Play of the game

The US National Dairy Council is encouraging university students to develop innovative dairy-based products for gamers. Having a devoted gamer in the house myself, we are in good company. Around 94% of young people play video games in some capacity, 60% of gamers say video games help them be social and 90% of gamers aged 21-35 regularly eat food and drink while gaming. A combined $16,000 in cash prizes will be awarded.

It’s not a bad idea. Get the kids while they’re gaming, and you’ll have a lifetime customer who associates your product with the happy times they had shouting and giggling on their consoles with other children. I often throw dairy products at the child while he is involved in whatever pursuit is going on, on the tv. Handier ones would be welcome. Things like yogurts and some cheeses can get sticky when in play.

Meanwhile, companies such as Nestlé continue to invest in research and development accelerator programmes, to find the next big thing, whether it is in dairy, or non-dairy, products. The dairy giant has opened up a new site in Lausanne, Switzerland recently.

These schemes are very popular. Food Works Ireland is a cooperation between three government agencies in the country to find more new products using Irish ingredients, and is now looking for ten new participants for the next tranche. Over 100 companies that have already completed the programme since it began in 2012. “The programme aims to support and assist rising stars to achieve their ambitions in domestic and international markets, all the time working toward enhancing the global positioning of Ireland’s food and drink sector,” says Tara McCarthy, CEO of Bord Bia, one of the agencies involved.

Indeed, I see cooperation increasing between these programmes worldwide, especially as most of the big accelerators like the ability to scale up to export. It’s enough to get a dairy person all pog. But then again, as my son reminds me, that’s cringe when your mother says things like that. Totally mank.

(Pog – play of the game, cool, used to convey enthusiasm or excitement. Cringe – when someone acts so embarrassing or awkward, it makes you feel embarrassed/awkward. Mank – horrible.)



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