NORTH Northumberland MP Sir Alan Beith has called on Northumberland’s farmers and food businesses to put themselves forward for a slice of a £15million fund on offer to anyone who can come up with ways to transform food manufacturing and reduce waste.
The money is part of a Government drive to support pioneering research and development that will help to unlock the huge potential of the UK’s farming, food and drink sector and drive the economic recovery.
Up to £15million is available in grants for larger businesses to invest in projects that will increase the efficiency, sustainability and competitiveness of food processing and manufacturing.
A further £500,000 will also be available to small and medium-sized businesses, through grants of up to £25,000.
Sir Alan said: “We have excellent farm produce in Northumberland, and some fantastic food businesses. They really are some of the best in the country.
“Across Northumberland, people involved in food and farming are innovating and showing the way forward for the future of the sector.
“I hope that businesses will put themselves forward for funding, as this money can help our economy go from strength to strength.”
Previous recipients of this type of grant include a team based at Heriot-Watt University, who used ultrasound to improve the quality and nutritional value of bread and cakes while making production more energy efficient.
For more information, visit www.defra.gov.uk/news/2012/03/14/transform-food-manufacturing