New £3.5M science labs to boost food and drink NPD

The new science labs will boost food industry NPD, claims the university

New £3.5M science laboratories at Abertay University, Dundee – designed to boost food and drink industry new product development (NPD) – will be opened officially on May 30.

The new facilities – part of a complex dedicated to food, forensics and biomedical sciences – will include a New Product Development Laboratory and a Consumer Experience Laboratory.

The New Product Development Laboratory will be used for pilot-scale food manufacture schemes across a range of food processes and industries. 

Designed to food manufacturing and environmental health standards, the zone features a controlled barrier, change area, walk-in cold room and store.

Environmental health standards

The lab has a preparation and serving room linked to a kitchen plus an adjoining room. The room can be used for consumer experience testing, student tutorials and small group working.

The Consumer Experience Laboratory comprises 12 climatically controlled booths designed for the sensory analysis of food.

Two further labs will be dedicated to the university’s forensic science and biomedical science divisions. Both are linked, equipped with two high-tech fume cupboards, and designed specifically to  accommodate 30 students each.

Features include a controllable camera, independent monitors and a total of 15 display screens which can be operated collectively or independently by teaching staff and students.

Learning and research

Professor Carl Schaschke, head of the School of Science, Engineering and Technology, said the new facilities will provide a major boost to learning and research.

“This project forms part of the university’s commitment to excellence in teaching and research,he said.

“Not only will the new labs benefit Abertay students for years to come, the facilities have huge potential for business and we already have a significant engagement with a number of local companies who are keen to work with us.”

The new laboratories will be opened by biologist Dame Anne Glover.

Meanwhile, news emerged last week that Genius Foods had agreed a partnership with Queen Margaret University’s (QMU’s) new food science laboratory to extend the product range of the gluten­free bakery.

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