Unilever and Wageningen University & Research share research facilities
11 November 2019 - Unilever has moved some of its advanced analysis equipment to join the Shared Research Facilities of the Wageningen Campus ecosystem at Wageningen Electron Microscopy Centre and MAGNEFY. ‘We are here to celebrate’ says Johan Hazekamp (Unilever Ecosystem manager) at the start of the meeting to mark the opening of the Shared Research Facilities, ‘and to meet and greet each other working in these areas’.
Unilever will have high-field NMR instruments Electron microscopy facilities operational in the joint labs and will make these instruments also available to Wageningen University & Research (WUR). Vice versa Unilever will also have access to the advanced NMR instruments of Wageningen University. Thus, a strong joint NMR capability for food compositional and microstructural analysis will be established on the Wageningen Campus.
Sharing research facilities creates an ecosystem in which all parties can make better use of facilities, as well as enable interactions and making using of each other’s expertise, leading to more innovations, says Tamara Rozen, Director operations of AFSG and member of the Shared Research Facilities steering commission. In its strategic plan, Wageningen University & Research has made clear that sharing research facilities as part of a dynamic ecosystem stimulates success and collaboration.
Unilever Foods Innovation Centre has landed in Wageningen, in its new building which is called Hive. ‘A buzzing place’, says Manfred Aben, site leader of Hive and global VP R&D for Foods and Refreshment. Unilever is welcomed into the Wageningen Ecosystem, thereby sharing equipment and working together on research questions and novel innovations. Aben foresees that this leads to new connections being formed, which are often complementary, state-of-the-art and a sustainable use of investments and knowledge.
A big thank you to the WUR teams of Wageningen Electron Microscopy Centre, MAGNEFY and to the Unilever team, who have worked hard to make this possible and finding new ways of working by sharing research facilities.