London-based Dairy Crest is investing $6.4 million in building a dedicated food innovation center on the Harper Adams University campus.

Dairy Crest research and development and technical staff will be relocated from the nearby Crudgington site onto the Harper Adams campus beginning in November, and then eventually move into the purpose-built food innovation center on campus.

Dairy Crest, known for its Cathedral City, Clover, Country Life and FRijj brands, aims to deliver 10% of year-on-year growth through new product development. The new innovation center will help the company achieve this with continued focus on scientific research, technology and product development.

The university and Dairy Crest also entered into a knowledge collaboration agreement that will further strengthen links between the two organizations. The partnership will enhance Dairy Crest’s product innovation through regular interaction with staff and students as well as providing Dairy Crest with a link into leading research within the agriculture and food sectors. Dairy Crest will further support the university curriculum by providing student placements, staff secondments and guest speakers.

“Innovation is at the heart of Dairy Crest’s business, and I see the new center as key to delivering our business strategy over the next few years,” says Mark Allen, chief executive officer of Dairy Crest. “We are already working closely with Harper Adams on several research projects, and I am certain this will be a long-term partnership, which will go from strength to strength. I am particularly pleased that the center is going to be at Harper Adams University—already a center of excellence in terms of food, farming and science education. This will also allow Dairy Crest to continue our long-standing association with Shropshire.”