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Tay Cities Deal success celebrated at Royal Highland Show 2019

David Mundell MP speaks at James Hutton Institute marquee
"The Cities Deal is a huge vote of confidence in Tayside. Both projects we are involved in represent significant investment in the future of this region, in key sectors for the regional and national economy and have the potential to unlock substantial economic benefits"

The James Hutton Institute celebrated its Tay Cities Deal success at this year's Royal Highland Show alongside industry guests and stakeholders, with the support of the Rt Hon David Mundell, Secretary of State for Scotland.

The International Barley Hub (IBH) and the Advanced Plant Growth Centre (APGC) are innovative and globally significant research and development centres which are set to receive a total of £62m under the Tay Cities Deal, making projects under the ‘Securing our Food Production Capability’ strand the highest-funded part of the Deal.

These two initiatives will create industry-focused and commercially viable innovation centres in Tayside and will further strengthen the Institute’s world-leading research in plant science.

The IBH is set to be a centre of excellence linking industry-focussed research with innovation, to deliver immediate impact and ensure the long-term sustainability of the UK and international agriculture, brewing and distilling, food and non-food sectors. It is backed by a £35m TCD investment.

Similarly, the APGC has been supported with a £27m TCD investment and it seeks to generate state-of-the-art research and innovation infrastructure associated with totally-controlled-environment agriculture. It will mean the UK can play its part in leading the science agenda around this rapidly expanding global market which is expected to be worth $10 billion by 2025

Professor Colin Campbell, Chief Executive of the James Hutton Institute, said: “The Cities Deal is a huge vote of confidence in Tayside. Both projects we are involved in represent significant investment in the future of this region, in key sectors for the regional and national economy and have the potential to unlock substantial economic benefits. Our governments, industry partners and colleagues across academia were instrumental in achieving this outcome and we owe them and the City Deal teams many thanks.”

Scottish Secretary David Mundell said: “The UK Government’s Tay Cities Deal investment will deliver a transformational boost to the region’s economy. Our funding for the James Hutton Institute is great news for Scottish science and the research and development generated by the International Barley Hub and Advanced Plant Growth Centre will create economic, social and environmental benefits over many years.

“To date the UK Government has committed more than £1.35 billion of Growth Deal investment to support sustainable growth in Scotland and create jobs and opportunities for the future.”

The APGC is a new research facility at the very forefront of emerging technology and is designed to deliver increased commercial, economic and environmental benefits to the global food and drink sector.

Investment in APGC will see Scotland lead the way and become a hub for the global development of indoor and vertical farming. It is envisaged that the Tayside region could become central to an industry that will produce consistent, high-quality produce all year-round across the globe.

Professor Campbell added: “The APGC will also see the development of new crop varieties and improve the quality and taste of existing crop species.  In doing this, we have the potential to better secure our food supply chains against climate change and mitigate the impact on the environment.”

Describing the potential impact of the APGC initiative, Technical Manager Allan Wilson from Waitrose said: “The James Hutton Institute has an outstanding track record in plant breeding which puts them ahead of other UK players.

“This, for me, makes the Advanced Plant Growth Centre an exciting opportunity which will put Scotland in a dominant position within this emerging market, that others will struggle to match. This innovation will provide faster, more dedicated, vertical growing/breeding and commercialisation benefits to many sectors such as vegetables and soft fruits.”

It is hoped that both projects will be fully established with infrastructure within three years. Both centres have already embarked on ambitious ‘soft starts’ to allow early delivery of collaboration, information-sharing and cross-fertilisation of ideas between project partners and the sectors involved.

More information from: 

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


Printed from /news/tay-cities-deal-success-celebrated-royal-highland-show-2019 on 19/09/19 07:53:54 PM

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.