Crops

Plants and crops underpin the health, wellbeing and food security of our growing population. We depend on them through direct consumption or indirectly via livestock consumption.

Plants and crops play a key role through ecosystem services that improve our quality of life. The economic, social and environmental value of crops, forests and horticulture is estimated to around £9bn per year.

The UK is home of some of the highest crop yields in the world, where 1 ha of land in the UK is equivalent to 2 ha elsewhere in the world. That’s down to the UK’s favourable climate, knowledgeable farmers and agronomists, its world leading universities and R&D organisations, and companies. New and old challenges make innovation in the sector an increasingly important matter. The agriculture land is under pressure due to urbanisation for a growing population, the ban of pesticides by the EU in recent years has been putting entire crops at risk of failure, a pressure to decrease the use of chemical fertilisers that are the leading cause of pollution in the production of plants and crops, unpredictable and extreme weather events due to climate change, combined with a decrease of seasonal workers in agriculture due to Brexit and more recently COVID-19. This means increasing land productivity in a sustainable manner is key for the future of agriculture in the UK.

We’ve got expertise across the plant and crop industry and research. The plants and crops team has key connections with many stakeholders within industry, academia, government and others to enable consortia building and provide clear direction to those looking to innovate in this area of AgriFood. Our experience includes but isn’t limited to crop breeding, integrated pest management, precision and smart agriculture, vertical farming, biostimulants, biopesticides, helping to improve crop productivity and sustainability.

Pedro Carvalho

Our Crops Expert

Pedro Carvalho

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Current Crops funding opportunities

Farming Innovation Programme - large R&D partnership projects

Opens: 30/03/2022 Closes: 29/06/2022

UK registered businesses can apply for a share of £8 million for large R&D partnership projects, from the industry-led R&D Partnerships Fund, a part of the Farming Innovation Programme.

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Farming Innovation Programme: research starter pilot, EoI Round 2

Opens: 23/05/2022 Closes: 06/07/2022

Farming, growing or forestry businesses based in England can apply for a share of up to £1 million for feasibility projects.

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Africa-UK AgriFood Innovation Mission 2020 - Week 6
Recorded: 25th August

Africa-UK AgriFood Innovation Mission 2020 - Week 6

KTN and Innovate UK are pleased to launch stage two of the virtual missions in July and August as part of the GCRF AgriFood Africa Programme.

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New Global Alliance Innovation Exchange Challenges for Africa - now open! Deadline to apply: 8 July 2022

27.05.2022

New Global Alliance Innovation Exchange Challenges for Africa - now open! Deadline to apply: 8 July 2022

Global Alliance Africa is supporting companies to find innovative solutions to AgriFood challenges in Africa. Challenges include preventing crop damage caused by migrating birds, and finding affordable and easy to maintain solutions for Sorghum grain threshing (and other grains). Deadline to apply: 8 July 2022.

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Young Innovators Success Stories: Marcus Comaschi, GyroPlant, South East

21.02.2022

Young Innovators Success Stories: Marcus Comaschi, GyroPlant, South East

When Marcus received the Young Innovators Award from Innovate UK and The Prince’s Trust, his time was split between his day job as a freelance design engineer and progressing his concept for a sustainability-focused vertical farming innovation.

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