Work has commenced on the establishment of a Kerry Group Global Technology & Innovation Centre in Ireland to serve the Group’s global and regional customers in the EMEA Region.
Kerry Group will invest €100 million in the new campus in Naas which will accommodate 800 people when opened by year-end 2014 and a further 100 positions when fully commissioned in 2016.
Welcoming An Taoiseach and the invited guests, Denis Buckley, Kerry Group Chairman said: “The new EMEA centre will serve as a key focal point for Kerry’s customer engagement activities providing strategic customers with access to the Group’s complete breadth and depth of technologies, scientific research, innovation and applications expertise across food, beverage and pharmaceutical markets.”
Taoiseach Enda Kenny, who officiated at the ground-breaking ceremony, said: “The Kerry Global Technology & Innovation Centre at this site will be a landmark, industry-leading campus, supporting Ireland’s global reputation for excellence in research, technology development and innovation in the food & beverage industry. Kerry is a world leader in the food industry and it is most welcome that the Group’s new Technology & Innovation Centre will provide 900 high-skilled positions at the facility on completion as well as 600 construction jobs straight away.”
Kenny went on to outline Government plans for the agricultural industry: “We are working to achieve the target of 75% of food and drink exports being supplied by companies participating in the ‘Origin Green’ sustainability charter by the end of 2014.
“In addition to improving competitiveness and efficiency for all farm enterprises the Government has put in place a number of measures to support the next generation of farming.
“These include favourable tax treatment for young farmers, focused groups at farm level to deliver technology adoption programmes, land restructuring relief and increased usage of genomic selection in animal breeding programmes.”
“Kerry Group employs 24,000 people globally and already has over 3,500 employees in Ireland,” Kenny continued. “I’m delighted that this figure is set to grow by a further 900 with this new facility, thereby firmly establishing Kerry Group as Ireland’s largest player in the food industry.”
Pictured from left to right are: Eoin O’Connell, President & CEO, Kerry Ingredients & Flavours EMEA; Gerry Behan, President & CEO, Kerry Ingredients & Flavours; An Taoiseach Enda Kenny T.D.; Denis Buckley, Chairman, Kerry Group