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Fera Science’s Dr Patrick Bonnett Joins David Cameron’s Delegation to Sofia Science & Technology Park

Fera Science’s Dr Patrick Bonnett Joins David Cameron’s Delegation to Sofia Science & Technology Park

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Organised as part of the Prime Minister David Cameron’s drive for EU competitiveness, over 150 delegates heard presentations from amongst others, the Bulgarian Minister of Economy and UKTI Regional Director for Central & Eastern Europe and Fera’s very own Dr Patrick Bonnett.  Patrick Bonnett, Head of Economic Growth at Fera Science Ltd and Board Member of the UK Science Park Association was invited to speak at the UK Trade & Investment GREAT Innovation Exchange at the opening of the Sofia Science & Technology Park – Bulgaria’s first Science Park.

Patrick’s presentation on: “Adding value across the agri-food chain” focussed on Fera’s development of the Northern Powerhouse for Agri-Food Innovation. It considered how a Science Park - the National Agri-Food Innovation Campus can act as a focus for such activities, the lessons learnt and their relevance for new developments such as the Sofia Science Park. 

Hosted at the new Science & Technology Park in Sofia, Bulgaria, the GREAT Innovation Exchange brought together an impressive gathering of UK & Bulgarian policy makers, key players in science & innovation, academia and business representatives. Opened by Bulgarian Minister of Economy, Bozhidar Lukarski; British Prime Minister, David Cameron and Boyko Borissov, Bulgarian Prime Minister / President of the Republic of Bulgaria were in attendance at this event; designed to “promote cross border innovation partnerships and to explore the key role that ‘science parks’ can play in innovation”.

Opened in December 2015, The Science & Technology Park is a €50 million EU funded government led project to advance research, innovation & technology growth in Bulgaria (www.sofiatech.bg), especially in the fields of ICT, biotech, agro tech and low carbon technologies, comprising:

• Incubator – to support innovative start-up and spin-off companies

• Innovation Forum  the meeting and event space of the Tech Park, hosting conferenced & forums

• Museum / Experimentarium – to provide a public space for interaction with science, particularly kids

• Laboratory Complex – to support collaborative R&D with the academic & scientific community.

• The latest Global Innovation Index, published in September 2015, shows that Britain remains as the second most innovative country in the world. The GREAT Innovation Showcase display is intended to inspire and showcase current & recent examples of British Innovation. 

Picture shows from L-R Bulgarian Prime Minister, Boyko Borissov; Prime Minister David Cameron; Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev and Dr Patrick Bonnett of Fera Science Ltd. 

Who are Fera?

Fera, previously The Food and Environment Research Agency, was established in 1914 and has state of the art laboratory facilities at Sand Hutton, York. With over 550 staff on site, 350 dedicated to science, testing over 100,000 samples per annum and dealing with organisations in over 120 countries around the world to ensure the quality and safety of their products and services. We believe the world is a better place working together in partnership.


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