Milestone reached in build of Aberdeen food manufacturing innovation hub

A topping out ceremony has been held at the build of the ONE SeedPod food manufacturing innovation hub for north east Scotland’s £2.4 billion food manufacturing industry.

Robertson Group is leading the build of the 30,000 square foot facility, which is scheduled to open in 2025 at Scotland’s Rural College’s (SRUC) Craibstone Campus in Aberdeen.

Opportunity North East (ONE) is leading and co-funding the Aberdeen City Region Deal project, with ‘substantial’ funding from the UK and Scottish governments, as well as Scottish Enterprise and the Just Transition Fund.

ONE SeedPod will offer a range of benefits to businesses in the food and drink sector, with it providing a platform to scale production food in food-grade manufacturing units, develop new products and processes in the NPD kitchen, and showcase products online and in-person in the demo kitchen.

Additionally, it will offer a ‘vibrant’ community for entrepreneurs, founders, and business leaders to connect and access tailored support to accelerate growth.

A range of stakeholders recently gathered to celebrate the build reaching its highest point, with a ceremonial brick created using symbolic ingredients in the brick mould – oil representing liberty and prosperity; corn to enable the property to ripen in abundance; salt for purity; wine to represent hospitality and wisdom; and yew branches for longevity and renewal.

Elliot Robertson, chief executive officer of Robertson Group, said, “As the strategic partner of choice in the delivery of ONE SeedPod, Robertson fully supports the steps being taken in the diversification and transformation of the Aberdeen city region economy.

“The quality of the building is a reflection of the high reputation that the area has for its food and drink sector and will become a focal point for innovation and creativity. With over 22,000 people regionally employed in the sector, there’s a great wealth of experience and knowledge that will benefit the aspirations of ONE as it continues its important role in securing an alternative economic future for Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.”

Sir Ian Wood, chair of ONE, added, “The Aberdeen City Region Deal was the first of its kind with a vision to diversify our economy by investing in key sector innovation and growth. Food and drink is this region’s biggest industry after energy, employing 22,000 people, and the UK’s largest manufacturing sector. ONE and the project partners are investing in the growth potential of new and established businesses. We celebrate a milestone in the build today and look ahead to ONE SeedPod becoming the focal point for practical growth support to the sector.”