Avebe, Groningen University and Triade have reached agreement about building a new innovation centre at the Zernike Campus in Groningen. It will be a complete innovation centre with a laboratory, pilot factory, office and a client innovation centre. Agreements have also been reached on cooperation in the area of research and education.
Earlier this year, Avebe, a large co-op of starch potato growers, announced their wish to explore the option of moving the existing laboratory facilities in Veendam and Foxhol to Groningen. Last Friday on July 1, all three parties signed the agreement for further cooperation.
“By sharing knowledge with Avebe and working together with an important party such as the University of Groningen, we are able to make big strides when it comes to innovation”, says Ed Kraaijenzank, Finance Director of Avebe. “And because of the commitment from the Provincial Executive and the local authority we can do it in our own region!”
“The new innovation centre will also provide the opportunity of showing our knowledge to our purchasers; it is a wonderful calling card for Avebe and for the region. It’s something to be proud of”, Kraaijenzank continues.
“At the Zernike Campus, centre of the agrofood knowledge infrastructure in the north of the Netherlands, Avebe will be able to innovate together with scientists from the Groningen University and other businesses in the sector. More intensive collaboration with Avebe will also lead to more research. Avebe’s wish to have direct contact with students and doctoral candidates from various faculties makes it more attractive to study here”, says Jan de Jeu, Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors of Groningen University.
Room for startups
Besides room for offices and research, the new complex will also have a room for start-ups. This will offer students and innovators the opportunity to develop their own initiatives. The new site will provide room for 100 Avebe employees in R&D and Marketing. The actual move is planned for the end of 2017.