September 29, 2021
Technion food research center gets an upgrade
Yoel Carasso, Chairman of Carasso Motors (Left) and Technion President Prof. Uri Sivan (photo credit: RAMI SHLUSH / TECHNION)

The Technion will partner with the Carasso family to renovate the FoodTech building and make it more advanced.

The Technion will be partnering with the Carasso Family and Carasso Motors in revamping the Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Engineering. The building that is currently known as the Food Industries Center will be renovated and turned into the Carasso FoodTech Innovation Center and will be dedicated to promoting cutting-edge food technologies, teaching, research and development (R&D).

The renovations will expand and upgrade the building, making it unique to Israel, and one of the most advanced of its kind in the world. It will include an R&D center for industrial production, a packaging laboratory, an industrial kitchen, and tasting and evaluation units. There will also be a visitors area for high-school students to be exposed to the world of FoodTech and startups.

“Eradicating world hunger and improving food security are among the main challenges facing humanity in the 21st century, as defined by the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals,” said Technion President Prof. Uri Sivan. “The Technion has the only faculty in Israel for research in food engineering, a faculty that leads the Israeli FoodTech industry.

“We are grateful to the Crasso Family for their generous contribution, which will establish the Carasso FoodTech Innovation Center, and will help us promote groundbreaking scientific research in the field, train the next generation of the Israeli FoodTech industry and maintain the faculty’s position at the global forefront of research and development.

“In 1924, our grandfather Moshe immigrated with his family to Israel from Thessaloniki, where he was one of the leaders of the Jewish community,” said Yoel Carasso, chairman of Carasso Motors. In Israel, he cofounded Discount Bank, Ophir Cinema and of course, Carasso Motors. For me and for my uncle Shlomo and my cousins – Ioni, Orli, Tzipa and Arik – this is coming full circle from a century ago.

Yoel Carasso, Chairman of Carasso Motors (Left) and Prof. Marcelle Machluf, Dean of the Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Engineering (credit: RAMI SHLUSH / TECHNION)

“We chose to support the Carasso FoodTech Innovation center since the Technion is synonymous with excellence. The Technion is an engine for combining basic and applied science in the Galilee and in Israel as a whole. We believe the Carasso FoodTech Innovation Center will contribute to the industry and to collaborative work in this field, and thus strengthen the Israeli economy and society. Our family has a history of supporting the Technion, and when the opportunity to establish this center sprang, we knew it was our calling to lead.

“The faculty is one of the only ones in the world that combines the disciplines of bioengineering, technology, food sciences and life sciences,” said Prof. Marcelle Machluf, the faculty’s dean. “Coping with the COVID-19 pandemic has only emphasized the importance of food and biotechnology in maintaining our existence and meeting future existential challenges. To address the many challenges in this field, including access to healthy, affordable food and innovative medical treatments, we need advanced infrastructure that will enable the integration of new engineering and scientific tools; these will enable us to develop the necessary technologies, as well as the infrastructure and equipment that will support the development and assimilation of knowledge required to tackle tomorrow’s food challenges.”

“Carasso Motors, with its various brands – Renault, Nissan, Infinity and Dacia – is committed to innovation and connection with our diverse customer base in Israel,” said Isaac Weitz, CEO of Carasso Motors. “Food technology is an evolving field that brings value in many ways to our stockholders. Food research tackled environmental and global warming challenges, providing food security and a balanced diet, accelerating paramedical developments that combine medicine and food, and of course, contributing to the development of innovative solutions that will put Israel at the forefront of science globally.

“At Carasso Motors, we jumped at the opportunity to make such a significant contribution to the establishment of this advanced research center, which will also improve and advance Israel’s education and society.”