Senate plans new food cluster to boost industry in Hamburg
The food industry is a pillar of regional employment with around 123,000 employees and accounts for 5.6 per cent of the overall workforce, according to a study on a potential food industry cluster presented in late May. The survey was conducted on behalf of the Ministry of Economics and the Institute for Innovation and Technology. Michael Westhagemann, Senator for Economics, remarked: "A strong food cluster is needed in terms of economic policy. Such a cluster would serve as a networking and mediation platform and pursue closer co-operation between the various industry stakeholders across the Hamburg Metropolitan Region. The study offers possible solutions for a structure, potential and the recommendations for action on a 'Food Cluster Hamburg.'"
Good framework conditions
The 130-page study analyses the food industry and highlights the 12 mega trends of the future. Safety, health, knowledge and culture have led to increased awareness of healthy nutrition among consumers. Other important criteria are "affordability", "enjoyment" and "variety", the study has found. The framework conditions are already in place, according to the study. The industry is highly diverse with numerous global corporations and innovative companies of all kinds in the food sector and associated services. Together they form the basis of a successful urban and regional cluster. Hamburg's hub function for food with the port, the wholesale market and the entire logistics is a unique selling point for the city.
Boosting food centre-Hamburg
The food cluster should fit into Hamburg's existing landscape of eight economic clusters. Cluster policy aims to create synergies, increase innovation and value creation through networking. The new cluster should help food companies manage the challenges of the market better and strengthen Hamburg as a food centre thereby creating an innovative start-up scene and ensuring networking with research in Hamburg.