Further funding of €42,000 approved for Bia Innovator Campus in Athenry

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Galway Daily news Athenry BIA Innovator campus ready to begin construction

Galway Rural Development has announced it will provide an additional €42,000 to the Bia Innovator Campus in Athenry, taking GRD’s total contribution to €200,000.

The latest grant approval towards furnishing and equipment comes as part of GRD’s focus on the LEADER food initiative, where food producers can get funding for a range of project types.

The €7 million food innovation campus remains on target to open in the summer and is expected to support 40 food companies and create 360 jobs in the region.

Conor Carty, Senior Manager at GRD, explained that this approval is part of a dedicated focus on supporting food initiatives.

“We in GRD are backing our neighbours in Bia Innovator with hot desking and reception facilities, and in their new training centre,” said Conor.

And we have backed several food and drink producers already in this programme such as Galway Craft Beers, Galway Goat Farm, and Killeen and Kylemore Farmhouse Cheeses.

“The food sector has been badly affected by the pandemic due to the restrictions on internal movement, so it is all the more important that we now build capacity and support enterprises so that we are readying ourselves for better days ahead.”

CEO of Galway Rural Development Steve Dolan added that the work done to date by Elaine Donohue, Sarah Hanley, and the Chairperson Peter Feeney, has been hugely impressive.

“We’re delighted they’re on-track for a 2021 opening and we are proud to be a part of what will undoubtedly be a successful investment,” he said.

“We are also keen to support the Bia Innovator team with other resources and we are now seeking participants for the Community Employment programme in a range of campus roles from Administration Support and Reception, to Facility Set-up and Maintenance.”