Scotland’s Business Minister is given an update on the Digital Dairy Chain project during his recent tour of SRUC’s Barony Campus.
Professor Richard Dewhurst (Head of SRUC’s Dairy Research Centre) explained to Ivan McKee how the £21 million Digital Dairy Chain project would create new jobs and grow the economy of Cumbria and South West Scotland.
The MSP, who spoke at the launch of the project earlier this Summer, was told that it would focus on collaboration and innovation in the region’s dairy sector which produces nearly two billion litres of milk a year. It is expected to create 600 new jobs, and deliver an additional £60 million a year for the region.
As well as helping to move the dairy industry towards Net Zero, the project will help to build a talent pipeline of skilled workers in the area to create innovative products and new ways of working. Rachael Wakefield from CENSIS, one of Scotland’s Innovation Centres and a partner on the project, demonstrated some of the advanced sensor technology that is being used in the dairy sector.
In a tour organised by South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE), the MSP was also told about the Dairy Nexus. This is a planned £8 million innovation facility at SRUC’s Barony Campus that will be funded by the Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal. Dairy Nexus aims to transform the region’s dairy sector into a sustainable and resilience Net Zero circular bioeconomy.
Ivan McKee hailed the project for spearheading advanced, sustainable dairy production in Scotland, in turn supporting the country’s emissions targets.
“The Scottish government’s Borderlands Deal supports the Barony Campus’ ambition to be a world-renowned centre for low carbon innovation ensuring Scotland transitions towards a Net Zero future, with all regions achieving their potential.”
Professor Wayne Powell added that the dairy projects were ‘hugely exciting and transformational’ for the college and Scotland as a whole.
“Innovation is vital if Scotland is to meet targets on Net Zero and job creation,” he said.
“Projects like the Digital Dairy Chain and Dairy Nexus are outstanding examples of how SRUC is helping to lead the way in the green economic recovery.”