University of Leicester research project shortlisted for major regional award
Issued by the University of Leicester Press Office on 16 November 2011
A project from the University of Leicester's Space Research Centre has been shortlisted for the 'Most Innovative Research Project' prize in the Food and Drink iNet Innovation Awards.
Researchers used space technology to develop a way of detecting counterfeit whisky through the bottle. The research could help save the whisky industry millions of pounds every year.
Food and Drink iNet Director Richard Worrall said of the project: "Being able to test a liquid such as whisky for authenticity without opening the bottle would bring major benefits to the drinks industry, as well as having opportunities in other fields, such as airport and airline security."
The team from the University of Leicester is working with The Scotch Whisky Research Institute, Leicestershire County Council Trading Standards Office and De Montfort University to create a handheld device that can detect fake whisky and other beverages through the bottle.
The technology was initially developed for astronomical research, and was adapted for use in detecting counterfeit medicines in collaboration with university spin-out firm Perpetuity Research and Consultancy International Limited.
Part of the funding for the project was provided by the Food and Drink iNet, an organisation that co-ordinates innovation support for businesses, universities and individuals working in the food and drink sector in the East Midlands. Food and Drink iNet organises the annual Innovation Awards to recognise and reward the most exciting developments in the region’s food and drink sector.
Director Richard Worrall said: "This is the fourth year we have held the Food and Drink iNet Innovation Awards and once again we had an exciting batch of entries, which demonstrates that innovation in the sector is thriving in the East Midlands. I am very pleased to see such an interesting range of projects in the shortlist, as it illustrates the different forms that innovation can take."
The Food and Drink iNet is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund.