Dáil Éireann - Volume 527 - 05 December, 2000
Written Answers. - Capital Investment Programme.
Mr. O'Shea Mr. O'Shea
81. Mr. O'Shea asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development the progress being made with regard to the commitment given in the Review of the Action Programme for the Millennium to provide a substantial capital investment programme in state of the art laboratories and in the infrastructure for the handling of waste material for our food processing industry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28442/00]
Mr. Walsh Mr. Walsh
Minister for Agriculture, Food and Rural Development (Mr. Walsh): In so far as my Department's laboratories are concerned, the Central Veterinary Research Laboratory, the Central Meat Control Laboratory, the Pesticide Control Laboratory and the Official Seed Testing Station in Abbotstown and the Dairy Science Laboratory will move to a new site at Backweston.
The Office of Public Works, in association with the design team for the new complex, and in consultation with staff of my Department, have prepared a draft masterplan for the site, a common facilities plan and general layout arrangements for the industrial laboratories. A planning application will be submitted shortly.
The position with regard to capital investment for the food processing industry is that under the national development plan assistance is available to companies with the capacity and ambition to significantly grow their sales and exports, within the context of support packages for approved business plans. In order to ensure the protection of the environment, all projects must conform to national and environmental legislation, including waste management, before assistance can be provided. While public funding can be provided towards the modernisation of plant and equipment, the main focus of support will be on added value and increasing competitiveness.
In addition, a figure of £1 million has been included in the national plan to grant-aid fallen animal collection centres to improve their handling and waste facilities and their general infrastructure for the collection and safe disposal of moribund animals.
Dáil Éireann 527 Written Answers. Capital Investment Programme.