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Agri-food funding round-up

Posted on 01/03/2019

Find out about the latest funding calls of relevance to the agriculture and food & drink manufacturing sectors. Updated 22nd April.

Updated: 22nd April 2019

The funding landscape can be complex, so KTN’s Agri-Food team have compiled a list of some of the latest funding calls of relevance for the agriculture and food & drink manufacturing sectors, bringing them together in one place – find out more below.

The team will be happy to help if you wish to find out more about these or other funding opportunities, need help finding collaborative partners, or are seeking advice on how to apply for funding. Please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: February 2019

Competition closes: 24.04.19 at 12:00pm.

Smart is the new name for Innovate UK’s ‘Open grant funding’ programme. Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £20 million in the best game-changing or disruptive ideas with a view to commercialisation. All proposals must be business focused, rather than pure research. Applications can come from any area of technology (including arts, design, media or creative industries), science or engineering and be applied to any part of the economy.

Click here to find out more.

EIT Food Seedbed Pre-Accelerator Programme

Closing date: 26.04.19.

The EIT Food Seedbed Pre-Accelerator Programme supports aspiring entrepreneurs to determine whether there is a market for products or services that utilise innovative agri-food technologies. This multi-location pre-accelerator programme will train and support up to 20 teams over a 4-month period. Selected teams will be provided with the tools, connections, mentors and expertise to help them better understand the needs of their customers and validate their business idea. At the end of the program, participants with have the opportunity to pitch their idea to a panel of industry experts to not only receive constructive feedback but also the chance to win one of three equity-free cash prizes.

Click here to find out more.

Postcode Lotteries Green Challenge

Applications close: 01.05.19.

Green-minded entrepreneurs and sustainable start-ups are being urged to apply for this year’s Postcode Lotteries Green Challenge. The winner of the competition will win €500,000 of funding to develop their business. The runner up will win €200,000, and three other finalists will land €100,000 each. The competition focuses on starting, innovative and creative entrepreneurs. Green products or services that contribute towards a more sustainable planet and score highly on design, user friendliness and quality are eligible to win.

Click here to find out more

UKRI-BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnerships

Application deadline: 01.05.19 at 16:00.

UKRI-BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTP) provide PhD training in areas of research relevant to  UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the Biotechnology and Biological Science Research Council’s (UKRI-BBSRC)  remit and priority research areas. Building on the two previous DTP programmes, institution-level or multi-institution bids are invited to apply to the third phase of UKRI-BBSRC DTPs. It is anticipated that up to 15 DTPs will be awarded. The funding for each four-year studentship will include £5,000 p.a. research training support costs, as well as student stipend and fees at standard research council levels. Each doctoral candidate will take a three-month internship during their PhD, to experience working in an area not directly related to their PhD project.

Click here to find out more.

UK and Canada: enhancing industrial productivity

Registration closes: 02.05.19 at 12:00pm

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £5 million to develop innovative technologies targeting global markets with Canadian partners. The UK and Canada are running a joint grant funding competition under the EUREKA framework. This will support collaborative research and development (CR&D) projects, which should result in a new product, industrial process or service. Projects must be innovative, involve a technological risk and target large global markets.

They welcome proposals from advanced manufacturing businesses, food and drink processers, and automation and artificial intelligence (AI) innovators, including those applying ‘AI for design’ techniques.

Click here to find out more.

BactiVac Network – Round 3 Catalyst Funding for Pump Priming Projects

Applications close: 05.05.19, 12 midnight (GMT).

Funding is available to support academics in bacterial vaccinology to explore new approaches and strategies to advance their vaccines in partnership with LMICs and industry, and acquire the data to support substantive funding applications. Following the award of up to £1 million of additional funding from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC)’s Global AMR Innovation Fund (GAMRIF), BactiVac Network are particularly interested in funding projects in this round of funding that advance the ability to tackle the global challenge of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) through the development of vaccines against bacterial pathogens.

Click here to find out more.

EIT Food Innovation Prizes (Innovation Grants Scheme)

Application deadline: 05.05.19.

Do you have an idea that could transform the agriculture, fisheries and food sector? Apply for an Innovation Prize and receive up to €10,000 of equity-free funding. The Innovation Prizes competition is one of Europe’s largest startup competitions in the agrifood vertical. The Innovation Prizes are awarded to entrepreneurs and early-stage startups to support the development of new products and services which can help transform our food system; making it healthier, more sustainable and more trusted.

Click here to find out more.

A Combined Food Systems Approach to Scaling-up Interventions...

Application deadline: 07.05.19 at 16:00 BST

A Combined Food Systems Approach to Scaling-up Interventions to Address the Double Burden of Malnutrition

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), through the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) Collective Programme, is pleased to announce investment of up to £8.5 million to support interdisciplinary proposals that seek to work across the food system to reduce the global double burden of malnutrition. Proposals must be led by UK researchers normally eligible for UKRI funding, and partnerships with eligible Co-Investigators based in any of the DAC countries (see funding page for further details) are required.

