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Country News - 2003

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Yorkshire boost for non-food farm crops

Thursday 15 May 2003

YORKSHIRE is to play an important role in one of the most exciting areas of research to help embattled farmers - the race to produce crops not for food but for use in industrial processes.

The regional development agency, Yorkshire Forward, is providing £100,000 for the building of prototype production lines to demonstrate the processing of hemp, a natural fibre which can be used in a vast range of products, and crambe, a mustard-like plant which produces an oil valued by the beauty products industry.

Springdale Crop Synergies Ltd have been working with DEFRA to recruit farmers and growers for these two environmentally friendly crops, and buildings at Springdale Farm near Driffield in East Yorkshire are being converted to house a DEFRA funded conference and information centre.

When the centre is open, farmers interested in growing non-food crops will be invited to watch its operation which, experts hope, will allow them in the near future to set up their own processing lines in derelict farm buildings.


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