It is a tribute to the collaborative work by all partners that Food HQ has benefited from a $100,000 grant from the Provincial Growth Fund to investigate developments that could provide exciting prospects for the region.
Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones made the announcement while visiting the region this week .
Food HQ CEO Abby Thompson said “This funding will be used to undertake the development of a business case which will form the basis of the subsequent investor information and application to the Provincial Growth Fund.
Minister Jones said “The PGF support towards these projects will help Manawatū-Whanganui progress work important to their region and ensure projects become investment-ready.”
This region has a long proud history in the primary industries, and the agricultural and horticultural footprint in the lower North Island is strong. Science and research development in agri-food already undertaken by FoodHQ partner’s has significance regionally, nationally and globally highlighting the Manawatū region’s role, capability and leadership in continuing to add value to New Zealand’s primary industries.
FoodHQ’s board chair, Sue Foley, says this funding is a real acknowledgement of the high calibre of work being done by the hundreds of food scientists who are based here, and the collaboration between FoodHQ’s partnering organisations. “This is hugely exciting and this project has got the potential to put the region on a global stage.
The Ministry for Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) will work with FoodHQ to determine the scope and implementation of the funding through a collaborative process with all parties.
FoodHQ chief executive Dr. Abby Thompson said the confirmation of funding for the business case was a “significant first step” and testament to the good amount of work done by the main stakeholders. “I am delighted with today’s announcement of funding to develop our FoodHQ value proposition and excited to lead this work on behalf of the FoodHQ partners. As a partnership we believe our depth of capability in science and technology is fundamental to fueling the economic growth of the Manawatu and regional New Zealand by increasing export revenues from high value food and agri-food technologies.”
FoodHQ is a collaborative partnership that creates value from the ideas and collective thinking from one of the world’s leading clusters of food expertise and facilities – over 2000 researchers and food experts mostly located within a square kilometer of their base in Palmerston North. The FoodHQ partnership includes Massey University, Fonterra, AgResearch, Plant and Food Research, The Riddet Institute, The Factory, New Zealand Food Safety Science and Research Centre, Palmerston North City Council, Manawatu District Council, Central Economic Development Agency, ESR and Cawthron Institute.
About the PGF
The New Zealand Government has allocated three billion dollars over a three-year term to invest in regional economic development through the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF).
Abby Thompson, Chief Executive Officer
Mobile: +64 21 774 864