FIET is hosted by Massey University in partnership with the University of Otago, the University of Auckland, Plant&Food Research, AgResearch and the Riddet Institute. We work to develop and apply new technologies for the food processing industry.
The programme is funded by the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment with co-funding from commercial food companies. MBIE have invested $16.5M over six years (June 2015-2021), targeting pre-commercialisation research and development activities.
The programme is governed by an independent board and is supported by an industrial advisory group and its Te Roopu Māori advisory group.
FIET involves over 50 engineers, scientists, post docs and PhD students as well as a number of industry partners. It is led by the Programme Director Ross Holland and Chief Technologist Professor Richard Archer and is supported by a part time administrator.
The research team is composed of scientists and engineers across the six institutions, supported by PhD students and post-doctoral or research fellows.
Collaboration is a key feature of the FIET programme. Each project group involves more than one provider partner. A Science Management Team, representing all provider partners, meets regularly to ensure co-ordination of effort across all projects.
The portfolio of projects is selected to provide span across many food sectors. Some projects have more stretchy research and some are closer to development and some mix these together. All projects have process technology at heart, but all have chosen one or more products and raw materials as models to drive technology development.
All projects have at least one New Zealand industry partner, perhaps an equipment manufacturer, perhaps a processor, to provide edge and direction.