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A team from the Czech University of Agriculture is faced with the otherworldly task of growing lettuce, radishes, basil and potatoes under Martian conditions in a bid to solve the problem of food supply for future manned missions to the Red Planet.

Headed by Czech-Croatian scientist Jan Lukacevic, project Marsonaut, which began last year, has been endowed with an initial grant of 40,000 euros ($43, 675) and its findings could also help farmers overcome environmental challenges here on Earth.