Food In Canada

NSERC grants $1.75M to Niagara College’s food innovation centre

By Food in Canada staff   

Research & Development Business development Food and beverage accelerator Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Niagara College Technology Access Centre

The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) has awarded a $1.75 million renewal of Technology Access Centre (TAC) funding to the Niagara College (NC) Research & Innovation division’s Canadian Food and Wine Institute (CFWI) Innovation Centre for another five years, at $350,000 per year. The renewal grant is through NSERC’s College and Community Innovation (CCI) program.

The CFWI Innovation Centre TAC, located at NC’s Daniel J. Patterson Campus in Niagara-on-the-Lake, is a food and beverage accelerator. The team of experts in food and beverage science and safety work alongside students to offer SMEs innovative solutions from concept to shelf.

“This is exciting news, as it allows us to further our delivery of high-quality services to local and domestic food and beverage SMEs, in order to enhance their global competitiveness,” said Marc Nantel, PhD, vice-president, Research & External Relations at NC. “We are able to better serve the innovation needs of these food and beverage companies who may have had difficulty developing new products and services for lack of affordable research expertise, equipment and facilities.”

“This renewal also means our student research assistants, who work alongside our experts and industry partners, will continue to access and participate in trail-blazing research and development at Niagara College, an opportunity that provides unparalleled career-ready advantages,” said NC president Sean Kennedy.

The CFWI Innovation Centre team offers a full suite of services to support industry innovation and commercialization of new products and processes. From new recipe development to shelf-life testing and nutritional labelling, the CFWI Innovation Centre pairs industry partners with faculty, recent graduates and students with the right expertise and equipment to meet industry needs. In all cases, the intellectual property developed during the project belongs to the industry partner.

During its first five-year grant operating as a TAC, the CFWI Innovation Centre served approximately 340 food and beverage businesses, with more than 490 technical services and 93 applied research projects. More than 100 students have gained hands-on research experience at the Centre to provide a wealth of innovative solutions to industry partners.

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