Featured Article 02 Nov 2021
Image credit: © Khvost/Stock.adobe.com
Image credit: © Khvost/Stock.adobe.com

The Government has pledged to invest €14m in research at the University of Limerick (UL) to make the Irish dairy industry more sustainable and competitive.

The €14m funding boost marks the second part of a fund allocated to the Dairy Processing Technology Centre (DPTC) based at UL. It was founded in 2014 as a collaborative centre between industry and academia, focused on dairy processing research and innovation.

The €25m centre was funded by the Government through Enterprise Ireland, along with industry partners. It was established as part of plans to position Ireland as a world leader in dairy innovation and double the country’s milk production capacity by 2020.

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, TD, said that Ireland is one of “the most ambitious countries in the world on climate” with the Climate Act being signed into law earlier this year. He added that agriculture and farming, as one of the country’s “largest and most important indigenous industries”, should continue to be prioritised.

“We make enough food to feed our population nine times over. That’s something we should be proud of and we want it to continue,” Varakdar said.

“This research is crucial as we move to a low-carbon society, to ensure our food industry can thrive, modernise and continue to compete globally.”

The Government’s investment is being delivered through Enterprise Ireland. The agency’s CEO, Leo Clancy, said that the DPTC has “proved how effective collaboration between industry leaders and our research community can be”.

The DPTC is one of eight technology centres operating across Ireland, focused on critical areas such as advanced manufacturing, AI, microelectronics, pharmaceuticals and food.

DPTC director Dr Anne Marie Henihan said the centre is looking forward to “delivering on the full potential of this investment and building on the successes and achievements of phase one” of the funding.

“We will be relentless in our drive to provide world-class innovative research that provides game-changing advances for the future of Irish dairy processing,” she added.

Henihan attributed the centre’s success so far to the “great level of cooperation and collaboration” between its industry and academic partners.

Blathnaid O’Dea

This article originally appeared on www.siliconrepublic.com and can be found at: https://www.siliconrepublic.com/innovation/limerick-dairy-research-e14m-funding-sustainability

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