CSM Ingredients eyes growth under Investindustrial ownership: ‘The future of food will be shaped by bold innovators’

By Katy Askew

- Last updated on GMT

Bakery supplier CSM Ingredients looks to future growth / Pic: GettyImages-etiennevoss
Bakery supplier CSM Ingredients looks to future growth / Pic: GettyImages-etiennevoss

Related tags Bakery

Following its acquisition by Investindustrial, CSM Bakery Solutions has rebranded as CSM Ingredients. FoodNavigator speaks to the group’s CEO Aldo Uva about the opportunities the new ownership structure will unlock.

Investindustrial has acquired CSM Ingredients in a deal that, the company said, will see it benefit from the European investment group’s ‘strong experience and business partnerships’.

CSM Ingredients supplies the bakery fats, pastry and bread ingredients markets as well as food solutions for multiple industrial applications in bakery, dairy, non- dairy and the ice cream industry. The team serves artisanal and industrial bakers, global foodservice operators and retail chains in more than 100 countries.

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed. However, incoming CEO Aldo Uva told FoodNavigator: “CSM Ingredients generates annual revenues of approximately €500 million with eight manufacturing facilities, including one in China and one joint venture in Tunisia. The main markets in Europe are Germany, Italy, France, the UK and Benelux, with a growing presence in China and Asia.”

The acquisition, he continued, is expected to support future growth at CSM.

“We are delighted that we are at the very beginning of an exciting journey as CSM Ingredients is now under the ownership of Investindustrial, which already has strong expertise in the industry with ItalCandity and Natra as part of their portfolio. Going forward CSM Ingredients will benefit from its already established strong experience and business partnerships with distributors, customers, suppliers with a renewed focus on ingredients, food innovation and sustainability.”

Innovation and sustainability focus

CSM Ingredients benefits from a focus on innovation and ‘excellence’ in product development as well as a global manufacturing presence.

With innovation and sustainability core priorities moving forward, Uva revealed that the company will ‘absolutely’ be increasing investment in these areas.

“The future of food will be shaped by bold innovators, purpose driven companies and inspired teams. We are delighted that we already have all this in our CSM ecosystem and are looking forward to leveraging it even more.

“Our expertise in food innovation to drive differentiation, our inspired teams, our commitment to a sustainable future and our dedication to successful and reliable partnerships will provide the foundation to springboard the company commitment to create value and achieve further successes.”

‘The world has changed beyond recognition’

On innovation trends, Uva said that CSM Ingredients will have to ‘look beyond’ its existing business and work to ‘truly understand’ the needs that drive customers and consumers in both the core bakery and ‘other markets’.

“The world has changed beyond recognition in the past 12 months, and we are working across all our teams to look at how that will impact the sector and the trends that will play a major role in the sector in the next five to 10 years for both our customers and consumer needs,”​ he revealed.

So, what trends does he expect will shape the future of food?

“In all European markets we see society and consumers increased focus on healthier options including plant-based, sugar free food options and also healthy raw material substitutes. We see a rising demand for new and uncommon taste experiences and a focus on sustainable ingredients. The trend towards more premium food solutions on one hand and the rise of convenience driven products on the other continue to drive in all markets.”

CSM Ingredients is focused on developing a strong vegan offering and work is already underway to build on its ‘wide range’ of plant-based products. The company expects plant-based to move rapidly into the mainstream, rather than remaining a specialized niche, and intends to leverage its product development capabilities to capitalize on this trend.

Work to be a responsible and sustainable partner to food makers is also continuing apace, Uva noted.

“We are committed to being a responsible and sustainable company. We are acting responsibly in our own environment, our communities, our business and with our customers. As such we are integrating responsible business practices into the heart of our organisation based on five pillars of sustainability which are environment, people, products, communities and governance. Sustainability is a major part of our strategic considerations on an ongoing basis.”

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