Belfast firm the first to commercialise nanomaterial

MOF Technologies has agreed a deal to use material in a food application

A Belfast-based firm spun out of Queen’s University four years ago, has become the world’s first company to successfully commercialise a class of nanomaterials known as metal-organic frameworks (MOFs).

MOFs are crystalline, sponge-like materials composed of two components – metal ions and organic molecules known as linkers. They are highly porous materials that can store, separate and capture specific gases and be used in a whole range of pioneering applications from natural gas storage in vehicles to drug delivery devices.


MOFs are widely considered to be among the most exciting, high-profile developments in nanotechnology to emerge over the past decade.

Now the Northern Irish company, MOF Technologies, which has developed a novel technique for the synthesis of metal-organic frameworks, has agreed a deal with fruit and vegetable storage provider Decco Worldwide to commercialise MOFs for use in a food application.


TruPick is a new storage provision facility designed by Decco and using MOF Technologies’ environmentally friendly technology – enabling nanomaterials to control the effects of ethylene on fruit produce so as to maintain freshness in storage or transport.


Dr Paschal McCloskey, chief executive of MOF Technologies, made the deal announcement at the 5th International Conference on Metal-Organic Frameworks & Open Framework Compounds (MOF 2016) in Los Angeles last week.

“It’s a real achievement to be the world’s first in this growing new branch of chemistry,” said Dr McCloskey.

“Metal-Organic Framework technology has the potential to be a real game changer in a number of key industries, including chemical processing and manufacturing,” he added.

MOF Technologies raised €1.2 million in a funding round last September to expand its UK manufacturing base and scale up production of its technology.

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist