Friday, January 21, 2022

Senior plant scientist joins growing AgTech firm

AgTech firm Light Science Technologies (LST) has made a new addition to its rapidly expanding team of scientists, as the business experiences an accelerated period of growth and the sector sees increasing global interest in indoor farming.

Chuan Ching Foo, known as CC, joins the team as senior plant scientist, where she will take on full responsibility for the running and management of LST’s onsite lab facilities where new crop testing is carried out, while also supporting the company’s ongoing efforts to improve the quality, flavour, and freshness of produce for indoor growers and farmers in polytunnel, glasshouse and vertical farming.

With a background in Bioscience, CC studied in her native country of Brunei where she has a BSc in Biotechnology from Monash University, Malaysia. In 2013, she came to the UK to study for her MSc in Crop Improvement, before completing her PhD in Photosynthesis and Photoprotection in Crops at the University of Nottingham, where she also served as a lab technician overseeing lab and growth room facilities.

She has previously taught in student workshops and also worked as a research technician with Verdesian Life Sciences and Azotic Technologies, as well as working on numerous collaborative projects with global institutes including CIMMYT in Mexico; Lancaster University, CSIRO based in Australia and NIAB in the UK.

LST, located on Derby’s Hilton Business Park, creates lighting and sensor technology for commercial indoor farming such as vertical farming, polytunnels and greenhouses.

Currently employing 17 staff, it has its eyes on global expansion as part of the company’s longer-term growth plans. In October, the firm announced its flotation on the stock exchange after raising over £5 million in funds.

Commenting on the new appointment, Simon Deacon, CEO of LST, says: “I am delighted to welcome CC who has the talent, experience and drive we need to take us to the next stage of LST’s strategic objectives in indoor farming and help build on the ongoing momentum we are currently experiencing. We’re excited to utilise her expertise alongside further developing our award-winning technology to revolutionise agriculture and indoor growing.”

“I am thrilled to join LST at a time of such ambitious growth,” says CC. “COP26 has highlighted the urgent need for us all to switch to a way of sourcing food that is sustainable and reliable, and through the use of AgriTech, has reinforced the benefits and potential it will bring over the next few years. To be able to harness my knowledge in crop science to create a more sustainable world is incredibly motivating and LST sets up the perfect opportunity.”

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