The Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute’s (AFBI) facility in Crossnacreevy carries out testing for the Department of Agriculture and other bodies. The closure comes as part of DARD’s review of the AFBI’s operations, which will also see it withdraw funding for renewable energy and biomass research.
“I am deeply disappointed this decision has been taken by the Department,” said Mr McCarthy.
“Staff at the plant carried out excellent work. Not only are their jobs directly affected, but there is the wider issue of the impact upon Northern Ireland’s agricultural sector.
“Alliance made representations to the Department during its consultation on this issue and I was hoping the facility would remain open, but sadly DARD has decided against that and will instead deliver a major blow to both the local constituency and also the industry as a whole.”