Carlow and Tipperary chosen to pilot innovation, design and sustainability programme

Opportunities available through CATALYST programme will be unveiled at master class event at Carlow IT

Darren Hassett


Darren Hassett


Carlow Carlow Carlow

CATALYST is a new 3-year (2018-2020) cross-border project to support the Food & Drink & Life Science sectors across Ireland and Wales

Companies or individuals involved in the food, drink and life science sectors in Carlow and Tipperary have a unique opportunity to grow their business through an exciting new pilot programme targeting small and medium-sized enterprises.

Opportunities available through the landmark CATALYST programme will be unveiled at a master class event at the Institute of Technology, Carlow, on Monday, October 1. 

It’s open to businesses in the relevant sectors, based in both counties and runs from 9.30am to 2pm.

It features expert input from Siobhán Ni Gharbhith of St Tolas, John Teeling from Cooley Distillery and Ann Marie McSorely of Veri. The event is MC’d by Conal O’ Moráin.

The pilot programme supports food and drink producers, food retailers and the food service industry - including logistics and distribution - as well as life science sector businesses, including pharmaceuticals, biomedical, cosmeceuticals and more.

Registration is free and intending participants are invited to book their place now on catalyst-innovation- sustainability-master-class- tickets-50346685291?aff= ehomecard

Through CATALYST, a carefully-selected core group of successful applicants will receive expert guidance, mentoring and support as they grow.

They’ll also have hands-on help to develop new, in-demand products as well as guidance on how best to bring products to market in the most resource-efficient way.

The new initiative also offers successful applicants an opportunity to network across industry sectors and with SMEs in Wales, i.e. companies employing up to 250 people.

Expert partners in the exciting new programme are based in both Ireland and Wales and include Carlow County Council and Tipperary County Council as well as the Institute of Technology Carlow’s Designcore.

The lead partner is University of Wales Trinity Saint David and the fifth and final partner is Wrap Cymru, leaders in sustainable waste policy. 

CATALYST is a new, 3-year (2018-2020), cross-border project which is funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Ireland Wales Cooperation Programme, 2014-2020.

It will deliver tailored supports to meet the needs of the individual participants, according to Carlow County Council Chief Executive, Kathleen Holohan. 

"CATALYST has already established a network of leading business mentors in key areas such as Product Development, Communications and Resource Efficiency and the hands-on team is keen to help in key challenge areas such as sustainable development and design thinking; research and development (R&D); supporting the creation of new and sustainable products and processes and more," she said. 

The programme is unique in that it combines practical, one to one learning with specialised, theme-based network training events, with options for demand-led, short term, cross-border residencies. It involves business owners, industry experts and academics devising innovative solutions to business challenges, according to Tipperary County Council Head of Enterprise, Rita Guinan.

“We encourage qualifying businesses to get in touch and come along on October 1 to see how it can benefit them. The entire programme will be delivered by leading business mentors with vast experience in the areas of communications, product development, resource efficiencies and design thinking,” she said.

Institute of Technology Carlow’s Designcore expertise will be invaluable.

President, Dr, Patricia Mulcahy, said: “CATALYST is a unique programme for SMEs who want to explore business challenges and elaborate innovative, highly marketable solutions.

"CATALYST also offers the opportunity to expand business networks, exchange knowledge, and develop new insights from industry and academia."

·         Interested companies or individuals should contact CATALYST’s Gabrielle Carroll on

·         Booking is open now on catalyst-innovation- sustainability-master-class- tickets-50346685291?aff= ehomecard