Food Systems Strategic Priority Fund (SPF)

The Food Systems Strategic Priority Fund (SPF) programme is a £47.5m interdisciplinary programme of research that will help to transform the UK food system by placing healthy people and a healthy natural environment at its centre.

In this context it will address questions around what we should eat, produce and manufacture in the UK and what we should import. In doing so it will consider the complex interactions between health, environment and behavioural factors, while taking into account wider needs for different groups in society. This will enable a joined-up approach across healthy and accessible diets and sustainable food production and supply, delivering coherent evidence to enable concerted action from government, business and civil society.

The programme is supported by UKRI’s Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF) and led by the Global Food Security Programme in partnership with UKRI and govt depts. Find out more about the people behind the programme.

Aims:

The programme aims to:

  • Transform the UK food system by placing healthy people and a healthy natural environment at its centre
  • Determine what we should eat, produce and manufacture in the UK and import, for health and sustainability
  • Bring together researchers, government, business, and civil society
  • Co-produce research across disciplines and stakeholders to provide evidence for coherent policymaking
  • Train the next generation of food system thinkers

The programme is delivered in several stages

Call 1 (£25M) will support 5-year research grants of up to £6M. These will be multi-centre, interdisciplinary and bring together the different parts of the food system. They will build a critical mass of researchers and stakeholders and will enable an integrated approach to addressing the objectives of this programme. These grants must include collaboration with a cross-section of stakeholders (government, business and civil society) to shape the research and help drive impact.

A Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) (£5M) will support one CDT to ensure a pipeline of skilled people who are able to apply critical interdisciplinary systems thinking to health and sustainability challenges, across academia, industry and government. The CDT will deliver three cohorts of students and will bring together research organisations to ensure coverage of different parts of the food system and different disciplines.

Call 2: More information to follow.