Financing innovation in food and drink

In the fast-paced food and beverage industry businesses cannot afford to rest on their laurels. While the industry was among the first to emerge in post-hunter-gatherer societies, that doesn’t mean the industry isn’t breaking new ground in the present day. In fact, in addition to being among the largest sectors of the UK economy it is also among the most innovative.

In every corner of the sector, from plant-based alternatives to artisan butchery, firms are constantly striving to improve their products, cut costs and reduce their environmental impact. But many companies are unaware that their efforts to differentiate their products and remove waste from their production processes likely qualify for R&D tax credits.

Our R&D tax credit claims process delves into every aspect of your business, from product and packaging development to manufacturing and retail processes to uncover every penny of eligible expenditure. Boosting after-tax profits and injecting additional working capital into your business.

What are R&D tax credits

What are R&D tax credits?

Introduced by the UK Government in 2000, R&D Tax Credits are designed to encourage innovation by allowing businesses to reclaim some of the money they have spent on developing new – or improving existing – products, services and process.

The opportunity for food and beverage brands

Loss-making SMEs can claim R&D Tax Credit repayment up to £33.35 for every £100 spent on qualifying R&D expenditure and profit-making SMEs can claim R&D Tax Relief which reduces their corporation tax bill by up to £24.7 for every £100. Large companies can claim tax repayment of 13% of qualifying cost

But what constitutes R&D?

Any project that seeks to; Extend overall knowledge or capability; create a process or service that extends knowledge or capability; make an appreciable improvement to an existing process, material or device; or use science or technology to duplicate the effect of an existing process, material or device in a new or improved way is classed as R&D.

What qualifies?

If you solve technical challenges (or pay your staff to solve technical challenges), you probably qualify for R&D tax credits. The examples of qualifying expenditure are virtually limitless.

Here is just a small selection:

  • Food preservation methods

    Testing preservation and packaging methods to maintain freshness and food safety.

  • Removal of unhealthy ingredients

    Experimentation to reduce the content of salt, fat, sugar, additives, or common allergens.

  • Production experimentation to scale recipes

    Testing to refine prototype and small-batch recipes for production at scale.

  • Plant-based and gluten free research

    Research to replicate the sensory experience of foods with plant-based or gluten free alternatives.

  • Process improvements

    Improving cost efficiency and quality of products with new manufacturing processes.

  • Testing alternative cooking methods

    Testing ready-meals and convenience food packaging and recipes using different preparation methods

Next steps

Download the brochure or contact us to book an exploratory discussion to evaluate your claim.