Access keys

Skip to content Accessibility Home News, events and publications Site map Search Privacy policy Help Contact us Terms of use

£18M of Agri-Tech funding for UK-led projects

Copyright: iStock
News from: Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs

The Agri-Tech Catalyst, in which BBSRC is a major investor, has awarded 15 agricultural innovation projects a share of £18M to help accelerate agricultural innovation and their commercial viability.

This funding will help to support the growth of agricultural science and technology sectors in the UK, which already employs nearly four million people and is one of the world's fastest-growing markets.

The 15 projects will receive £12.1M funding from Government with £5.7M co-investment from industry. They are all led by UK companies and span three key areas of the agriculture sector – crops, livestock and aquaculture.

The Agri-Tech Catalyst, run by BBSRC and the Technology Strategy Board, forms part of the UK's Industrial Strategy for Agriculture – a long term plan and £160M government investment which sets out how the government, researchers and industry will build on the strengths of the UK agricultural technologies sector.

Names of the 15 Agri-tech Catalyst Award winning projects:

1) Antimicrobial technology to control disease in potato production


  • Advanced Pest Solutions Ltd (lead)
  • Agrico UK Limited
  • Branston Limited
  • McCain Food (GB) Limited
  • Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture (SASA)
  • Scottish Agronomy Limited

2) Preservation and sequencing technology to address food security and production efficiency in the poultry sector


  • Cobb-Europe (lead)
  • The Roslin Institute

3) New strawberries optimised for growing without soil


  • East Malling Services limited (lead)
  • Agrovista UK Limited
  • Botanicoir Limited
  • CPM Retail Limited
  • East Malling Research
  • Sainsbury's Supermarkets Ltd

4) Using light to extend the shelf-life of fresh produce


  • Finlay Flowers UK Limited (lead)
  • Adas UK Limited
  • Lambda Photometrics Ltd
  • May Barn Horticultural Consultancy Limited
  • North Bank Growers Limited
  • Nutricycle Limited
  • The University of Nottingham
  • Wight Salads Group Limited

5) An automated system for precision application of fertiliser and plant growth compounds


  • Growhow UK Limited (lead)
  • Adas UK Limited
  • Chris Harry-Thomas Consulting
  • Hill Court Farm Research
  • Patchwork Technology Limited
  • Precise Crop Nutrition Limited
  • Syngenta Seeds Ltd

6) Developing technology for an organic natural based pesticide


  • Hockley International Limited (lead)
  • Almac Sciences Limited
  • Bangor University

7) Improving efficiency and reducing environmental harm of fertiliser production


  • ITM Power (Trading) Limited (lead)
  • BPE Design and Support Limited
  • FERA Limited
  • The University of Sheffield
  • Waitrose Limited

8) Wheat research and breeding project to improve food security in India and Pakistan


  • KWS UK Limited (lead)
  • Global Crop Innovations PTY Limited
  • Indian Agricultural Research Institute
  • University of Sydney

9) Improving the production of farmed salmon to reduce its environmental impact


  • Marine Harvest (Scotland) Limited (lead)
  • Biomar Limited
  • Pharmaq Limited
  • University of Stirling

10) Ground and aerial sensors to improve wheat production and breeding


  • Masstock Arable (UK) Limited (lead)
  • RAGT Seeds Limited
  • University of Nottingham Institute for Enterprise and Innovation

11) Increasing the efficiency and quality of strawberries grown without soil


  • PlantWorks Limited (lead)
  • Agrovista UK Limited
  • Berry Gardens Limited
  • East Malling Research

12) Protecting peas and beans from beetles without blanket insecticide spraying


  • Processors and Growers Research Organisation (lead)
  • BASF Public Limited Company
  • Exosect Limited
  • Oecos
  • Rothamsted Research

13) Optimising 'big data' to drive improvements in crop production and utilisation


  • Produce World Group Limited (lead)
  • Cranfield University

14) Breeding lamb for more taste and less waste by scanning live animals


  • WM Morrisons Supermarkets PLC (lead)
  • Scotland's Rural College (SRUC)

15) Technology to automatically monitor pigs for the early detection of health and welfare problems


  • Zoetis (lead)
  • Harbro Limited
  • Innovent UK Limited
  • Newcastle University
  • RAFT Solutions Ltd


Tags: bioeconomy commercialisation farming press release