The UK’s innovation agency has unveiled plans to invest around £10m in projects to increase resource efficiency in manufacturing and in the food supply chain.
The funding is included in the Technology Strategy Board’s £400m delivery programme for 2014-15.
As part of a ‘resource efficiency action plan’, up to £4m will be invested in a research and development competition focused on extracting value from waste, in particular by developing new supply chains that support a more circular economy.
An additional £1m will be spent on feasibility studies to explore new circular business models. Up to £500,000 will go to knowledge-transfer partnerships to promote sharing models among manufacturing companies, using by-products from one as feedstock for another.
The board is also planning a ‘Clean and Cool Mission 2014 to the US’ with investments up to £250m. This will allow small UK companies to find investment and partnerships overseas.
As part of an agriculture and food action plan, up to £5m will be invested in a research and development competition to minimise waste generation in the food production supply chains.
The TSB has also announced it will introduce a UK-wide SME growth programme, which will provide mentoring and coaching services.
To help match innovators with possible investors, there will also be a new online platform developed in partnership with the British Business Bank and the UK Business Angels Association. This will showcase innovative companies to potential investors.