Co-op Foundation opens second round of its climate fund

The Co-op Group’s charity wants to support organisations working to reduce reliance of soy and synthetic fertilisers in agriculture

Round two of the Co-op Foundation’s £3.5m Carbon Innovation Fund (CIF) opens for applications today (1 February). 

The Foundation – the charitable arm of the Co-op Group, a partner on the fund – will focus on projects to reduce reliance on soy-based animal feed and synthetic fertilisers in agriculture.

Grants of £75,000 to £200,000 are available to organisations through the fund, which the Foundation says builds on its plan to create more sustainable communities, as part of its new strategy ‘Building communities of the future together’. Between five and 10 grants are expected to be awarded.

Round one of the fund saw the partnership give £1.4m to organisations working to decrease carbon emissions from the food, farming and aquaculture industries. 

CIF is the largest partnership of its kind between the Group and its charity. It is funded by donations from the sale of compostable carrier bags in the Group’s stores, as well as the Foundation’s own funds.    

Nick Crofts, CEO of the Co-op Foundation, said: “The Carbon Innovation Fund is our largest ever partnership with Co-op and it truly embodies our shared commitment of co-operating for a fairer world. This second round of funding will help build more sustainable communities by reducing the environmental impact of the soy industry and synthetic fertilisers. We want to work closely with our partners, listen and learn and I’d encourage all those eligible for this funding to apply today.” 

Adele Balmforth, director of propositions at the Group, said: “Collaboration is key to unlocking the carbon reductions that are needed to protect our planet, which is why the Carbon Innovation Fund is so integral in our ambitious pathway to Net Zero.

“The second round of investment calls for innovations to deliver a sustainable food and farming industry for the future, with areas of focus that directly impact our supply chains – something that will not only support Co-op but the wider food industry.”