The development of products such as methane reducing animal feeds and high protein crops has received a boost today (Monday 25 July) with Defra opening a £12.5m competition to support research and innovation.

Farmers, growers, foresters, businesses and researchers are invited to apply with projects to help increase domestic production of healthy and sustainable protein. The competition is part of the Government’s £270 million Farming Innovation Programme being run in partnership with UK Research and Innovation’s Transforming Food Production Challenge to help spark new ideas and collaboration across the sector.

The aim is to accelerate the development of novel and disruptive technologies to create new sources of resource efficient, low-emission proteins, leading to a more sustainable farming model for the future. This will help improve farming productivity, resilience in the sector and move existing agricultural sectors towards net zero.

This competition is split into ‘Feasibility’ projects (up to 2 years), and ‘Industrial Research’ (up to 5 years for breeding projects). Projects must have a value of £200k-£500k and £500k-£1m respectively.

 Altogether, Defra expects to spend around £600 million on grants and other support for farmers to invest in productivity, animal health and welfare, innovation, research and development over the next 3 years.

Guidance on how to apply is available at the following links:  

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