Business: Plants

Department for Science, Innovation and Technology written question – answered on 23rd February 2023.

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Photo of Kerry McCarthy Kerry McCarthy Shadow Minister (Climate Change and Net Zero)

To ask Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, what support her Department provides to innovative plant-based businesses, including financial support for research and development.

Photo of George Freeman George Freeman Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)

Funding has been available since 2010 for businesses developing novel solutions across the agrifood sector. Projects supported include novel crop production systems, plant proteins, meat alternative plant-based foods, and agroceuticals. Through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, approximately £90m has been committed since 2018 to support 'Transforming Food Production' projects.

Innovate UK has delivered support to grow the sustainable protein industry as part of Defra’s Farming Innovation Programme. This supports the creation of new sources of resource-efficient, low-emission proteins, including innovative plant-based solutions. Competitions currently open include the ‘Novel Low Emission Food Production Systems’ competition worth £16m jointly committed by Innovate UK and Biotechnology and Biotech Sciences Research Council, and Innovate UK’s £20m ‘Better Food for All’ competition

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