The global producer of specialist food ingredients and components said the facility would handle freeze-dried fruit and vegetables, including whole fruits and vegetables and sliced, diced and powdered formats.
The products would be packaged into wide variety of carton size configurations, it added. In addition the facility would produce retail and foodservice packs for its customers, which included blue-chip food firms such as Nestlé, Kellogg, Starbucks, General Mills, Weetabix and PepsiCo, said Chaucer.
Popularity for freeze-dried foods
The company claimed the construction of the plant had been a response to growing popularity for freeze-dried foods, driven by demand for improved food quality and natural clean ingredient declarations.
It stressed that freeze-dried ingredients were 100% natural, with no added flavours, colours or preservatives. They also retained about 98% of the nutrients, including vitamins and minerals, found in the fresh material, Chaucer said.
It also revealed that it planned to expand the facility in the mid-term in order to take further advantage of the growing market place.
The opening of the new plant follows Chaucer’s purchase of a 65% controlling stake in US freeze-dried healthy snack specialist Crunchies Food Company in October 2014.
The group, which has its global headquarters at Brighton Street Industrial Estate in Hull, is active across three key sales areas, Europe, Middle East and Africa, the Americas and Asia Pacific.
It sells products such as freeze-dried fruit, vegetables, cheese and yogurt and bread products, including croutons and sprinkles, in 30 countries. Its other two factories are in France and China.
“We are delighted to announce the opening of our new US facility, a milestone achievement for the company, which underpins our positioning as one of the global leaders on the freeze-dry stage,” said Chaucer ceo Andy Ducker.