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IDB and Teagasc Team up to Establish New Dairy Innovation Centre

The Irish Dairy Board (IDB) and Teagasc have jointly announced the creation of a new Dairy Innovation Centre based in Moorepark (Cork, Ireland). This initiative will be officially launched on Friday 8 July, 2011.

The objective is to develop market led product concepts which can be manufactured by IDB members and marketed internationally by the IDB. The initiative is a response to the IDB’s medium terms plans to maximise the expansion opportunities which will be created for the Irish dairy sector when the European Union abolishes milk quotas in 2015 and the Government’s Food Harvest 2020 Report. This partnership is a vital part of the IDB’s strategy to increase the added value element of Irish dairy exports, and Teagasc’s strategy to support innovative research by commercial Irish food companies.

Since September 2010, both the IDB and Teagasc have undertaken a market led, collaborative development programme on cheese and this is progressing positively with four new cheese product concepts currently being developed. Following the establishment of a successful working relationship between both parties, this collaboration is now being formalised in the establishment of the IDB Dairy Innovation Centre, at the Teagasc Food Centre, Moorepark.

The collaboration brings together -

  • The intellectual knowledge and technical product development expertise of the Teagasc Food Research Centre
  • The pilot scale, test equipment and production capacity of Moorepark Technology Limited
  • The IDB’s 50 years of international marketing and consumer expertise as well as the IDB's brands and route to market infrastructure.

Product concepts will be scaled up for commercialisation with IDB members and will be marketed internationally by the IDB.

The ambition of the IDB Dairy Innovation Centre is to develop a pipeline of both consumer products and value added dairy ingredients.

The IDB Dairy Innovation Centre is commercially focused on developing new valued added dairy products which will deliver consumer benefits, such as improved taste, flavour, functionality and nutritional content. The initial focus will be on a range of cheeses, and this will extend to other dairy products.

The programme will have a full time staff of 5 people supported by 4 Teagasc scientists and by the IDB’s international marketing and commercial teams.

Initially the Centre will be located at the existing IDB facilities in the Teagasc Food Research Centre, Moorepark. Planning permission is being sought for a new state of the art Innovation Centre in Moorepark to accommodate the second phase of the IDB Dairy Innovation Centre.

IDB CEO Kevin Lane said: “The collaboration is one important pillar of the IDB’s innovation strategy. We are also developing our internal capabilities and working directly with our members in other specific areas. The initiative is in response to developing new products that meet the requirements of consumers and supports our members as we plan together to maximise the expansion opportunities and to add further value, which will be created following the abolition of milk quota’s in 2015.”

Teagasc Director Professor Gerry Boyle said: “This is an important initiative focussed on innovative research to meet the needs of dairy co-ops as they develop market outlets for the anticipated increased volume of milk produced in Ireland post 2015. Teagasc has built up an expertise in food research and this coupled with the pilot plant facilities in Moorepark Technology Ltd is providing a platform for innovation in the dairy sector by commercial dairy companies like IDB.”