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Barley scientists of the future get £9m boost

Barley crops in a field (Photo: James Hutton Institute)
“Investing in barley science by bringing new researchers together within the BARIToNE CTP will not only yield a positive impact on the UK barley supply but as barley is also a major global crop and source of translational science to other crop species, the PhD projects are likely to have a far wider impact.”

The next generation of barley researchers have received a multi-million investment through the Barley Industrial Training Network (BARIToNE) programme, a Collaborative Training Partnership (CTP) led by the Scotch Whisky Research Institute, the International Barley Hub at the James Hutton Institute and the University of Dundee, with support from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and industry partners.

The programme will see a cohort of 30 post graduate researchers supported with a total estimated value of £9m. The four-year studentships will be delivered over the period 2022-28 with £3M of funding from BBSRC, £600K in cash from industry and more than £5M in-kind co-investment from academic and commercial partners covering the entire length of the barley value chain.

Professor James Brosnan, BARIToNE leader and chair of the International Barley Hub, said: “The barley supply chain has come together under the umbrella of the International Barley Hub to work in partnership to achieve government and industry targets to reach net-zero carbon emissions and to underpin the future climate resilience of barley as a major global crop. The BARIToNE CTP will create a new generation of scientifically diverse barley experts to become sustainability leaders in industry and academia over the coming decades.

“Under the CTP scheme they will have the opportunity to develop high level technical and translational skills and forge a strong professional network to be the foundation for their future careers. The 18 industry partners in BARIToNE all believe that this CTP will be a major lever to deliver barley sustainability through training talented people.”

Professor Robbie Waugh, Director of the International Barley Hub, added: “A sustainable barley supply supports both UK agriculture and the significant economic benefit that arises when it is processed into whisky, beer and food.

“Investing in barley science by bringing new researchers together within the BARIToNE CTP will not only yield a positive impact on the UK barley supply but as barley is also a major global crop and source of translational science to other crop species, the PhD projects are likely to have a far wider impact.”

Dr Julian South, Executive Director of the Maltsters Association of Great Britain, commented: “The BARIToNE programme will greatly enhance the opportunities for the future generation of scientists and engineers to join the malting industry.  The coordinated programme of research is a real boost for the UK drinks sector and its supply chain.”

The BARIToNE studentships are part of a contingent of 225 studentships, in partnership with academia and industry, spanning 29 businesses and 12 academic research organisations. The CTP scheme run by BBSRC will address skills gaps in UK bioscience industry through doctoral training led by businesses. The collaborative partnerships will work across the council’s strategic priorities areas such as Net Zero+, Tackling Infections, Transformative Technologies and more.

BBSRC executive chair, Professor Melanie Welham said: “With the awards we have announced today BBSRC underlines its commitment to work with industry to support the next generation of bioscience researchers. Projects will span areas vital to our strategic priorities, such as meeting our net-zero goals.”

Notes for editors

Partners of the BARIToNE programme include the James Hutton Institute, SRUC, University of Dundee, Nottingham University, University of the Highlands and Islands, Abertay University, SOAS, MAGB, William Grant, Limagrain, Opportunity NE, KWS, James Hutton Limited, Ackermanns, Bruichladdich, Chivas, Scotch Whisky Research Institute, Glenmorangie, Diageo, Tomatin, Syngenta, Molson Coors, Campden Bri and AB InBev.

Collaborative Training Partnerships co-invest in training the next generation of skilled people for the research base and wider bioeconomy. Its vision is to provide PhD students with a first-rate, challenging research training experience within the context of a mutually beneficial research collaboration, between academic and partner organisations.

The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council invests in world-class bioscience research and training. This research is helping society to meet major challenges, including food security, green energy and healthier, longer lives and underpinning important UK economic sectors, such as farming, food, industrial biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.

Press and media enquiries: 

Bernardo Rodriguez-Salcedo, Media Manager, James Hutton Institute, Tel: +44 (0)1224 395089 (direct line), +44 (0)344 928 5428 (switchboard) or +44 (0)7791 193918 (mobile).


Printed from /news/barley-scientists-future-get-%C2%A39m-boost on 28/10/21 12:45:43 AM

The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.