Food Business Incubation Centre

Setting up your own food business or developing an existing enterprise is expensive and complex. One of the biggest challenges is finding premises suitable for food manufacture and fitting these out to meet the exacting legislative requirements of today’s marketplace. At the Food Business Incubation Centre (FBIC) you can transform your product concepts and ideas into a successful thriving business.

The Food Business Incubation Centre is situated at Loughry Campus in Cookstown, N. Ireland. The Centre was opened in 1998 and provides the food supply chain with eight purpose-built food processing factory units finished to the highest standards in two sizes, 175m2 and 225m2.

The Food Business Incubation Centre is designed to facilitate

  • entrepreneurs wishing to establish new innovative food businesses and
  • established food businesses wishing to develop, test and commercialise new concepts without impacting on current factory operations.

Each of the eight factory units are ‘stand alone’ and contain:

  • a segregated arrival bay, ambient store and chill
  • a temperature controlled production area
  • a dispatch bay and chill
  • a low pressure cleaning system, air handling system, compressed air supply, 180Kw electricity supply (3 phase and single phase), water
  • office, changing rooms and toilet facilities

The Centre also offers access to:

  • packaging, chill and freezer storage facilities
  • blast freezer
  • canteen services
  • board room and meeting rooms
  • technical assistance when required
  • environmental management systems

The Centre is managed during normal office hours by a Manager with support from a food technician. Unit holders can also access a range of technical support services.

Current clients include:

Unit 1 – Morrow Foods www.morrowfoods.comExternal link

Unit 2 – Cooked Meat Solutions

Unit 3 – En Place Foods

Units 5, 7 & 8 – Good 4 U www.good4u.co.ukExternal link

Unit 6 – Big Pot Co. Ltd

The Food Business Incubation Centre is an integral part of the College of Agriculture Food and Rural Enterprise – Loughry Campus facilities and of the Northern Ireland Department of Agriculture & Rural Development. It has established links with the following organisations:

We are therefore able to act as host to facilitate client meetings with these organisations.

How to Apply?

If you are interested in viewing the Food Business Incubation Centre please contact Audrey Kelly at audrey.kelly@daera-ni.gov.ukor 028 867 68154 to arrange this.

Application for a licence to operate in the Centre is through completion of an application form  and submission of a business plan outlining the proposed project. Plans are assessed against established criteria by the Centre’s Advisory Board.

Food Enterprise Development Programme

Not all entrepreneurs are ready to go into full scale production or have the necessary knowledge skills to successfully manufacture and market their product. Loughry has developed a programme to provide these necessary skills and allow limited production runs to test-market demand for a new product using the unique food technology facilities and resources at the campus.

Programme participants can avail of the Food Technology Centre approved premises to enable them to carry out product development or pilot production runs for a limited period of time.

For further information on the Food Enterprise Development Programme, please contact Caroline Hammond on 028 8675 7500 or email caroline.hammond@daera-ni.gov.uk

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