Dr Mark Lyons, Alltech President and CEO.

Lyons on agriculture, climate and the fiscal response to Covid-19: “Listen to the experts”

The head of global agribusiness Alltech finds himself hosting the first virtual edition of his company’s popular annual industry conference. He discusses how food production can navigate “the next normal”, and why his $3 billion firm remains private even as it enters new areas of digital technology and medicine.

22nd May, 2020 - 14 min read

Surprisingly for an interview with the head of a global agricultural inputs company, my telephone discussion with Mark Lyons begins with reflections on event management in a time of pandemics. The president and CEO of Alltech is in the middle of his company’s week-long One: The Alltech Ideas Conference, which has this year turned into “Alltech One Virtual Experience”.

“A little bit more than two months before the event, we just felt we weren’t going to be able to deliver what we normally would want to,” Lyons says from Kentucky. International travel was shutting down around the globe and people were becoming uncomfortable with crowds, even in the...

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