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Minister Coveney supporting UCC Diploma in Specialty Food Production - 20 students from Cork, Laois, Limerick, Kerry, Tipperary and Waterford to benefit from bursaries

- University College Cork course aims to build careers and talent in the specialty and artisan sector -

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, announced this week that his Department is providing a bursary to twenty students undertaking a one year Diploma in Speciality Food Production at University College Cork. The students are from Cork, Laois, Limerick, Tipperary, Kerry and Waterford.  The Minister said that that he was delighted that his Department was able to support the Diploma which "aims to build careers and develop talent in the speciality and artisan food sector. We are experiencing unprecedented interest in this area, both locally and on export markets. The potential of the artisan and specialty sector was recognised in the Food Harvest 2020 Report and it offers great opportunities to young entrepreneurs who are committed to developing agri-food businesses".

The Minister noted that University College Cork had an international reputation in food science and was noted for its commitment to training in food technology and food business and to rural development. "This Diploma will equip the participants with specialised skills and an understanding of the potential for developing specialist agri-food businesses which add value to the economy.  The agri-food sector is central to economic recovery and growth and whose potential was recognised in Food Harvest 2020".

Minister Coveney wished every success to those doing the Diploma and to their future in food.

Notes for the Editor

The Diploma course is being held at the Food Industry Training Unit at UCC and is aimed at speciality food producers, those who are interested in developing speciality foods as a commercial venture and those who support the development of the sector. Twenty of the students for the current course will be supported with bursaries (covering 70% of the cost) funded by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. The twenty students are from Cork (12), Laois (2), Limerick (1), Tipperary (2), Kerry (2) and Waterford (1).  UCC has an established international reputation in food education, research and training programmes and is noted for its commitment to Food Science and Technology, Food Business, Food and Health, Nutritional Sciences, Processing Engineering and Rural Development.

Overall caption for each: Minister Simon Coveney met with UCC staff members and three Artisan food producers (graduates of the Diploma in Speciality Food Production) on the occasion of the launch of new student Bursaries for the participants of the Diploma in Speciality Food Production.

Photo PR 243/11 - 02.12.11

Left to right:  Professor Gerald Fitzgerald (Head, Department of Microbiology and Deputy Director, Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre), Dr Michael Murphy, President of UCC, Minister Simon Coveney, Dr Colin Sage (Department of Geography and Academic Director, Diploma in Speciality Food Production)

Photo PR 243/11 - 02.12.11

Left to right:  Caroline Rigney (Curraghchase Free Range Pork); Philip O'Connor (Seymours of Cork Biscuits); Minister Simon Coveney;  Dr Colin Sage (Department of Geography and Academic Director, Diploma in Speciality Food Production); Gerald Burns (Ardrahan Lullaby Milk); Dr Angela Sheehan ( Programme Manager, Diploma in Speciality Food Production)

Photo PR 243/11 - 02.12.11

Left to right: Caroline Rigney (Curraghchase Free Range Pork); Philip O'Connor (Seymours of Cork Biscuits); Minister Simon Coveney; Professor Gerald Fitzgerald (Head, Department of Microbiology and Deputy Director, Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre); Gerald Burns (Ardrahan Lullaby Milk)

Date Released: 02 December 2011