Transforming food production
An overview of the government’s challenge to industry and research to transform how we produce food to feed the expanding global population.
What is the transforming food production challenge?
It is predicted that 60 percent more food will be needed worldwide by 2050 to feed the increasing global population.
To do this, we need to be able to produce resilient and sustainable food more efficiently. This will reduce emissions and pollution, minimise waste and improve soil.
The UK is home to research and industries at the forefront of understanding crops and livestock. We are already a global leader in environmental management and earth observation, sensors, big data, artificial intelligence and robotics. By funding research and innovation projects that build on our strengths, we can transform the precision agricultural sector and meet the challenge.
It will also help create high-value jobs, growth and export opportunities.
What’s the investment?
Up to £90 million of funding is available to help businesses, researchers and industry to transform food production, meet the growing demand and move towards net zero emissions by 2040.
What are the opportunities?
Opportunities will be available to UK based researchers and businesses.
Funding will be invested in:
Future Food Production Systems
We will help transform food production systems, improve productivity and sustainability, and help the industry move towards achieving net zero emissions by 2040. The investment will stimulate establishment of novel high value production systems to position UK technologies at the forefront of new industries.
Science and Technology into Practice
We will strengthen connections between researchers, innovative businesses and practitioners to accelerate the development and adoption of data-driven precision approaches to bridge the productivity gap whilst moving towards achieving net-zero emission by 2040.
We will fund ambitious feasibility projects to test early stage ideas and demonstrator projects that show near market solutions at commercial scale and across different production environments.
A programme to identify and accelerate shared international priorities and help build export opportunities for pioneering agricultural-technologies and innovations with partners overseas.
We will create new approaches to working with the investment community to explore and accelerate the commercial potential of new technologies and attract investments into UK research and innovation.
Smart micro growth chambers to drive indoor farming revolution
In the future, techniques such as indoor farming could revolutionise the production of certain crops. The ability to produce multiple harvests per season, without the risks of damage and reduced yields from pests and diseases, and with minimal space requirements could completely change food production and nutrition in many areas of the globe.
What lies beneath? Improving potato yield forecasting and crop management
As part of UK Research & Innovation’s (UKRI) Transforming Food Production (TFP) challenge, Lincoln-based B-hive Innovations Ltd and Shropshire’s Harper Adams University have been awarded £391,000 for the development of their Tuberscan project, which aims to use ground-penetrating radar to improve the level of crop knowledge and management of potato crops before they are harvested.