Sainsbury‘s has donated £1.2 million for investment in the future of British farming, the grocer announced in front of almost 1,000 farmers and growers today.
14 projects from across the UK will benefit from the money, receiving around £123,000 each.
These 14 projects were chosen from a total of 70 entries which were submitted for consideration, of which 21 were shortlisted.
In order to qualify for funding, the projects had to satisfy several criteria, including offering improvement in animal health and welfare, improvement in efficiencies and cost effectiveness and development of new products or processes which help to improve quality, taste and freshness.
Among the chosen projects was The Aberdeen Cattle Society and Beef Development Group, which focuses on improving the quality of Aberdeen Angus beef while also improving animal welfare and the carbon footprint.
Other initiatives to benefit include a project to extend the British strawberry system and a study on the effects of foot trimming on lame sheep.
The decision to give out £1.2 million in funding comes as part of Sainsbury‘s 20×20 sustainability plan, a series of commitments made by the retailer to protect the environment, source sustainable, British food where possible, encourage customers to eat healthily and invest in local communities.
Commenting on today‘s announcement, Sainsbury‘s Director, Judith Batchelar, said: “The quality of applications comes as a stark contrast to the perception that agricultural innovation has slowed in recent years, all 70 were future thinking and would play a key role in driving the farming industry.
“The 14 successful projects is not only great news for those involved but the whole supply chain, through to our customers who understand the importance of supporting British farming and improving animal health and welfare.
“As we work towards our 20×20 sustainability plan a number of these projects will put us in good stead to achieve our stretching targets including doubling sales of British products and sourcing key raw materials sustainably.”