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Nestlé to expand York R&D centre

By Graham Holter , 16-May-2011

Nestlé has revealed to FoodManufacture.co.uk that it is planning a significant extension to its confectionery and biscuit product technology centre (PTC) in York.

The unit is Nestlé’s global research and development centre for these products, reporting to the multinational’s international headquarters in Switzerland.

A company spokesman said that the firm expects to create dozens of new jobs at the expanded site, which already employs around 200 engineers, technologists, confectioners, technicians and nutritionists.

He said that Nestlé is now in the process of submitting a planning application to the local council, and is aiming to get the new facility onstream by autumn 2012. The plans include new laboratories and offices, as well as pilot production areas and conference facilities.

Leading R&D role

The spokesman said that the York facility is responsible for creating all new and reformulated Nestlé confectionery products, and also plays a leading role in developing equipment and technology.

He cited one recent example of new wafer ovens to manufacture KitKats, and added:“The PTC extension is just one part of Nestlé’s continued investment into the York site and a further demonstration of the importance of the city to the company.”

The York PTC opened in 1991 and is one of a network of sites operated by Nestlé around the world, each with its own specialism.

The site is Nestlé’s centre of excellence for chocolate, sugar confectionery and biscuits, focusing on lighter eating, luxury premium gifting and “popularly positioned products”.

Nestlé defines the latter as lower-priced versions of premium brands aimed at lower-income consumers in developing countries.