Fera Science Ltd. is proud to be shortlisted in the 2022 York Press Business Awards, in the Category of Business Innovation of the Year


Fera Science Ltd. is proud to be shortlisted in the 2022 York Press Business Awards, in the Category of Business Innovation of the Year

Fera Science Ltd., (Fera) is proud to be shortlisted in the 31st York Press Business Awards under ‘Business Innovation of the Year’. With this inaugural entry, Fera will be attending the awards ceremony on Thursday 24th November at York Racecourse where the winners of each category will be announced.

Fera’s entry spotlights the internationally pioneering contribution it has made over the last decade to prove and develop the potential of insect bioconversion to upcycle organic waste from environmental hazard to valorised products under a near perfect circular economy and which has culminated in it investing £1m this year to build and commission its ‘first of its kind’, insect research laboratory at its base at the York Biotech Campus (YBC). Fera’s new laboratory will upscale its current insect services and help meet the needs of clients from across the food industry by demonstrating insect bioconversion at pilot scale and twinning insect farming at factory scale to de-risk new entrants, helping to accelerate adoption of this new technology by a much wider industrial user base – thereby delivering a ‘multiplier’ environmental and economic benefit.

Insect bioconversion can consume traceable biomass waste to provide alternative livestock feed, fishing, and pet foods and even as ingredients for consumer foods.  

Under an alternative application it can also be applied to abstract environmentally hazardous waste streams from farm manures and slurries to sewerage and to upcycle them for non-food and feed products such as biofuels and soil nutrients.

It is a circular economic practice that reduces waste, provides alternative sustainably sourced proteins for the food chain to help overcome the rising pressure to meet consumption for the growing population globally and estimated 250 million metric tonnes of additional protein that will be needed per year in the decades ahead to feed the world. The launch of the new insect research laboratory has seen Fera’s presence grow by over 2,000 sq. ft on a campus that sits at the heart of an agricultural region driving the circular economy and bio-based industry.


We’re thrilled to have been shortlisted for this year’s Business Awards” explains Dr Andrew Swift, Chief Executive Officer at Fera Science.

At Fera we believe in applying innovation and original thinking to protect you, what you eat and the world in which we live and there are few finer examples of our cross-disciplinary and entrepreneurial approach than in the way we have led the world insect bioconversion from York”.

We’re proud to be driving radical and disruptive innovation to address today’s challenges in food security and food safety, environmental  conservation and nature recovery. Our recognition as part of the York awards is a testament to the efforts, purpose, and dedication of all Fera’s employees.

Based in York, with a scientific heritage spanning over 100 years and employing over 450 scientists in the Yorkshire, Fera is a national and international centre of excellence for interdisciplinary investigation and problem solving, with experience in support of public goods across food-agri environment axis and for translation of innovative science into most impactful services to deliver positive change. Around the globe, organisations in over 120 countries rely on Fera to ensure the quality and safety of their products as we are uniquely positioned to address ‘whole system’ of food production in the modern economy.

As one of the three businesses shortlisted for the innovation category, Fera is proud of its Yorkshire base and work with regional, national, and global partners, continually investing and expanding its product and service offerings to not only respond to industry requirements but to also continue to support the local economy by creating high quality employment. Utilising talent from within the region and a programme of regional community engagement and investment in our staff, apprenticeships, PhD students and recruitment at the bench, Fera provides attractive career progression opportunities.

With over 100 entries, the awards have long been a major fixture in the York business calendar, with this year as no exception. The 2022 Awards celebrate businesses across Yorkshire, in 11 categories, who have thrived in their respective sectors despite current economic troubles, long-standing businesses going from strength to strength, firms who have proved their calibre as good employers, and those who put sustainability at the heart of their work.

Fera applies Original Thinking to support sustainable global food production and has a long history of pioneering innovation. In February 2022, Fera launched Enigma; a strategic R&D model established to support continued research, innovation, and knowledge transfer across the agri-food sector through a joined-up approach between Fera and industry partners. Thought to be one of the first research models of its kind in the agri-food sector, Enigma relies on industry collaboration to address exacting industry challenges.

This year Fera has also launched LAND360; a new service to measure, monitor and assess natural capital. Combining data and science, LAND360 is based on three hierarchical levels of service that accurately measures and maps existing land habitat features and models biodiversity, offerings to help farmers, landowners and managers make informed land use decisions in response to Defra’s environmental land management schemes (ELMs), and the drive to manage land in a way that recognises ‘public money for public good’.

Fera has plans to bring further innovative technology to the region under the BioYorkshire initiative. The ten-year programme will accelerate the translation and application of research discoveries into full scale biotechnology applications. As one for the three founding partners, Fera is committed to transforming the UK’s bioeconomy and creating centre of gravity for the north of England and wider UK for the bioeconomy. The project will help drive a new era of bio-manufacturing and farming, reduce carbon emissions, and actively contribute to the UK’s Net Zero ambitions. We estimate that innovation and skills developed through BioYorkshire will add around £1.4bn in GVA to the UK economy, creating 4,000 jobs across Yorkshire and the UK.

Promoting inclusivity, in attending the awards ceremony, Fera’s CEO Dr Andrew Swift will be joined by a cross-section of Fera staff and a selection of our valued regional customers, partners and key suppliers.




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