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Protein Industries Canada and Innovate UK announce joint call for plant-based food and ingredient R&D projects

September 25, 2023

A bilateral partnership between Protein Industries Canada, one of Canada’s five Global Innovation Clusters, and Innovate UK, the UK’s national innovation agency, is taking another step forward with a CA$20 million joint call for collaborative R&D projects. The joint call will support the advancement of plant-based foods and ingredients, helping meet the growing global demand for diverse protein options.

The call builds on previous cooperation between the countries, including a June 2023 meeting between Canadian Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry François-Philippe Champagne, and UK Science Minister George Freeman. During that meeting the countries agreed to deeper collaboration in the areas of science and innovation, with a focus on plant-based food and ingredients.

“Our government is proud to see that Protein Industries Canada and Innovate UK are strengthening their strategic partnership and further advancing innovation in the plant-based food and ingredients sector,” said the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry. “By diversifying protein options, this collaboration will help build a more sustainable future and more resilient and prosperous economies, and it will help meet an ever-growing global demand."

Through the new joint call for projects, consortiums of three organizations, including at least one company from each country, can submit EOIs that support innovation in the development of new plant-based ingredients, foods and feed, as well as projects that enhance taste, texture or nutritional quality of plant-based food and ingredients. With up to CA$20 million being invested between Protein Industries Canada and Innovate UK, the call will help further ecosystems on both sides of the Atlantic.

“The demand for plant-based food is growing around the world,” said Bill Greuel, CEO of Protein Industries Canada. “Canada has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to be a global leader in the supply of high-quality, healthy and sustainable plant-based ingredients. Partnerships such as these provide an opportunity for Canadian companies to work with some of the world’s most innovative companies while developing partnerships that will lead to new markets and new opportunities.”

The call is part of an ongoing collaboration between the two organizations. Innovate UK will bring a delegation of companies to Canada the week of 11 September 2023, while Protein Industries Canada in partnership with NRC-IRAP is hosting a mission back to the UK this week (25 September).

"We are delighted to see our partnership with PIC continue with the joint funding call and anticipating the transformative outcomes of this partnership for both Canada and the UK,” Innovate UK Executive Director of Healthy Living and Agriculture Domain Dr Katrina Hayter said. “Through our collaboration, we can harness our distinct expertise and create opportunities for business from both countries to accelerate their growth and drive innovation to tackle the most pressing societal challenges."

EOIs are being accepted from 18 September to 1 November 2023. All projects must be complete by 31 March 2026.

If you have any questions or would like to get in touch with us, please email info@futureofproteinproduction.com

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