benefits of novel varieties of grasses, cereals and legumes in partnership with plant breeders at IBERS.

He has been PI and Co-I on numerous EU, Defra, Welsh Government, research council, and industry-funded projects investigating the use of temperate and tropical forages and other feeds to optimise livestock production.

Dr Mariecia Fraser

Dr Mariecia Fraser is Reader in Upland Agroecology and Lead Scientist at the Pwllpeiran Upland Research Centre (which was created by Sir George Stapledon in 1933). 

Mariecia studied Animal Science at the University of Edinburgh, before going on to do a PhD in grazing ecology at the Macaulay Land Use Research Institute.  She has specialised in developing and testing management strategies for upland systems for over 25 years, and her current research interests include species and breed differences in diet selection, conservation grazing, greenhouse gas emissions from grazing animals, and the bio-energy potential of semi-natural grasslands.