UK: £30m research facility investment in East Malling praised by MP

MP Tom Tugendhat says he is "immensely proud" of progress on a £30million horticultural science facility being built in the county.

The Tonbridge and Malling politician made the comments as he toured construction of research glasshouses and plant growth facilities at NIAB EMR - previously known as East Malling Research. MP Tom Tugendhat during his visit to NIAB EMR in East Malling
He was joined by Cllr Matt Boughton, leader of the local council.

The new facilities, home to Growing Kent & Medway, a partnership of leading businesses and the region’s universities to help promote the sector’s economic growth, are being funded through £18m secured from the government’s Strength in Places Fund, with a significant matching contribution from the East Malling Trust.

The new facilities include a research winery funded by a further £600,000 loan from the Growing Places Fund. The MP said: "I am immensely proud of the work being done by NIAB EMR and was excited to see the progress here in East Malling.

“Thanks to a century of research, Malling is a name synonymous with fruit growing around the world. The new facilities will ensure a positive future for the science being undertaken here in Kent and support fruit growers and horticulturalists in the UK and abroad. The research undertaken here will improve the industry’s productivity and mitigate the challenges presented by climate change to help get more locally-produced fruit into our diets.”

Research in the glasshouses will focus on developing new varieties and improving plant health and resistance to disease by undertaking controlled trials in crop production, breeding pathology, entomology, and plant health.

The work is the first phase of the Green Tech Hub for Advanced Horticulture.

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