Glanbia Nutritionals makes €1.4 million investment into Irish research and development site
Global ingredients and solutions group Glanbia Nutritionals has placed a €1.4 million investment into enhancing its Research and Development facility in Kilkenny, Ireland, reports Neill Barston.
The key project is expected to be completed in the autumn of 2022, supporting the creation of a range of products including confectionery bars, snacks, baked goods, as well as beverages.
As the company noted, its latest move comes in the wake of a strong financial year, with the company reporting an EBITA pre-exceptional of €69.7 million at HY 2021, up 17.1% constant currency on the prior HY (up 6.6% reported).
Glanbia Nutritionals, which has over 2,900 employees across the world, says new technology and equipment at the facility will support the ideation and creation of ingredient solutions for bars, snacks, beverages, baked goods and more for the European food and drink industry.
The upgraded site aims to encourage more face-to-face customer interactions and meetings, supporting a rapid development process and delivering efficient prototyping, ultimately offering a swift route to market for brands creating new products. Increased customer collaboration will be supported by an investment in new equipment including bar and beverage processing technology.
According to a study by Glanbia Nutritionals, 33% of UK consumers who snack admit to eating more when working from home. Low calorie and high protein claims in snacks are especially high priorities for millennials and Gen Z, demonstrating that the market for healthy snacks is experiencing rapid growth and increased consumer demand.
Glanbia Nutritionals’ CEO Brian Phelan commented: “This new, enhanced R&D facility will allow our teams to better deliver innovative solutions to our EMEA-based food and beverage, lifestyle and nutrition brand customers as a key part of our market strategy in the region. It is another fundamental element of our global investment strategy in research & development facilities, as we bring our unique solutions capability to our regional and global customers.
“The nutritional sector is increasingly competitive, so we wanted to ensure that we continue to offer first-class equipment to match the top quality expertise, consumer insights and operational knowledge that our customers have come to expect from Glanbia Nutritionals.”
Loren Ward, Chief Research and Development Officer at Glanbia Nutritionals, added that the new research facility will provide a collaborative environment with its customers and accelerate prototype development, helping deliver a competitive edge.