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UK: New research facility planned for Riseholme Campus

The Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership is providing a grant of £1,333,000 for the project, and the University of Lincoln is providing a further £888,666, bringing the total project cost to just over £2 million.

This new purpose-built glasshouse will offer access to specialist research infrastructure and innovation support services. This will allow SMEs and other businesses in the agricultural sector to adapt or improve their products or services.

The glasshouse will be subdivided into independently controlled compartments, facilitating the delivery of multiple projects at the same time throughout the year.

The Greater Lincolnshire LEP's proposed Agricultural Growth Zone (Ag Zone), designed to support Greater Lincolnshire agriculture and the delivery of the UK Food Valley, will benefit from the addition of the glasshouse facility as it will provide a space for collaborative research and innovation.

The research and development infrastructure will also be used for the new AgriTech Incubator established by the University in partnership with Barclays Eagle Labs.

Eligible businesses will have access to research and knowledge transfer opportunities from experts at the University of Lincoln who will support businesses within the industry to adopt new technology, implement new processes, and develop new products to transition into modern, technology-enabled businesses.

Professor Simon Pearson, Director of Lincoln Institute for Agri-Food Technology (LIAT), said: "This is a critical new facility that complements the world-class research and innovation facilities already in place at the University of Lincoln's Riseholme Campus."

"It will support research, innovation, and skills development for the Local Enterprise Partnership and the national horticulture sector, and the investment will focus on the development of novel renewable sources for glasshouse production."

"These will, in turn, reduce emissions and mitigate the sector's dependency on fossil fuels."

Sarah Louise Fairburn, Chair of the Greater Lincolnshire LEP Food Board, said: "This project will support those innovative businesses in Greater Lincolnshire that are working on agricultural and horticultural technology."

"The University's Agri-Tech Incubator will establish a pipeline of businesses who require access to R&D facilities within a professional glasshouse environment, supporting the future growth of the agri-tech cluster and ambitions of our UK Food Valley."

Professor Andrew Hunter, Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation at the University of Lincoln, said: "This investment demonstrates the University's long-term commitment to world-leading research in a critically important sector for Greater Lincolnshire."

"LIAT goes from strength to strength, and the new glasshouse adds hugely important capabilities. We are very grateful to the Greater Lincolnshire LEP for their support."


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