The latest step in the Food Innovation New Zealand partnership formed four years ago was launched at Massey University on Monday night.
Food HQ is not yet a headquarters in the strict physical sense but it signals the plan to invest $250 million over 20 years to develop the country's first food-orientated campus in Palmerston North.
Six partners are involved in the project: two research institutes, Fonterra, the Riddet Institute at Massey and the Bio Commerce Centre supported by two local councils.
Food HQ's project manager, Mark Ward, says it will bring them closer together in collaborative research.
"We're taking advantage of the natural cluster of 2000 workers here, innovation workers, taking advantage of that, and we're going to make sure that all our investment in the next 12 to 20 years is done in a way that's collaborative and in the interests of New Zealand."
He says Food HQ will be a one-stop-shop for high value food innovation.
Mr Ward says the latest example of food innovation flowing from that type of collaboration was launched last night - a zero fat ice cream.