Already responsible for producing one-eighth of England’s food, Greater Lincolnshire is developing the UK Food Valley Programme to position its UK leading food sector as a Top 10 Global Food Cluster.
The UK Food Valley will support growth and encourage inward investment through promoting the scale, diversity and importance of the food sector to the area, and by ensuring that existing food sector companies and new investors are supported.
The UK Food Valley currently supports around 75,000 food sector jobs, 18% of jobs in the area compared to 4% of the UK workforce. At the heart of our food clusters, this concentration is much higher, for example in the South Holland District which focuses on fresh produce and logistics, it is 42% of the local workforce.
Key priorities for the UK Food Valley are:
- Accelerating food chain automation and digital technology adoption to deliver productivity growth and high value jobs;
- Delivering low carbon food chains from farm to fork by focusing on low carbon technologies for production, processing and distribution;
- Developing the market potential of naturally good for you foods and new sources of protein, such as fish, vegetables, salads, fruit, pulses and lean meat, in which Greater Lincolnshire specialises.
The UK Food Valley supports Europe’s largest Agri-food Tech automation and robotics cluster and businesses investing in automation, a test-bed for investors endorsed by the DIT through a High Potential Opportunity (HPO) for Automation in Food Processing. Automation will create more highly skilled jobs, benefitting industry and making the food chain a career of choice for aspirational young people.
The UK Food Valley is leading efforts to reduce carbon emissions from food production by using new technology and skills, new energy sources and production processes, to reduce carbon emissions from food production, processing, transport and storage.
The UK Food Valley was initiated by Greater Lincolnshire LEP supported by industry partners. By maximising collaboration across industry, universities, colleges and local business groups, we support our food companies by ensuring the conditions for growth are provided.