How the Innovate UK KTN AgriFood team gets insight into the sector to shape its work

Posted on: 13/07/2021

The AgriFood team helps organisations interested in AgriFood innovation access the expert information, funding and connections to drive change.

Our team of AgriFood experts has worked in both research and industry before joining Innovate UK KTN but it’s essential they keep in touch with the sector regularly. That’s why we formed three groups for key areas in the sector: plant, food and animal. By hearing directly from people working in the sector, it helps us understand current opportunities, challenges and priorities so that we can adapt our work.

Each group is made up of between 30 to 60 invited members, from research, industry, government and start-ups, across the UK. The groups meet three times a year to discuss themes around innovation. The meetings help us shape the events we organise and reports we write for the sector. They also help inform the UK Government on current sector challenges and opportunities, and how the Government can support the sector accordingly.

We focus on how we can best work together within a pre-competitive framework, enabling stakeholders to cooperate on defining priorities and scoping future opportunities for the benefit of the sector and the UK. The groups also encourage collaboration between members. Meetings include deep dives on a chosen topic, as well as updates from funders and trade bodies.

We also hold joint meetings to bring our advisory boards together to support cross-sector working. For example, our Animal and Plant Sector Advisory Boards met in October 2022, to share their views on barriers to adoption of AgriTech and how they might be addressed.


The Innovate UK KTN Plant Sector Advisory Board

Chaired by Martin Clough, Syngenta
Run by Kaeli Johnson and Pedro Carvalho

Deep dive topics in 2021:


The Innovate UK KTN Animal Sector Advisory Board

Chaired by Allan Milehan, Genetics Vision Inc
Run by Lucy Mather and Caroline Griffin

Deep dive topics in 2021

  • Microbiome


The Innovate UK KTN Food Sector Group

Chaired by Ian Noble, Mondelez International
Run by Simon Baty and Debbie Tully

Deep dive topics in 2021

  • Plant based diet
  • Technical skills needed in the food and drink sector


The Innovate UK KTN AgriFood team is here to help innovators and spark collaborations to drive change. If you’re working on an AgriFood innovation project and would like help to access expert information, funding and connections, get in touch with us.

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