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Macphie and Interface will address funding

18 January 2012

Ashley Baker, head of research & development at Macphie of Glenbervie, and Dr Siobhán Jordan, director of Interface, will deliver a joint presentation at Appetite for Engineering on 12 June at the Hinckley Island Hotel in Leicestershire

Macphie of Glenbervie, the Scottish food manufacturer, has worked on academic partnerships through assistance from Interface. The two companies will talk at Appetite about how they have co-operated on groundbreaking work being undertaken to help deliver improvements to Macphie's end product as well as increase efficiency in the manufacturing process.

Macphie is a family-run business that has been creating food ingredients for more than 80 years. It attributes its success to the fact its bakers and chefs never tire of developing the next generation of exciting products, recipes and solutions.

It employs 300 people between its headquarters in the north-east of Scotland and its site at Tannochside, near Glasgow. The company is organised into three commercial divisions: Industrial, Wholesale and Retail. In 2009 Macphie had a sales turnover of £40.7m and net profits of £2.4m.

Interface, on the other hand, was established in Scotland in 2005, and is funded by The Scottish Funding Council, and also receives financial support from the Scottish Government under the SEEKIT programme to support the participation of the research institutes.

It helps companies source funding schemes, which in the recession offered a crucial source of finance and provided businesses with the chance of future growth. About 10% of the companies with whom Interface works are from the food and beverage sector. The projects on which they've facilitated are wide-ranging, from improving the shelflife of oatcakes with Nairns to developing testing the feasability of pasteurisation of fruit juices using advanced microwave technology.

* Siobhán has been Director of Interface since its inception in August 2005. She has a wealth of experience in both business and academia, having supported over 1200 companies across all sectors make productive links to academic departments over the past few years. See www.interface-online.org.uk

She holds degrees in Biotechnology and process engineering and a PhD in human genetics. Previous roles have included team leader at the MRC Human Genertics Unit, Edinburgh and managing the application and award processes for the Scottish Proof of Concept Programme. In this role she was responsible for ensuring that those leading edge technologies which are capable of commercialisation within Scotland were identified and financially supported.

Siobhán has developed programmes to facilitate networking and mentoring of female entrepreneurs amongst the Proof of Concept Programme Associates in addition to nurturing those associates who were considering establishing spin-out companies.

* Ashley is a graduate in Biochemistry from Glasgow University and has worked previously in Research and Development and Project Management roles, in the UK, Europe and US for multinational and UK based companies.

He has R&D experience in the household products, personal/ beauty care and food and drink sectors. His project management experience includes integration of acquisitions and process development, capital investment projects across a number of product manufacturing sectors. He currently heads a team of 24 in research and development at Macphie.


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