Governmentfunded Research Programs

MAFF funds food research to support its mission that is largely concerned with protecting the public and stimulating improved economic performance. The 1997/1998 budget was ~£130 million. Collaborative research is encouraged. The LINK program is a collaborative research program, encouraging applied research initiatives in a variety of areas in which 50% of the funding is provided by government and 50% by industry. The MAFF-led programs in the LINK scheme are concerned with food processing sciences, agrofood quality, and advanced and hygienic food manufacturing. As mentioned, the UK research councils (in particular the BBSRC) are major sources of funding for food research in the UK, through a variety of schemes.

The Foresight Programme was launched in 1994 by the Office of Science and Technology of the Department of Trade and Industry. The activities of the Programme are broad and are concerned with the identification of future challenges and opportunities for UK companies. For example, thematic panels address, inter alia, food chain and crops for industry; health care; education, and energy. Panels draw together relevant contributions to the knowledge pool from industry, government, academe, and professional societies. The output of the Foresight Programme influences government policy, spending decisions, and research programs and initiatives.

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