Farm491 is the innovative agritech business incubator offered by the University.
It’s called Farm491 because, as well as providing high-spec facilities created to foster entrepreneurship, ideas generation, and collaboration - it includes 491 hectares of Cotswold farmland for research and testing.
Through its state-of-the-art facilities, dedicated team and access to expert advisers, Farm491 supports agritech businesses and promotes technology and innovation within the sector.
The Farm491 project was allocated £2.9m of funding from the Gloucestershire Growth Deal.
To support this, Farm491 has launched a new three year long European regional development funded programme called Inspiring Agritech Innovation (IAI) The programme provides a comprehensive range of business support activities to aspiring agritech entrepreneurs to develop, launch and grow their ventures into sustainable businesses.
The Farm491 project gives you access to 491 hectares of nearby farmland across five farms:
- Harnhill Manor Farm, an integrated livestock and cropping system associated with an organic outdoor pig herd
- Coates Manor Farm, arable cropped
- Fossehill Farm, an equestrian centre with stabling and livery facilities
- Kemble Farms Ltd, a 900-cow all-year-round large dairy complex
- Leaze Farm, a 300-cow autumn block calving herd
Farm491 membership is free to any full fee-paying RAU student wishing to start an agritech business.
Farm491 members will have access to the RAU’s enviable support and knowledge network that includes farmers, entrepreneurs, investors and academics, as well as open access to farming data, research, equipment and resources so they can test, refine and grow their propositions.