Click here to find out more.

Discovery Fellowships

Application deadline: 09.05.19 at 16:00.

BBSRC Discovery Fellowships (previously BBSRC Future Leader Fellowships) provide support for researchers wishing to undertake independent research and gain leadership skills. Awards are for three years and it is expected that up to 10 fellowships will be awarded, each of a value of up to £300,000 (80% fEC).

Click here to find out more.

David Phillips Fellowship

Application deadline: 09.05.19 at 16:00.

The David Phillips Fellowship (DPF) will provide support for researchers wishing to establish their first independent research group. Awards are for five years, and include personal salary and a significant research support grant to enable fellows to establish their own independent research group. It is expected that up to five fellowships will be awarded, each at a value of up to £1 million (80% fEC).

Click here to find out more.

TERRA - The Good and Ag Tech Accelerator

Application deadline: 12.05.19.

TERRA is a global innovation accelerator fuelling ground-breaking transformation in the Food & Agriculture industry. The program is open to applications from startups that are focused in the food and/or agriculture industry with seed to Series B funded startups preferred. Your product, service, or technology should already be active in market, and you must be able to travel to San Francisco for the Kick-Off and Demo Day.

Click here to find out more.

Agri Tech Skills call in York, North Yorkshire & East Riding and Humber LEP

Closing date: 21.05.19.

A call has been launched to run a project to deliver activities within farming businesses to allow them to develop new processes and systems in the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding and Humber LEP areas. Projects will be expected to demonstrate how they will develop mechanisms to identify and engage with rural businesses who have the ambition to increase profitability and resilience.

Click here to find out more.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

The KTP programme 2019 to 2020 is run continuously throughout the year.

Registration opens: 04.04.19. Closing date: 29.05.19.
Registration opens: 30.05.19. Closing date: 24.07.19.
Registration opens: 25.07.19. Closing date: 02.10.19.
Registration opens: 03.10.19. Closing date: 11.12.19.
Registration opens: 12.12.19. Closing date: 05.02.20.
Registration opens: 06.02.20. Closing date: 01.04.20.

Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP)  links your organisation with one of the UK’s world-class knowledge bases (a university or research organisation) to power strategic innovation projects, embed expertise and drive commercial growth. needed to develop it, a Knowledge Transfer Partnership may be the answer. It creates a dynamic three-way collaboration – between a business or not for profit organisation, a UK university or research organisation, and a suitably qualified graduate – to help realise a strategic innovation project, bring about transformative change and embed new capability.

Click here to find out more.

Agri-tech Catalyst round 8: agriculture and food systems innovation

Registration closes: 29:05.19 at 12:00pm. Competition closes: 05.06.19 at 12:00pm.

UK businesses and research organisations can apply for a share of up to £3 million from the Department for International Development (DFID) for early stage feasibility studies, mid stage industrial research and late stage experimental development projects with partners in eligible African countries. Projects must work on agri-tech and food chain innovations with partners in eligible African countries.

The presentations from KTN’s Agri-Tech Catalyst Round 8 events are now available for download and a partnering tool has been launched.

Click here to find out more.

Future Leaders Fellowships - Round 3

Mandatory outline proposal closes: 02.05.19. Deadline for full applications: 30.05.19 at 16:00.
Expected closing dates for future rounds: Round Four: October 2019. Round Five: May 2020. Round Six: October 2020.

This cross-UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) scheme will support early career researchers and innovators with outstanding potential in universities, UK registered businesses, and other research and user environments including research councils’ institutes and laboratories. The support offered will be long-term and flexible and will provide comprehensive package of support, including the fellow’s salary and justified research, staff and training costs, with seven years of support available on a 4+3 model, with a review in year four.

Click here to find out more.


2019/20 Strategic Longer and Larger (sLoLa) grants: Frontier bioscience

Call opens: 15.04.19. Registration deadline (mandatory): 14.05.19. Outline applications deadline: 30.07.19.

The BBSRC sLoLa call will support creative, curiosity-driven research that addresses important fundamental questions in biology. Proposals are expected to be ambitious and have the potential to lead to a significant enhancement in our understanding of living systems and how they function, the ‘Rules of Life’. The sLoLa scheme requires integrated multidisciplinary research that can only be undertaken through a single coherent programme of work. BBSRC is running webinars about this competition on 15th April and 2nd May 2019.

Click here to find out more.

Understanding and countering bacterial plant diseases

Call opens: 15.05.19 (TBC). Call closes: 31.07.19 (TBC).

BBSRC, on behalf also of Defra, NERC and the Scottish Government, will soon be launching a call for research to address threats to UK plant health and biosecurity from bacterial diseases. This call will complement the work of the recently established BRIGIT consortium on Xylella fastidiosa by supporting multidisciplinary studies of a variety of bacterial diseases of plants. Up to £13M is available to fund high quality research projects. Please note that the closing date may be subject to change.

