Cawthron Institute joins FoodHQ

The country’s largest independent science organisation, Cawthron Institute, has become the newest member of FoodHQ.

FoodHQ is New Zealand’s international gateway for collaborative food research – generating value for the global food industry through innovation across the food value chain. Other members are AgResearch, AsureQuality, ESR, Fonterra, Massey University, Plant & Food Research, the Riddet Institute and BCC.

Cawthron Institute chief executive, Professor Charles Eason, says the organisation is pleased to be joining FoodHQ.

“We believe it’s essential that seafood is represented alongside Agrifoods in this collaboration. We see FoodHQ as a great opportunity to help add value to New Zealand’s food export economy,” says Professor Eason.

Cawthron Institute brings internationally-recognised experience and scientific expertise in aquaculture and seafood safety to the collaboration.

“Cawthron is the centre for seafood research and development in the top of the South, with a focus on production, protection and adding value to seafood.”

With almost 200 scientists, laboratory technicians, researchers and specialist staff, Cawthron’s focus is food and water research. It has unique expertise in aquaculture research, marine and freshwater resource management, food safety and quality, algal technologies, biosecurity and analytical testing. It also runs community and education programmes.

Based in the Nelson region, Cawthron Institute’s facilities include biosecure and fully-accredited laboratories and the purpose-built Cawthron Aquaculture Park at Glenhaven – New Zealand’s largest land-based aquaculture facility and home to both research and industry operations. The Institute works with partners throughout New Zealand and across the world.

Dr Tom Richardson, AgResearch chief executive and chairman of the FoodHQ Board, says having Cawthron Institute as a partner is a great addition for FoodHQ.

“Cawthron is recognised around the world for its expertise in seafood safety science, biosecurity, resource management and research. Its Aquaculture Park is an outstanding demonstration of what can be achieved with industry partners.”

“The addition of Cawthron Institute to the FoodHQ family is significant because it brings aquaculture science to the FoodHQ table. It is also significant as it is the first South Island-based organisation to join FoodHQ as the collaboration gains traction nationwide.”

“FoodHQ is New Zealand’s international gateway for collaborative food research,” says Dr Richardson. “It is based in Palmerston North and organisations such as Cawthron Institute and ESR have recognised the value of becoming a member of the group. They see FoodHQ as a gateway and want to be part of the collaboration.”

With the exception of Cawthron and ESR, the research and innovation members of the FoodHQ family are located alongside each other in Palmerston North’s Fitzherbert Science Park and Massey University’s Manawatū campus.

More than 2200 food scientists, engineers, researchers, Ph.D. students, professionals and educators are employed by FoodHQ partners. They connect, collaborate and have the resources and leadership to build and maintain links, recruit and retain top talent and responsibly manage New Zealand’s resources for a sustainable future while serving the international food industry and growing our economy.

FoodHQ is poised to deliver on the Government’s Business Growth Agenda, which calls for a trebling of the real value of food exports. FoodHQ was launched in 2013 – growing out of Food Innovation New Zealand, which was established in 2009. FoodHQ’s 20-year strategic plan outlines how the organisations will collectively play a key role in the global food community and how it will further unify established research organisations.


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