Today, after a construction period of a year, the new Avebe Innovation Centre on Zernike Campus Groningen has been officially opened by René Paas, the King's Commissioner of Groningen. Employees of Avebe have been working for a couple of months now on innovations in potato starch and potato protein. The first start-up also has already settled into the building, and the next companies are waiting eagerly to become a part of this innovation hotspot in the field of Agrifood.
The building, constructed by the building combination BAM/Trebbe in commission by property deveolper Triade ia a copleet innovation centre with amongst other components, a laboratory, a pilot plant, offices and a customer innovation centre. Edwrad van der Meer, director of Triade: "It is all about collaboration. Both in the process of building this center together, as well as the exciting new projects we will be taking on together." Avebe has moved all of her existing lab facilities to the new building on Zernike Campus. Th Groningen knowledge institutions, the University of Groningen, the UMCG and the Hanze University of Applies Sciences provide a strong link when it comes to collaboration in education and research.
Besides space for offices and research, the building also provides room for start-ups in the Innolab Agrifood, developed by Campus Groningen and partners. Innolab Agrifood stimulates and supports entrepreneurship, and facilitates innovative initiatives. Besides of offering laboratory facilities, business support is offered in the fields of business development, business strategy, intellectual property and patenting, legal aspects, budgeting, finance and risk analysis. This offers tsudents and innovators the opportunity to develop their own initiatives. Bert Jansen, CEO Avebe: "Innovation is in our DNA and helps us to achieve a good return for our members, not only today but also in the future. By combining forces, this can now be done faster, better and more efficiently. This will enable us to respond even better to market developments."
During the opening, over 200 invitees experienced for themselves what is going on in the field of potato starch and protein innovation. Visistors were able to visit the laboratories after the opening, to see and also taste the products that hold ingredients from the potato. Potato starch and protein is used in food, animal nutrition, building and industry. Not everybody is aware of the potential of the potato. The innovation centre makes this visible on a prominent location in Groningen.
Avebe is a cooperation of about 2300 farmers from the Netherlands and Germany. The starch potatoes of these members are processed yearly to premium ingredients on the basis of potato starch and protein. They add value to food and also industrial uses globally. Avebe constantly works on the development of new posibilities and uses of starch potatoes and focuses on sustainable continuity. The company has 1300 employees worldwide and factories inthe Netherlands, Germany and Sweden. It has sale agencies in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The head office is in Veendam, the Netherlands.
About Innolab Agrifood
Innolab AgriFood stimulates and supports entrepreneurship, and facilitates innovative initiatives. Innolab Agrifood is based on Zernike Campus Groningen and is part of the Innolab Groningen formula of Campus Groningen. Besides of offering laboratory facilities, business support is offered in the fields of business development, business strategy, intellectual property and patenting, legal aspects, budgeting, finance and risk analysis. Innolab Groningen gets the startup quickly from good idea to real product development and market introduction.