Monday 26 September 2016

Irish company makes biggest breakthrough for microbiology testing in dairy industry in 100 years

Ground-breaking Oculer system to cut lead times for identifying thermoduric bacteria from 72 to 24 hours

Published 14/12/2015 | 19:59

Joey English, Micro Technician, Oculer shows Minister of Environment, Community & Local Government some of the process at Oculer.
Pic Sean Curtin Fusionshooters
Joey English, Micro Technician, Oculer shows Minister of Environment, Community & Local Government some of the process at Oculer. Pic Sean Curtin Fusionshooters

AN Irish firm has made what is being described as the biggest breakthrough for microbiology testing in the dairy industry in a century - and it is hoped the new system can save the dairy industry here up to €200m.

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Oculer, a Tipperary-based dairy technology company and spin-off from the Technopath Group has revealed a ground-breaking system for detecting Thermoduric Bacteria in dairy products that it is hoped will save millions annually through reduced farmer penalties, superior product shelf-life and enhanced protein concentration.

The Oculer technology will cut detection times for Thermoduric Bacteria from the current global standard of 72 hours to 24 hours, with an alarm to signal potential risk of the presence of the bacteria triggered in as little as six hours. 

Officially launched by Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Alan Kelly, the company will create at least 20 jobs in sales, R&D and engineering over the next two years.

Rapid detection of the bacteria will significantly reduce spoiling of product and help eradicate shelf-life issues and advance the elimination of the bacteria entirely in other milk related products, such as milk powder destined for the infant formula industry. 

Launching the product, Minister for Environment Alan Kelly said:  “Oculer’s achievement in this international breakthrough for microbiology diagnostics is huge validation of Ireland’s place as a global leader in dairying.  With sales of dairy products forecasted to reach $494 billion in 2015, this breakthrough has the potential to reach into every single market in the world. 

“It also again proves Ireland is a leading international player for research and development, spinning out some of the smartest technology companies on the planet.  At a local level I am immensely proud that one such company is here on our own doorstep and have been delighted to work with the team here over the past two years as they build towards this monumental day that will bring positive change for the industry across the world.”

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