The aim of the project, collaborating with Durham University Biosciences, is to develop an artificial substrate (a peat free substitute) for the mass propagation of plantlets, primarily for use in the horticultural industry.
There is a desire, given the strong drive from industry and environmental agencies to eliminate the use of peat. This is response to pressure around biodiversity and carbon capture in peat bogs - their exploitation is not sustainable.
The importance of this is reflected in the UK Government's 2021 'Net Zero Strategy: Build Back Greener', which is committed to increasing investment in industry-led research and development in solutions to help deliver a net zero agriculture and horticulture.
This long term project is part of our commitment to new biological applications using sustainable gels.