Omega Ingredients’ investment creates 16 new jobs

By Nicholas Robinson contact

- Last updated on GMT

Omega Ingredients has recently secured a supply of Spanish orange oil
Omega Ingredients has recently secured a supply of Spanish orange oil

Related tags: Flavor

Omega Ingredients (OI) has doubled the size of its manufacturing facility and secured 16 new jobs by pumping £300,000 into its UK operations, ceo and founder Steve Pearce has said.

The company, which specialises in creating and supplying natural flavours and ingredients for the global food and beverage industry, increased the size of its Ipswich factory by 264m² last year.

The expansion was supported by a £30,000 local enterprise grant and £120,000 of capital investment.

Modern processing machinery was installed at the factory as part of the investment, allowing OI to manufacture new products and create eight new jobs.

This year the £2M turnover firm, which was founded by Pearce and his wife Elizabeth in 2001, aims to create up to eight more jobs when OI’s new £150,000 Creative Innovation suite is opened later this month (September).

‘Confidential’

“Building the Creative Innovation suite means we can work with our customers in a controlled and confidential way, which we couldn’t do before,” ​Pearce told FoodManufacture.co.uk.

Customers previously worked with OI in the company’s main offices, which limited the amount of secrecy it could offer, said Pearce, who has been a biochemist for 30 years.

Investment has also allowed Pearce to grow OI’s turnover by up to 20% year-on-year and secure several exclusive partnerships with natural ingredients suppliers.

“Raw material partnerships account for around 80% of our business, because that’s how the company started out," ​he added.

“We’ve taken on new contracts with suppliers of Spanish garlic oil and Spanish orange oil​."

Pearce plans to push more investment into OI’s flavour division in the coming years, as consumers continue to looked for unique flavours in their food, he said.

More and more customers were interested in flavour and where their flavours came from, Pearce claimed.

‘Synthetic or artificial’

“When I started out in the early 1980s, pretty much everything ​[in the industry] was about synthetic or artificial.

“There was only a limited amount of natural materials available and they were extremely expensive and there wasn’t a cost effective alternative,”​ he added.

However, “synthetic”​ and “artificial”​ were taboo words now and instead consumers had migrated to natural, which was something OI’s customers wanted to take advantage of, he said.

An increase in demand for natural flavourings had led Pearce to develop a new range of fruit-flavours, which have been branded KiiNotes.

“However, I can’t disclose much about them as we will be revealing more at the Creative Innovations suite launch later this month,” ​he said.

Meanwhile, OI expanded into the US last year after launching its sister company Maverick Innovations.

The US business would focus on British flavours, such as banana and custard, he said.

For the latest information on a full range of jobs in food and drink manufacturing, visit FoodManJobs​.

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