HSUF Competition Targets Bioproducts, Food, Health
Two $200,000 awards available to U of G researchers
Bioproducts and food and health are new research targets for the Hannam Soybean Utilization Fund.
Started six years ago through a 10-year endowment from OAC graduate Peter Hannam and his family, the fund will support two $200,000 awards in the new targeted areas. Since its inception, the fund has awarded about $100,000 a year, directing support towards more than a dozen projects covering a breadth of soybean-related studies.
Following a review of the program by an expert committee made up of Prof. Rickey Yada, retired professor Gord Surgeoner and consultant Greg Penner, the fund will close out by supporting two larger research projects instead, each with budgets of about $200,000.
“This is a significant opportunity for our research community,” says OAC dean Craig Pearson, who chairs the utilization fund steering committee.
The competition is open only to principal investigators at U of G, although creating teams by linking with other universities is encouraged. The selection committee will be looking particularly for faculty proposals that can lead to new industrial market opportunities in bioproducts or higher value for soybeans in food and health.
“This is a sound strategy for going forward,” says Pearson. “These are important, topical research areas in which Guelph scientists have a great deal of expertise and can make a real difference.”
Projects eligible for funding in the bioproducts area include research for developing biobased chemicals and materials produced from soybeans. Projects that differentiate between industrial soybeans and commodity soybeans will receive higher priority, especially if the differentiation has the clear potential to lead to higher value.
In the food and health area, projects deemed eligible for funding include those dealing with the composition and functional properties of food derived from soybeans leading to new food products, nutraceuticals and other innovative health-related products that have the potential to enhance human health and wellness. Projects aimed at improving the cost-effectiveness of component separation will also be considered.
The expert committee recommended that research include greater interaction between Guelph faculty and the private sector or other research institutes.
To that end, the full research proposal should involve an industry receptor for the technology and evidence of some matching funds from the receptor.
The full proposal will also include a plan for intellectual property.
The call for proposals will be issued shortly. For information, visit the Office of Research website at www.uoguelph.ca/research/funds/contracts_grants/index.shtml.