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£2m for dairy focused projects

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By Fiona Reid
Farming
£2m for dairy focused projects

AWARDS totalling £2m have been awarded to seven innovative projects focused on improving dairy production and the supply chain

The Digital Dairy Chain has announced the successful winners of the 2023 Collaborative Research & Development Grant Competition, run by the UK’s national innovation agency, Innovate UK.

They will each receive a grant of between £200-350K. to be invested in work taking place predominantly across Cumbria and South and West Scotland, the Digital Dairy Chain’s geographical reach.

Digital Dairy Chain programme director Stuart Martin said: “The winning projects’ applications faced stiff competition and are all very deserving of the funding. These are groundbreaking ideas across a number of innovative subject matters, which will have significant implications for dairy productivity and sustainable production on a national level.”

Galebreaker Ltd is leading one such project which has been awarded £270k to create a cost-effective ventilated environment for calves. The Galebreaker team will be working in collaboration with Ross Vance from High Skeog Farm in Whithorn and researchers from Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC).

Andrew Gardner from Galebreaker Ltd, said: “The Digital Dairy Chain funding will allow Galebreaker to design, build and test an innovative and cost-effective calf housing solution. Galebreaker Ltd and High Skeog Farm are aligned in thinking that a key strategy to transforming a dairy farm is by improving the health and welfare of the youngstock, bringing productivity and sustainability to the milking herd.”

Other innovative projects set to receive a share of the £2 million pot of funding range from developing the world’s first ready-to-feed baby milk free from tropical oil emulsifiers, to establishing a new model using genomics and IVF to rapidly breed more methane-efficient, sustainable cattle.

Another round of funding will take place next year.

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