Meat Technology Ireland Launched
Meat Technology Ireland, a strategic research and innovation base in beef and sheep meat processing in Ireland, was launched today by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O Connor TD and Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed TD.
Meat Technology Ireland (MTI) is a new industry-led initiative with significant funding from Enterprise Ireland that will create a ‘one-stop shop’ for meat processing research and technology. The launch took place at the Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin 15, today, Thursday, 13 April.
Speaking at the launch, Mary Mitchell O Connor TD, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, said: “Innovation 2020, the Government's strategy for research and development, science and technology, recognises the importance of innovation for the agri-food sector. Establishing Meat Technology Ireland, through Enterprise Ireland is one of the key initiatives under the Action Plan for Jobs, and will help to build a competitive advantage in the food sector, through investment in research and innovation capability. Its importance is to introduce companies to the expertise in research institutions with the aim of generating innovative technologies leading to job creation.”
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed TD, said: “Meat Technology Ireland has the potential to build on the success of our beef, and sheep sectors. By providing consumer focused research that can best inform processors and farmers, Meat Technology Ireland can be a driver for Ireland’s meat industry as it seeks to meet Food Wise 2025 targets, and mitigate the potential impacts of Brexit”.
CEO of Enterprise Ireland, Julie Sinnamon said: “Enterprise Ireland’s strategy is to support Irish businesses to build scale and expand their reach into international markets and we are delighted to back the establishment of Meat Technology Ireland which will directly support innovation in the agri-food sector and ultimately contribute to export growth. The need for greater levels of innovation among Irish companies as part of their response to Brexit is crucial and the launch of Meat Technology Ireland today is well timed, pooling the innovative talents of all the stakeholders involved to compete internationally offering best in class and further leveraging our strong international reputation in the provision of quality meat products.”
Prof Gerry Boyle, Director of Teagasc said: “Teagasc is delighted to be working with Enterprise Ireland, industry partners and other academic research organisations, to harness the collective information and research expertise available to the Irish meat industry, and to seek out new knowledge, to create innovative solutions for the commercial sector to exploit, for the betterment of all involved in the livestock sectors in Ireland. Meat Technology Ireland, hosted at Teagasc Ashtown, will serve as a hub to co-ordinate all beef and sheep meat processing research needs.”
IBEC’s Meat Industry Ireland Chairman, Phillip Carroll said: “The output of Meat Technology Ireland (MTI) will be an important enabler for further developing Irish beef and sheepmeat exports, meeting marketplace requirements and growing value. The involvement of nine major beef and sheepmeat processing companies in this industry-led collaborative innovation initiative is a clear demonstration of the Industry’s commitment to delivering on the growth potential of our sector and its strategic role in economic regional development.”
Meat Technology Ireland is an €8.1 million five-year research and innovation programme, developed by industry and co-funded by Enterprise Ireland and a consortium of nine beef and sheepmeat processing companies. The MTI is hosted by Teagasc at its Ashtown Food Research Facility in Dublin with Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), Dublin City University (DCU), University College Cork (UCC) and the Irish Cattle Breeders Federation (ICBF) involved as research providers. The companies behind the initiative are ABP Ireland, Ashbourne Meat Processors, Dawn Meats Group, Dunbia (Ireland), Hilton Foods Ireland, Irish Country Meats, Kepak Group, Liffey Meats, and Slaney Foods International.
Meat Technology Ireland emerged from a five-year research vision from IBEC’s Meat Industry Ireland industry group which was presented to Enterprise Ireland. John Malone was appointed as Chairman of Meat Technology Ireland last October and Dr. John Colreavy was appointed as Director .