• Press Release: Europe risks repeating multi-decade GM crop debate as farm technology advances

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  • Presss Release: EU red tape threatens British farming- 29/10/15

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Pioneering UK research

The UK has traditionally been at the forefront of agricultural technology research, read more about the contribution of the research sector to the UK economy here.

Britain has a strong pedigree in agricultural research, including biotechnology, and research teams across the UK are at the forefront. They are developing agronomic systems and technologies that combat pests and disease, help crops to respond to a changing climate and increase agricultural productivity using fewer resources like water, fertilizer and fuel.

From laboratory discovery through to farm-scale cultivation, crops go through a typical technology development cycle. The UK has a particular strength at the early discovery stage of R&D. This success drives private and public investment in the UK which is relatively high compared to other EU countries. For example, the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) spends around £445 million per year on biotechnology and biological sciences.

Examples of the work being done by UK research institutes and private investors to develop world-leading agricultural innovations can be found on the Knowledge Hub tab.

For more details on the potential for UK agricultural R&D to contribute to economic growth, please see abc's report Going for Growth, below.

The Going for Growth report can also be found online at