£15 Million Research and Development Competition to Focus on Sustainable Protein Production

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The Technology Strategy Board – in partnership with Defra, the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and the Scottish Government – is launching a collaborative research and development competition with up to £15 million available to invest in projects focusing on the challenge of Sustainable Protein Production.

The Technology Strategy Board – in partnership with Defra, the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and the Scottish Government – is launching a collaborative research and development competition with up to £15 million available to invest in projects focusing on the challenge of Sustainable Protein Production.

The initiative is open to all UK-based companies and research organisations, either through business-to-business or science-to-business collaborations. Project proposals, which must be business-led, should focus on either or both of the following areas:

  •     Increasing the domestic supply of sustainably produced vegetable protein for feeding farmed animals (including land and marine based aquaculture), and
  •     Increasing the efficiency of production and sustainability of domestically supplied animal and fish protein for food and reducing waste in the food chain to the point of retail sale.

Project proposals could include, but are not limited to, innovative solutions addressing one or more of the areas listed below. The Technology Strategy Board will be seeking a balanced portfolio of proposals.

  •     Plant breeding & genetic improvement of existing and novel feed protein sources;
  •     Novel sources of protein for farmed animals and fish;
  •     Crop production, storage & processing to improve usable protein yield, including co-product utilisation and reduced wastage;
  •     Increasing the efficiency of protein production (meat & milk) from grassland and forage based systems, with particular reference to reducing net environmental impact;
  •     Animal genetics, digestion and gut function, reproduction and fertility;
  •     Animal nutrition, feeds, feed additives, feed processing and improved feeding management;
  •     Rumen microbiology and function;
  •     Animal health and welfare & disease management;
  •     Novel and innovative animal production systems, including feeding, housing and waste management;
  •     Animal performance monitoring & data capture;
  •     Supply chain integration & enabling technologies & strategies to optimise commercial yield of animal protein and reduce waste;
  •     Environmental management technologies that support efficient livestock production and processing of livestock products.

As part of the competition process a series of one day consortium building workshops will take place, on 11, 15 and 17 February. These will provide a networking forum for potential participants to facilitate the development of project ideas. For further information about the competition, including details of the workshops, please visit the Competitions page of the Technology Strategy Board website at: http://www.innovateuk.org/competitions/competitionsearch.ashx.

To join the Sustainable Agriculture and Food Innovation Platform networking group please visit: https://ktn.innovateuk.org/web/sustainable-agriculture-and-food-innovation-platform/overview.

The partners in this competition for collaborative research and development programme – the Technology Strategy Board, Defra, BBSRC and the Scottish Government – are also partners in the Global Food Security programme.

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Nick Sheppard
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