The 102m2 centre brings together a team of breading specialists who can help bakers in the development of new products, on breading processes and train them on the specialised equipment.
“Our customers appreciate being able to challenge their breading process on state-of-the-art equipment and with the help of experts,” said Romain Petit, director of Lessafre Ivoire, at the inauguration of the centre, attended by Giles Huberson, French Ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire, and Aby Raoul, Mayor of Marcory, one of the urban communes within Abidjan.
“It is a collaborative work, between peers and our entire team to bring out new ideas. For some customers, it is an opportunity to learn or relearn to master the ingredients to diversify their offer or improve the quality of their products.”
Tailored to the region
Lesaffre Ivoire is well aware of the specifics of West Africa, and provides solutions to use yeasts, sourdoughs or bread-enhancers in local recipes such as Ghanaian bread, traditional baguette, country bread, or compound bread (wheat-manioc).
Africa is a key market for Lesaffre and it opened its subsidiary in 2004 to distribute its products to a diverse clientele of artisan bakers, industrialists, distributors, wholesalers, hoteliers and restaurateurs in the Ivorian territory. Lesaffre Ivoire is also the commercial and technical support base for much of West and Central Africa.
“We have always wanted to be as close as we can to our customers, and Africa is an important market for Lesaffre,” said David Jousselme, director of the Overseas region of Lesaffre.
“Bread is not consumed in the same way in France, Côte d'Ivoire or Algeria.
“Local experts can meet local requirements and share their knowledge with research and development with us. This allows them to co-develop products that meet these requirements.
“It is a virtuous circle that begins in the Baking Centre where professionals speak the same language.”
Lesaffre was founded as a family company in France in 1853 and has grown into a multi-local and multicultural specialist employing 10,500 people across its 66 production sites in nearly 50 countries.
The group – which realises a turnover of more than €2bn – operates 47 Baking Centres on five continents.