A spokeswoman for the firm refused to reveal any more information on the investment but told FoodManufacture.co.uk plans were in place to improve the “world class” facility in Flintshire.
The new contract would help Calbee UK hit its target of £65M in sales by 2020, as well as growing staff at the site from 32 to 100, she added.
Calbee UK’s Yushoi Snapea rice sticks were launched in Tesco stores nationwide on November 22.
The snack, which is made predominantly using green peas and rice, will provide consumers with a healthier alternative to fried crisps, as retailers look to increase space in store for snacking options that are better for you, the firm claimed.
‘Real step forward’
The Tesco listing marked a “real step forward” for the UK arm of the £1.2bn Japanese business, its sales controller Louise Monk said.
“We know that Tesco wants to help customers to make healthier choices, building on the removal of sweets, chocolates and fizzy sugary drinks from the tills and in-queue areas,” she said.
Calbee in numbers
- £1.2bn business
- 3,300 employees across 12 countries
- 1949 established to tackle post-war malnutrition in Hiroshima
“Replacing these items with products that are better for you in supermarkets and convenience stores makes it easier for consumers to choose options that are better for them.”
Calbee developed a healthier snack that did not compromise on taste or texture, Monk claimed.
All four flavours of the snack contain front-of-pack guideline calories, sugar, salt and fats information to help consumers make more informed decisions, she added.
“We know that consumers and retailers are aware of the obesity debate and that this has translated to changes in store layouts, with an increase in those featuring dedicated healthier snack categories,” she said.
The rice sticks are baked and contain less than 99 calories per 21g serving. They are high in fibre and a good source of protein, low in saturated fat and made with 68% green peas, the firm claimed.
They are suitable for vegetarians and vegans, people on nut- and dairy-free diets and have no artificial colours, additives or flavour enhancer monosodium glutamate.
Yushoi Snapea is also stocked in Morrisons, The Co-Operative, Whole Foods Market, WH Smith and Selfridges.