Coop Innovation Fund …. Technology in Horticulture

Coop Innovation Fund …. Technology in Horticulture


At the end of 2022 Grown That Way part of our sister organisation Battling On, was awarded a grant from the Coop Innovation Fund.

Part of a £1.4m of grants delivered in June 2022 to help partners tackle carbon emissions in food and farming.

Experimenting with both old and new types of horticulture at Battling On’s Grown That Way experimental garden, in partnership with the University of Plymouth. The experimental garden will become a learning centre for local growers, communities and interested parties who are interested in trialling and understanding more about alternative growing methods. 

CIF id funded through donations of the Co-op compostable carrier bags in the UK as well as additional funds from CIF.

CIF has projects spread across the globe and, from Santa Cruz Island to Cornwall, they’ll change the world for the better. Here at Grown That Way we are really proud to be one of them 14 projects helping to change the world for the better and opening up new ideas and opportunities to the communities we are part of.

The work is exciting and innovative; going against the status quo by working with new technology and old forgotten ways, we firmly believe are best way to success if through the mix of traditional practices and embracing technology to completement what nature does.

Are experimental garden looks at different growing practises with a big focus on the use of technology, not because we are focused more way that the other but because for the purpose of this project, we look at how tech can be used.

Our garden plays host to a beautiful market garden bnuilt on reclaimed brownfield land and at its hart is our protected growing environment. Or as we like to call it “PLOT IN A BOX’ a self-contained hydroponic growing environment that looks at how plant health, production and stability can be achieved alongside a carbon reduced space.

As part of this the University of Plymouth have been a shining star is offering us all the academic access and research we could require to help spread the use and information and advantages of protected growing. This element may not be so new but to small businesses and communities it is and together we want to be able to share that access.

Working with the ground-breaking team from Plymouth University we have been able to develop a system that is future proofed to show how tech can reduce carbon emissions in production but also play part of a more holistic space as a bolt on.

One completed the garden and growing spaces will be open to business and public on growing days to share inspire and challenge. We will also host robotic developments in growing and recording alongside our protected growing spaces as way to improve that relationship between holistic and tech.

All developments will be shared via our media platforms and published in partnership with our partners as way to share the knowledge, our end of year report due in 2024 for this first stage will offer answer to questions such as ‘why I need this’, can we engage in this and how do we do this. All published with how to guides and extended support from our selves.

For more information, please contact Kenny@grownthatwway

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