Food and Biofuel Innovation Centre
The food and biofuel innovation centre (FBIC) is a major investment in university teaching and research. It is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund and BBSRC. SABMiller are partners in the project and have developed a pilot scale brewery within the centre. The centre is a combination of three interconnected areas – one for brewing science, one for food processing and one for bioenergy production. Each area has the plant and equipment to carry out research, development and teaching.
The brewing science laboratories contain their own mini experimental brewery and also have access to the SABMiller pilot plant. International brewer SABMiller will use its pilot plant to develop its own products and for research into the brewing process.
The food science hall has the plant, equipment and test facilities that you’d expect to find in a number of different food industries – examples are: extrusion, bakery equipment, retorting facilities, a development kitchen, QC laboratory and sensory analysis area. The combination of these facilities in one building allows the development of new products from conception to consumption. An innovation area can be set aside so that creation and development of products can occur discreetly.
The area dedicated to biofuel has equipment to develop new and efficient ways to turn waste and non-food agricultural products (e.g. wood and straw) into alcohol for use as fuel. More information on biofuel research can be found on the biofuel website.