The new 660m2 facility will comprise presentation and development kitchens, sample preparation areas, a dedicated sauce making facility, video conferencing facilities, a meat preparation room and freezer facilities. Work on the NPD centre was expected to finished by spring 2022.
Richard Wilson, Dalziel sales director, said the NPD centre would help the manufacturer of blends, cures and functional ingredients to deliver more complex customer requirements.
“Our customer range has expanded massively in the UK, Ireland and globally across all food sectors including health and nutrition,” said Wilson.
“The scale of our NPD redevelopment gives us greater capacity for trials to replicate customer products in-house. It means we can further strengthen our partnerships with customers to develop inspirational, market leading products.”
Key to the development of the new centre was an increase in demand for functional nutrition products, in particular the rise in vegan and plant based, according to Dalziel Ingredients’ NPD director Fran Hutton
“The rise in healthy nutrition products and vegan has seen our biggest percentage growth of the last 12 months, together with demand for snacks seasoning,” Hutton explained. “During the pandemic we started exploring other markets and now we're reaping the benefits.
“Importantly, the diversity in our skills sets us apart in terms of our experience and industry knowledge.”
Work at the Gateshead factory was part of a wider £4m expansion by Dalziel, which included a £350k investment in its factory production capability to improve its range and enhance allergen controls.
This followed a major expansion of its warehousing facility at its Felling centre over the last three years. Dalziel plans for another £500,000 expansion of its raw material warehouse over next 18 months.
Managing director Stuart Dalziel added: “The importance of this investment in Dalziel Ingredients is hugely important. And we’re proud to be investing in the best environment to enable our first-class 25-strong NPD & Technical teams to shine.”
Meanwhile, Ardagh Metal Packaging has announced plans to build a $200m drinks can plant near Belfast in Northern Ireland, creating many full-time jobs for engineers, technicians and other roles.