Professor Wanka is the first Federal Minister to visit the German Institute for Food Technologies for a considerable time. However, this was not Wanka's first visit to Quakenbrück. Four years ago - when she was still Minister for Science in Lower Saxony - she was able to see the quality of research in the laboratories, which had just been moved into. Dr. Volker Heinz, head of DIL, thanked the Minister for her support and the continuing interest in nutrition sciences, reporting that the Institute had made good progress in the meantime. This was confirmed by the initiator of the visit, member of the German Federal Parliament Andre Berghegger, who reported that DIL was one of the most active organisations in Lower Saxony procuring means from the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology's Industrial Community Research project.
Minister Wanka was impressed by this, and stated that her department was co-financing these projects to a significant extent due to the high relevance of Community Research for small- and medium-sized companies. Furthermore, the Federal Government's promotion strategy for organic-based economics offered many possibilities for using the skills available at DIL for research projects.
"In view of global interactions in food production, publicly financed research projects are the precondition for retaining the competititiveness of German and regional food industries", explained Dr. Heinz, and referred to further possibilities provided by technology transfer at the Business and Innovation Park Quakenbrück (BIQ), which is in the process of being established.
Minister Wanka was extremely pleased that the "DIL Project" has really got going 30 years after its founding and that non-university research can reach high levels in rural areas too. After seeing some product innovations at DIL, the Minister travelled back to Berlin.