Click here to find out more.

GIMA Innovators' Seed Corn Fund

Closing date: 16.08.19.

The Garden Industry Manufacturer’s Association (GIMA) offers annual grant of £6,000 to help launch innovative, exciting, never before seen products for the gardening market. If you have a new product or invention, and would like to showcase it to leading manufacturers, retailers and distributors in the gardening industry, then this could be just the help you need to get your product to market.

Click here to find out more.

Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU)

Call closes: 04.09.19 at 17:00 CET.

The Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU) is a €3.7 billion Public-Private Partnership between the EU and the Bio-based Industries Consortium. Operating under Horizon 2020, this EU body is driven by the Vision and Strategic Innovation and Research Agenda (SIRA) developed by the industry. This funding call includes 21 topics.

The scientific priorities for 2019 are the following:

  1. Foster the supply of sustainable biomass feedstock to feed both existing and new value chains;
  2. Optimise efficient processing for integrated biorefineries through research, development and innovation;
  3. Develop innovative bio-based products for identified market applications;
  4. Create and accelerate the market-uptake of bio-based products and applications.

Click here to find out more.

Most Innovative European Biotech SME Awards

Closing date: 19.09.19.

EuropaBio invites biotech start-ups and SMEs across Europe to apply for the 10th edition of the Most Innovative European Biotech SME Award – a unique annual initiative recognising biotech innovation and its contribution to society. SMEs can apply in three categories: healthcare, agricultural or industrial biotechnology. Two companies will be shortlisted in each category by a Jury of biotech and SME experts, with the winners celebrated during a landmark event held in Brussels on the 6th November. Each winner will also receive €10,000 prize money and two years free EuropaBio membership (runners-up also receive the latter), in addition to European-level exposure and visibility as well as press coverage.

Click here to find out more.

Landscape Decisions - mathematical and statistical challenges

NERC have pre-announced a call for proposals that develop new mathematics and build on existing models or develop new model solutions for making land-use decisions with the aim of setting a route to develop decision-making tools for end-users such as policymakers and landowners.

The full Announcement of Opportunity, with details of how to apply, will be available in early June 2019. Funds of up to £1·3 million will be available for this call. Grants will be for up to £300,000 (at 80% full economic cost) to run for up to three years. The closing date for expressions of interest will be early July 2019, with the deadline for full proposals in early September 2019.

Further information on the Landscape Decisions programme can be found here.

BactiVac Catalyst Training Awards

The call for applications is an open call, you can apply at any time. This scheme will be run up to August 2021.

Catalyst funding is available to support training opportunities and exchanges, prioritising those involving LMIC members and academic/industrial partners, for the transfer of knowledge and skills in bacterial vaccinology. Up to £6,000 per award is available and each training visit is expected to be up to three months in duration. The aim of this funding scheme will be to support members to train in vaccine research & development (R&D), targeting the main preclinical to clinical area of focus for BactiVac.

Click here to find out more.

STFC Bridging for Innovators (B4I) programme

The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is a multidisciplinary research organisation that funds and operates a number of large science facilities offering research and development access to commercial users. Through these facilities, and their expert staff, they can provide access to advanced experimental and computational tools to address challenges in all aspects of the food production and packaging supply chain. Their £8 million Bridging for Innovators (B4I) programme is specifically designed to help companies overcome difficult product, manufacturing or process performance issues by providing access to advanced analytical technologies, supporting expertise and capabilities through STFC’s large scale science facilities located around the UK.

Click here to find out more.

HSBC SME Loan Fund

HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced minimum pot of £300 million to support the UK’s agriculture businesses. It also includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.

Click here to find out more.

Horizon 2020 Calls

Horizon 2020 is the EU’s multi-billion research and innovation funding scheme running from 2014 to 2020. The UK government has issued some documents to clarify the UK’s eligibility to participate in Horizon 2020 if there is no Brexit deal.

KTN has a range of training videos for UK companies in how to write a successful project proposal for European funding.

UK businesses benefitting from Horizon 2020 research funding are urged to register their details with the government so they can continue to receive funding if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Currently open calls include:

Fast Track to Innovation – aims to accelerate the market uptake of ground-breaking innovations by providing funding through an open, accessible scheme that nurtures ideas from consortia of innovators of all types and sizes from across Europe. Various deadlines throughout 2019. Click here to find out more.

Horizon 2020: SME Instrument – Phase 1 – The SME Instrument supports high-risk, high-potential small and medium-sized enterprises to develop and bring to market new products, services and business models that could drive economic growth. Closes: 04.11.20. Click here to find out more.

Horizon 2020: SME Instrument – Phase 2 – The SME Instrument supports high-risk, high-potential small and medium-sized enterprises to develop and bring to market new products, services and business models that could drive economic growth. Closes: 07.10.20. Click here to find out more.