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According to Yonhap News,
(SEJONG = Yonhap News) A leading European food research institute has agreed to set up its Asian base in South Korea, which is seeking to become a hub for the Northeast Asian food market, the South Korean government said Wednesday.
The TNO Nutrition and Food Research Institute signed a memorandum of understanding on Tuesday for investment in the country's national food cluster in Iksan, located some 200 kilometers southwest of Seoul in North Jeolla Province, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
TNO, based in the Netherlands, plans to establish its Asian headquarters or a research center within the food cluster by 2015, the ministry said in a press release.
"The TNO Research Institute possesses outstanding expertise in the field of food processing, safety and functionality assessment," said Lim Jung-bin, head of the ministry's food industry policy bureau. "Joining hands with the Foodpolis (food cluster), which owns various support facilities to accommodate product safety, functionality and packaging support, will create synergy for both parties.
"We will continue to do our best in attracting more global food companies and research institutes as our tenants, and we believe this will be out first step toward becoming a core hub for the Northeast Asian food market," he added.
A total of US$521 million has been invested in the national food cluster project, which is designed to help boost exports and R&D capabilities of food-related companies and research institutes.
Established in 1930, TNO is one of leading food research institutes in Europe that specializes in the development and commercialization of new food products. Its annual sales reached some $850 million in 2012, according to the ministry.
It is the second Dutch institute to have agreed to invest in South Korea's food cluster following NIZO Food Research.
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Source: Yonhap News (Nov. 27, 2013)
** This article was translated from the Korean.