According to the French yeast manufacturer, the facility in Vienna will open new opportunities for customers within Europe, through thorough testing of technical products and machinery on industrial scale pilot trials.
Lesaffre CEO Antoine Baule, CEO of Lesaffre, said innovation is part of the company’s genes.
“We want to help our customers by co-developing with them technical and industrial solutions that meet their own innovation needs. Setting up this Baking Center in the heart of a region that plays such an important role in the evolution of food trends is essential for Lesaffre, he said.
Evolution of food trends
The 600m2 facility houses a 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.
It is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery that makes it possible to produce a wide range of products – such as hamburger buns, donuts, Kaiser rolls, sheet dough, co-extruded bakery products and so forth – in an industrial environment.
There is also a laboratory dedicated to evaluating the quality of finished products, including shelf life, preservation and texture, as well as meeting rooms with a capacity of up to 30 people.
The purpose of the center is to enable the company to work with customers on new products, without disrupting their production lines.
“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,” added Jérôme Lebriez, president for Oriental and Central Europe at Lesaffre.
Lesaffre has aggressively expanded its global capabilities through a series of acquisitions – 17 in the past five years – most recently, US bakery ingredients company Delavau Food Partners in July 2018 and Italian biotechnology company Gnosis – a specialist in fermentation-derived ingredients for food and nutraceuticals – in November.
The company employs 10,500 people based at almost 80 subsidiaries in more than 50 countries, achieving a turnover of more than €2bn ($2.25bn).