The new facility in Austria, which has been operational since early 2019, adds to a growing network of Lesaffre baking centres and will be the group’s first entirely dedicated to industrial customers. The company claimed the opening would allow it to enhance its service offering and open up new opportunities within Europe.
Jérôme Lebriez, president for Oriental and Central Europe at Lesaffre, said: “In this new baking centre, suited to industrial scale pilot trials, we offer our customers and partners the possibility to carry out tests on our premises by simulating their own conditions and constraints, and without disrupting their productions. This will allow us to develop tailor-made solutions with them.”
The facility houses an ultra-modern pilot industrial bakery, built around four zones: a dough preparation zone, a shaping zone, a cold treatment zone with a forced-air freezing cell, and a baking zone. In addition, there is a laboratory area dedicated to evaluating the quality of finished products, including their shelf-life, preservation, and texture. In all, the centre is more than 600 square metres in size and boasts cutting-edge technology that will allow Lesaffre to better engage with its clients.
Lesaffre CEO Antoine Baule said: “Innovation is part of the company’s genes and will be one of the keys to meeting the many challenges of tomorrow. We want to help our customers by codeveloping with them technical and industrial solutions that meet their own innovation needs. Setting up this Baking CenterTM in the heart of a region that plays such an important role in the evolution of food trends is essential for Lesaffre.”
The French company said the latest investment reflects its continued commitment to its talent, technology and to finding new solutions for customers’ problems.
It has previously expanded its capabilities through acquisitions: last July it acquired bakery ingredients company Delavau Food Partners as part of its expansion in North America, and then in November bought Italian biotechnology company Gnosis – a specialist in fermentation-derived ingredients for food and nutraceuticals.