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Ireland to fund new food innovation hub

FBR Staff Writer Published 16 October 2017

The Ireland Government said it will spend €8.8m to establish a new food innovation hub, aimed to help the country’s food industry deal as it prepares for Brexit.

Ireland’s Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine will fund the development of National Food Innovation Hub which has been planned to come up at the Teagasc Moorepark Campus in Fermoy.

According to the Irish government, the food innovation hub will mainly strive to create a business innovation network. This would involve dairy producers, Moorepark Technology (MTL), incubator firms and public-private partnership based research and development programmes.

The research at the National Food Innovation Hub would focus on food processing, nutrition and quality.

Ireland Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said: “Small and medium sized agri-food businesses are already preparing for Brexit by taking an innovative approach and opening up new European and international markets outside of the UK.

“This new National Food Innovation Hub will help Irish businesses to innovate and expand, keeping our agri-food sector competitive and attracting investment in a post-Brexit world.”

As part of the project, up to 12 customer application suites equipped with office and laboratory spaces will be constructed. The suites will enable companies to have a presence on the campus to carry out new-product development among other innovations.

The new food innovation hub is being planned to be linked directly to the Teagasc Food Research Centre and MTL. Through this, the government expects a closer collaboration between the research centres and the food firms based on the Moorepark campus.

The food cluster is expected to promote intensive collaboration between firms and Teagasc researchers to develop a platform for innovation, economic growth and job creation.

Ireland Agriculture, Food and the Marine Minister Michael Creed said: “Food Wise 2025 identified Research, Development and Innovation as key drivers of competiveness in the agri-food sector.

“In this context, it recommended collaboration between industry and the research community to advance research and new product innovation. The National Food Innovation Hub is key to implementing this strategic recommendation.”


Image: Ireland Taoiseach Leo Varadkar (center) along with Minister Michael Creed (right) and Teagasc research director Dr. Frank O'Mara (left). Photo: courtesy of Ireland Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. Photo: courtesy of Ireland Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.