Quorn said the new centre was part of its ongoing investment into innovation and its technological capability.
Situated at its headquarters in Stokesley, North Yorkshire, the global innovation centre would enhance the manufacturer’s capability in both core protein fermentation and ability to develop new products.
Continue job creation
Having already created more than 100 jobs last year, Quorn expected the new development would allow the company to continue job creation, particularly in roles requiring employees with science, technology, engineering and mathematics backgrounds.
The investment comes off the back of Quorn’s half-year results for the first six months of this year, which saw like-for-like sales grow 12% – compared with the same period in 2017.
Commenting on the results and the investment, chief executive Kevin Brennan said: “With our renewed investment in R&D we expect to lead the way for decades to come. We hope to demonstrate that there are great British businesses in the north that can win on a global stage.
‘Amazing growth internationally’
“We are already seeing amazing growth internationally: Australian sales are up 50% and US sales are up 23%. In the US supermarket giant Kroger, we now have the fastest-selling product in the category. With continued investment we believe we can continue this level of performance.”
According to Quorn, the global meat-free category is growing rapidly between 10% and 20%, with the UK up 15%. This has been fuelled by growing concern from consumers about the health and environmental issues associated with excessive meat consumption.
Meanwhile, earlier this month, Quorn Foods signed a deal with Johnston Logistics UK, to receive, store and distribute ingredients and packaging for the manufacturer.
Quorn’s sales growth by market
- UK: +15%
- Australia: +50%
- US: +23%