New centre for advanced ingredients
- 29 October 2009
- Press contact
Arla’s ingredients experts are now located in a new world leading application centre. Food producers from across the world can be supplied from here with customised, added value ingredients for their own productions.
Following the opening of its new application centre adjacent to Arla’s future head office in Aarhus, Arla Foods Ingredients’ protein business is in a much stronger position to deliver unique ingredients to world markets. Replacing the existing development facilities at e.g. Brabrand and Nr. Vium, the centre will employ 30 technologists working within functional proteins from milk and whey extracted during Arla’s cheese production.
If, for instance, an Argentinean yoghurt needs to be creamier, if an American ice-cream needs a softer consistency or if the fat content of a cheese in the Middle East needs to be reduced without its flavour being compromised, the producer will often approach Arla Foods Ingredients for a solution based on whey or milk proteins.
”Siting our creative expertise under one roof is a huge advantage because knowledge, skill and state-of-the-art equipment is accessible to everyone,” says Executive Group Director Jais Valeur, Arla Foods Ingredients. ”It opens up a range of new opportunities for developing concepts for even more markets.”
Built at a cost of DKK 20 million, the application centre covers 2,000 sq.m and is an ultra modern research and development facility of a quality that would make any scientist green with envy. Besides the lab's 30 full-time technologists, the application centre draws on a further 40 sales people who develop and sell ingredients solutions across the world.
A glance at the customer list reveals the extent to which milk and whey proteins are used as ingredients in a surprising number of contexts. Besides the dairy industry, the nutrition, bakery and meat industry are increasingly making use of functional milk proteins.
”Our people have found that functional proteins from milk or whey can replace casein in salami, egg white in muffins and make fruit drinks useable in diets and weight control," explains Jais Valeur. "Regardless of the food product, producers often decide to use our milk proteins because they know that they are getting a super, functional ingredient that in many cases is more natural and cheaper than other alternatives."
“The new centre also allows food producers with special requirements to send a couple of people in to use the equipment and work alongside Arla Foods Ingredients' recognised experts in order to develop the desired solution. This will attract unique know-how and expertise from across the world and, therefore, strengthen our relations with customers," Jais Valeur adds.
He emphasises that, despite the financial crisis, Arla Foods Ingredients is maintaining its strategic target of doubling sales of functional milk proteins before 2013. In 2008, turnover for this part of the business was slightly below DKK 2 billion.
”With the new centre in Aarhus we have established the optimum conditions for doubling turnover by 2013,” he says.
FACTS – Arla Foods Ingredients (AFI)
Did you know that …
- more than two million tonnes yoghurt is produced using functional milk proteins from AFI every year. (This corresponds to five to six per cent of the world’s yoghurt production).
- meat products such as salami are easier to slice, cheaper to produce and have a more pronounced taste by replacing caseinate with functional milk proteins.
- a muffin is cheaper to produce as well as softer and more moist and can keep longer when the producer uses milk proteins instead of eggs.
- AFI has developed ingredients solutions for e.g. white cheese, block cheese, cream cheese, processed cheese and pizza toppings based on fat, water and functional milk proteins. These are used by producers within as well as outside Europe.
- milk proteins from AFI can be used in a large variety of food, including yoghurt, cheese, ice-cream, salami, paté, ham, sausages, muffins, biscuits, sponge bases, protein bars, etc.