Ghent University and Milcobel launch Chair on Dairy Research

Dairy cooperative Milcobel and Ghent University are launching a "Chair on Dairy Research". Over the next 4 years, the main focus of the chair will be the fundamental research on the characteristics of milk proteins, with the aim of gaining new or improved insights that ultimately lead to the development of new dairy products.

Milcobel is joining hands with researchers from the Faculty of Bioscience Engineering at Ghent University, where the first initiatives for high-quality dairy research were established a few decades ago and which remains active in dairy research to this day.

From mozzarella to more

"We have every interest in developing a very strong knowledge center in Flanders," said Dirk Ryckaert, chairman of Milcobel. “It is important to boost the fundamental research on dairy products. The basic scientific concepts and insights that are developed within the chair can in time lead to more applied research within Milcobel, and lead to valorisation for our company, our customers and our partners. This collaboration is a logical follow-up to an earlier research project with Ghent University on mozzarella, which resulted in highly relevant insights. We are now happy to expand that to other domains, such as milk proteins, milk powders, etc. We see Ghent University as a valuable knowledge partner in the long term.”

Milk: more complex than you think

"We drink milk on a daily basis, but don't pay much attention to its complexity," says Chak Ming To, chair coordinator at Ghent University. "Small variations in the behavior of milk proteins can result in a product with different properties."

Win win

The collaboration with Milcobel offers Ghent University researchers an excellent opportunity to translate the results at academic level to new or improved applications in the dairy industry.

Prof. Paul Van der Meeren (Ghent University): “The mission of universities is threefold: we offer high-quality education, we do groundbreaking research, and we want our knowledge to be translated into practical applications that benefit everyone. The chair brings our education and research into contact with industry. A win-win situation for both parties."

Media contact

Prof. Paul Van der Meeren

Faculty of Bio-science Engineering, Ghent University
Promotor Milcobel Chair on Dairy Research

+32 9 264 60 03 

[email protected]


Foto, van links naar rechts: ​ Prof. Paul Van der Meeren (UGent), Dirk Van Gaver (Milcobel Innovation & Technology Director) en prof. Koen Dewettinck (UGent)

Kathleen De Smedt

Kathleen De Smedt

Corporate Affairs & Communication Manager, Milcobel

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About Milcobel

Milcobel is one of the largest dairy cooperatives in Belgium, representing about 35% of Belgian dairy farmers. In 2021, Milcobel processed 1.4 billion liters of milk from 2000 member dairy farmers. In 7 production sites in Belgium and France, it produces high quality dairy products, such as cheese, butter, cream, milk powder, ice cream and whey. 

Next to its own successful consumer brands (Brugge Cheese, Nazareth, Brigand, INCOLAC...), Milcobel produces private label consumer products for the retail sector as well as premium ingredients for professional customers in the food industry.


Fabriekstraat 141 9120 Kallo Belgium

+32 (0)3 730 18 00

[email protected]