The Institution of Agricultural Engineers (IAgrE) welcomes the government’s proposal to create Centres for Agricultural Innovation that includes the theme of ‘precision agriculture, engineering and sensor technologies’.
Alastair Taylor CEO of IAgrE said, “Last year IAgrE and the Agricultural Engineers Association (AEA) launched a discussion paper for consideration by the Agri-tech leadership council. The paper called for a Centre for Innovation in Engineering for Agriculture to be created to focus on harnessing the work of all relevant innovation and research partners in an inclusive and collaborative partnership.”
The Centres are part of the government’s £160m investment strategy to deliver sustainable and affordable food for future generations. With the demand for food rapidly increasing world-wide, the strategy also aims to make the UK a world leader in tackling global food security issues.
Developed in partnership with industry, the Centres will build on existing UK ability and join up multidisciplinary teams from industry, research, charities, non-government organisations and those not traditionally associated with the agriculture sector. It is envisaged that each Centre will be set up and operated by a single consortium of publicly and privately funded organisations, with small and medium-sized businesses playing an influential role.
“The next stage will be to invite applications from relevant businesses, large or small and academia to form consortia to create outline proposals on establishing and running the centres. The deadline for proposals is 15th October and we anticipate the Centres will be operational during 2015.
As the professional body whose members have long standing expertise in these areas, IAgrE looks forward to contributing to the development of the consortia, supporting their implementation and ultimately delivering outcomes for the benefit of UK PLC," Alastair added.