Businesses in the UK are being invited to apply for a share of up to £15 million to look at more environmentally friendly and efficient ways to produce food.
Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), is providing the funding for feasibility studies and demonstration projects that help to turn new “data-driven, precision agriculture” technologies into practical solutions that could transform food production.
Better ways of working the land can lead to reduced emissions and pollution, less waste and improvements to the soil.
Projects seeking funding should undertake research in one or more areas, including:
- arable, such as cereals, field-scale vegetables or potatoes
- ruminants, such as beef, lamb, goat
- monogastrics, such as pork, poultry and eggs
- horticulture, including berries, apples, lettuce and tomatoes but not ornamentals
They should also have the potential to improve productivity and sustainability and contribute to the target of net zero emissions from agriculture by 2040.
The feasibility studies, for which up to £5 million is available, must look at the business models alongside technical feasibility and draw in expertise to do this as well as work with farmers to make sure solutions meet their needs.
Up to £10 million is available for demonstration projects, which must show the viability of combinations of precision solutions to transform food production, demonstrate solutions across different production environments, work with end users and produce evidence of technical feasibility and economic viability at commercial scale.
The competition is open until 26th February 2020.