ARWAIN SIR BENFRO – the Local Action Group (LAG) for Pembrokeshire, administered by PLANED – have recently provided funding to Mikota, through the LEADER programme.
This is funded through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014 – 2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government.
This project is for a research study into the extraction of hemocyanin from the Slipper Limpet and comparing it against existing hemocyanins used in pharma products. Hemocyanin is a known and crucial protein adjuvant for vaccines and cancer therapies. There is also the development of a plan for Slipper Limpet extraction and handling for fishermen who catch the limpet as a by-catch.
Use of an invasive species for commercial product development will benefit the local coastal region. The medium to long term aim is to clear Slipper Limpet infested sea-beds and native oyster/scallop beds for reseeding by commercial companies, bringing inward investment in aquaculture for Oysters and Scallops into the local community.
This will be a world first use of the Slipper Limpet for not just hemocyanin investigation but for commercial biotech product investigations.
This is just one example of the great projects being delivered in the county. PLANED, now celebrating its 30th year, has helped communities in Pembrokeshire to access over £25m worth of funding during that time.
Arwain Sir Benfro is currently inviting submissions of project ideas from local community groups, organisations or businesses. If you have an innovative idea that could benefit your community, you may be able to get funding from the LEADER programme.
LEADER can support all kinds of activity: mentoring, training, feasibility studies or pilot projects that test an innovative new idea. It could also be used for projects that improve local skills, make better use of a local resource or realise the economic potential of part of the locality leading to a ‘new’ outcome or product.
Further information about LEADER, or Arwain Sir Benfro can be found at www.arwainsirbenfro.cymru.