Funding Round-Up

Take a look at the latest funding competitions of relevance to organisations and academics working within the field of plastics. 

ISCF: Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging

Part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund Wave 3, this Challenge will develop a new generation of advanced and sustainable plastic packaging to reduce single-use plastics, increase recyclability and the amount of plastic packaging that is recycled and ultimately reduce the amount of plastic waste entering the environment.  Government is prepared to invest up to £60 million in this Challenge from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, with additional funding of up to £149 million from industry. The Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging Challenge aims to establish the UK as a leading innovator in sustainable plastic packaging for consumer products, delivering cleaner growth across the supply chain, with a dramatic reduction in plastic waste entering the environment by 2025.

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Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

Current KTP period: Open date: 03.10.19 – Closing date: 11.12.19 (after this the next round will be available immediately, so don’t rush your application unnecessarily)

A Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP)  links your organisation with one of the UK’s world-class knowledge bases (a university or research organisation) to power strategic innovation projects, embed expertise and drive commercial growth. needed to develop it, a Knowledge Transfer Partnership may be the answer. It creates a dynamic three-way collaboration – between a business or not for profit organisation, a UK university or research organisation, and a suitably qualified graduate – to help realise a strategic innovation project, bring about transformative change and embed new capability.

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Innovate UK Smart Grants

Competition Closes: 08.01.20

Smart is the new name for Innovate UK’s ‘Open grant funding’ programme. Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £25 million in the best game-changing, innovative or disruptive ideas with a view to commercialisation. All proposals must be business focused. Applications can come from any area of technology (including arts, design, media or creative industries), science or engineering and be applied to any part of the economy.

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Waste Prevention Implementation Fund

Investments funded through the grant must be complete by 31.12.19

It is recognised that while organisations understand the benefits of waste prevention, they often do not take action, lacking the finance and support to make the necessary changes.  This fund has therefore been designed to help organisations overcome these barriers to undertake a particular project with a focus on raw materials savings, carbon savings and the movement of waste material up the waste hierarchy.

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UKRI Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Centres & Coordinator

Following on from the UKRI Circular Economy workshops in June 2019, UKRI has now made £22.5m available to support five Circular Economy Centres for up to four years (at 80% FEC).

Closing date: 05.12.19

Applications are also open for the post of Coordinator for the hubs: this can be done by one full-time applicant, but is also open to academics that job share, have a part time contract or those currently committed to other large existing grant.

Closing date: 19.11.19

Read more here


Novo Nordisk Innovation Challenge

Closing date: 13.12.19

The challenge aims to explore, design and co-develop sustainable approaches to our business practices, which could bring life to the key innovations of tomorrow, allowing Novo Nordisk to spearhead the movement towards sustainable healthcare.

Innovators are invited to participate in the 2019-2020 Novo Nordisk Innovation Challenge. Three to five green health tech startups are sought to successfully enter a collaborative effort with Novo Nordisk. There are two tracks we are interested in investigating, 1) Circular Design and 2) Recycle. Benefits include:

  • Opportunity to pilot an initiative with Novo Nordisk
  • Collaboration opportunities with Novo Nordisk
  • Mentoring by subject matter experts from Novo Nordisk, Green Innovation Group, and MATTER
  • €25,000 cash award

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Circular Economy Fund (WRAP Cymru)

This £6.5m fund will offer grants to businesses of any size seeking capital investment funding to increase their use of recycled materials in manufactured products, components or packaging. WRAP Cymru will administer the fund on behalf of the Welsh Government.

Click here to find out more (applications assessed quarterly, running until at least March 2020)



Zero Waste Scotland Circular Economy Investment Fund

The Circular Economy Investment Fund is a funding opportunity for small and medium sized businesses and organisations in Scotland working in all business and social economy sectors.  Zero Waste Scotland are investing up to £18 in grant funding for businesses;

  • Exploring markets for new circular economy products
  • Development and adoption of innovative business models for new circular economy products and services
  • Development and uptake of innovative technologies, products and services to support a circular economy

Read More (applications ongoing, 30 day turnaround, projects can run until June 2023)

You can also read about Zero Waste Scotland’s Action on Plastics initiative here.



UK Seafood Innovation Fund

The 3-year programme focuses on:

  • delivering longer term, cutting-edge innovation across the seafood sector
  • helping to take innovative ideas from early stage research to commercial viability

The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) is administering the SIF programme on behalf of the UK government. This is an open competition. Cefas welcomes applications from all sectors. Your products must benefit the sustainability and productivity of the seafood industry. The first call for applications for feasibility studies and larger R&D projects opened in July 2019 and will close in early September 2019. The second call will open in early 2020.

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Future Fashion Factory Innovation Funding, Call 2

Future Fashion Factory has grant funding available to award to eligible businesses / collaborations of businesses for projects ranging from <£10,000 up to £100,000.

This call for proposals aims to support innovative, industry-focused projects in the high value fashion and textile industries that fit with any of our five key themes:

  • Last-stage customisation
  • Circular economy (sustainability / waste)
  • Aesthetic communication
  • Data-driven design (AI / deep learning)
  • Skills and education for STEAM-based designers

Please submit your expression of interest by email at by 25 October 2019. Final applications should be submitted by 15 November and all applicants will receive feedback on their submission by 29 November.

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Sustainable Advanced Manufacturing

The Circular Economy Investment Fund is a funding opportunity for small and medium sized businesses and organisations in Scotland working in all business and social economy sectors. Zero Waste Scotland are investing up to £18 in grant funding for businesses.

Read more


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