Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed, has launched a number of initiatives as part of the inaugural Bioeconomy Ireland Day.
Minister Creed formally opened the new €22.2 million BEACON Bioeconomy SFI Research Centre at the National Bioeconomy Campus in Lisheen, Co. Tipperary. The event also saw the launch of the Irish Bioeconomy Foundation, which will be funded by Enterprise Ireland.
The new research centre includes partnerships with five research institutions and 10 industry partners, and will connect Ireland’s key bioeconomy sectors with fundamental and applied research excellence and innovation infrastructure.
He also announced the initiation of a Bioeconomy Public-Private Network of representatives from industry, society and relevant public bodies to inform the future development of the Irish bioeconomy.
This network will be a key output of the cross-Departmental Bioeconomy Implementation Group, co-chaired by the Departments of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and Communications, Climate Action and Environment.
Value & Environmental Benefits
“The aim of the day is to engage industry, the farming community, Government and wider society in the growing bioeconomy,” the Minister said, speaking at Lisheen in Co. Tipperary.
“This involves strengthening existing sustainable agri-food production systems, but also adding value and environmental benefits by producing innovative new bio-based products - for example, new types of food ingredients, fertilisers, packaging, energy, fuels, and services. Bio-based industries could create up to 1 million green, innovative jobs across the EU by 2030, especially in rural and coastal areas.”
Creed said that the bioeconomy will play a crucial role in supporting future economic development and employment, as well as providing a path towards reducing carbon emissions and our dependence on fossil resources.
“Making better use of our bio-based resources presents real opportunities. It means that our farmers, fishers, and foresters will in the future not only be partners with food companies, but also potentially with chemical, textile, and construction industries,” the Minister concluded.
“The agri-food sector has strong innovation potential to support Ireland’s transition to a more integrated sustainable, circular, low carbon economy, with economic, social and environmental benefits for rural Ireland.”
© 2018 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.