SRC-Catalyst for national development
LAUNCHED AS the principal public-sector agency of Jamaica with responsibility for the promotion and coordination of scientific research and the application of its results through the transfer of technologies in support of national development, the Scientific Research Council (SRC) came into being on June 1960 through the passing of an act of Parliament under the leadership of Norman W. Manley (former premier and national hero of Jamaica).
In accordance with its mandate, the projects and activities of the SRC are designed to support the growth and development of the local agro-industrial sector through research, adaptation of available technologies, creation of new and appropriate technologies, the provision of training, technical assistance and consultancy services geared at the development and establishment of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises.
Projects undertaken by the SRC have resulted in increased productivity and yield, export opportunities, employment creation and income generation, cost reduction, increased quality standards, food safety and the establishment/development of industries. The SRC satisfies the processing needs over 60 MSMEs annually.
Through quality control programmes and stringent monitoring, the SRC continues to offer firstclass service to Jamaica. As part of its continued effort towards improving customer relationship through effective communication, improved efficiency and consistency in procedures, the SRC obtained the prestigious ISO 9001:2015 certification and is also the proud owner of its own registered certification mark — a symbol of excellence denoting safety and quality.
The council’s unwavering commitment to entrepreneurial activity through the support of the local agroprocessing industry is witnessed through its accomplishments over its 50 plus years.
1984 — Development of Solar Crop Dryer, designed to dry spices, nuts, fruits and vegetables to obtain higher earnings. SRC encouraged small farmers and exporters to use solar drying technology to preserve pineapple, papaya, mangoes, peanuts, peas,
IStudents are all smiles as they receive the first place award for their performance from SRC’s executive director, Dr Cliff Riley, at the SRC Open House Day 2015.
ginger, pepper and banana.
Extended shelf-life of tropical fruits and vegetables and diminished loss incurred during storage. Led to the development of value added foods
1984 — Introduced New Variety of Sugar - Worked with SIRI towards introducing a new variety of sugar cane, called energy cane, that would yield a higher increase in sucrose content and greater volume of molasses and fibre.
1984 — SRC adapted Biogas/Anaerobic Technology to promote the use of alternate sources of energy and to supplement total energy demand, utilise waste and provide organic fertiliser. These systems produce biogas, organic fertiliser and treated wastewater that can be used for irrigation or returned to water bodies without causing harm.
1996 — Development of Biodigester Septic Tanks (BST) to replace soak away pits. To date, SRC has commissioned over 500 BST’s to treat farm, agro-processing, industrial, commercial and residential waste islandwide.
III2002 — Development of Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket (UASB) Reactor that utilises biogas/anaerobic technology to efficiently treat complex industrial, agro-processing and municipal waste.
Establishment of a local sorrel industry - that now boasts a new variety of sorrel, known as the ‘Bashment Sorrel’. The industry now has over 15 products such as jams, preserves, sauces, tea and juices on the market.
Through Tissue Culture Technology, has provided disease-free planting material to the farming community in flexible economic quantities; preserving endangered species and conserving plants of economic importance.
Production of Irish potato micro tubers using Temporal Immersion System (TIS) enabling supply of local market and reduction in importation needs.
Molecular characterisation of our local ginger variety.
Research to Impact Health & Wellness - SRC supporting local nutraceutical industry by executing research; training of
IIIIIIentrepreneurs; and developing value added food and personal care products.
The Natural Products Unit administered dibenzyl trisulphide (extract from Guinea Hen Weed) orally in old mice and discovered that it caused significant increase in thymic weight. The thymus is an immune organ that regulates the development of disease in the human body as it ages. This work has implications for treatment of diseases associated with ageing. Guinea Hen Weed is also known for its anticancer properties.
Executed tests on 100 local plants used in traditional medicine and was able to isolate anti-oxidant activity specific to treatment of various ailments.
SRC devised a method of determining antiinflammatory activity of natural and synthetic compounds. This serves as a means of preventing animals from being used in experiments. SRC’s worth is not unnoticed by the corporate world as is evidence through various patents
IIIand awards received over the years.
2006 — Biodigester Septic Tank (BST).
2014 — SRC received two patents for Air Water Lift System (AWL) and Impoundment Tanks to support commercial production of feed for ornamental fish and marine shrimp.
Shares patent with UWI for development of natural pesticide from local plant
1999 - Winner international food award - Canadian Fancy Food Show for the best new food item - Sorrel Chutney
2004 - the Council received the Gleaner Company’s Honour Award for Excellence in Science & Technology
2008 - Received international quality certification ISO 9001: 2000 (Now ISO 9001:2015 certified)
2010 - SRC’s Analytical Lab was the first to be accredited - ISO 17025 certification
2010 - SRC was nominated by the Jamaica Exporters Association (JEA) for Providing Outstanding Consultancy Services.
SRC, proud recipient of the prestigious, international Green Apple Environmental Award
IIIIIIAVAILABLE TECHNOLOGIES and SERVICES - Packaged Just For You! Food Technology Development and optimisation of new products and processes
evaluation - helps to ensure market acceptance of product
Access to Food Pilot Plant with certified food technologists (for persons without access to factory).
Packaged food formulations — raw material selection, processing; process flow; packaging; good manufacturing practices; equipment needs.
Consultancy services — factory layout and equipment guide; use of appropriate packaging; shelf life studies; nutritional labelling.
Analytical Services — food, water and wastewater
Training courses in food processing; essential oils and development of personal care products; tissue culture; treatment and maintenance of wastewater treatment systems.
Information on renewable energy; science, technology and innovation
School science education services — Enhance teaching of science in schools.