Glanbia Nutritionals is investing €1.4m ($1.57m) into its R&D facility in Kilkenny, Ireland, which is expected to open its doors for operation in Q3 of 2022.
The company says the additional technology and equipment at the facility will support the creation of ingredients for bars, snacks, beverages, baked goods and other categories in the European food and drink industry.
The upgraded site aims to encourage more face-to-face customer interactions and meetings, supporting a faster development process and delivering more efficient prototyping. Increased customer collaboration will be supported by an investment in equipment including bar and beverage processing technology.
According to a study by the company, 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, indicating rapid growth for the healthy snack market.
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.
Loren Ward, Chief Research and Development Officer at Glanbia Nutritionals, said: “The new research facility will provide a collaborative environment with our customers and accelerate prototype development. It will help deliver a competitive advantage to our customers in launching new products, aligned with market trends and consumer demand.”