The Government has announced that a new agri-tech strategy is to be developed with the aim of helping UK businesses make best use of new technologies and techniques to meet the needs of consumers and food producers worldwide.

The idea is that it will form part of the Industrial Strategy set out by the Business Secretary last month and it has been suggested that it will focus on improving agricultural efficiency whilst avoiding harm to the environment.

David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science, commented:

“The UK is home to a world-leading plant, animal and environmental research base, underpinned by excellent universities and institutes. This makes it incredibly well placed to be at the forefront of finding innovative solutions to food security, in the face of a rapidly growing global population.

“This strategy will look at how we can improve the commercialisation of basic science into new technology and techniques. This would not only enable countries worldwide to tackle the challenges ahead, but would also contribute significantly to economic growth.”

The Government has also revealed that the agri-tech strategy hopes to deliver:

  • Increased UK exports of products, services and technology
  • Increased engagement with the business sector including through inward investment, such as to accelerate the translation of research
  • A well networked, highly skilled and technology aware agricultural sector with improved access to advice to the farming community on best practice and new technologies

* Sustainable international development.