CPI, a tech innovation centre and founding member of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, has revealed plans to establish a Novel Food, Feed and Nutraceuticals Innovation Centre of Excellence.
The plant is catalysed by £4 million in funding from the Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority Cabinet.
By becoming the go-to place for process development and scale-up of novel foods, feeds and nutraceuticals, this will help to drive both CPI and the Tees Valley as leaders in biomanufacturing and food innovation.
The investment from the Tees Valley Combined Authority builds on recent investments from CPI to create food grade precision fermentation and pilot plant capabilities at the Wilton Centre in Redcar.
Increasing global demands for food, along with growing health, environmental and animal welfare concerns are driving emerging trends in the food, feed and nutraceutical markets.
However, in order to keep up with ever-changing consumer demands and drive innovation across the product supply chain, specialised facilities, technical expertise and advanced capabilities are needed.
To continue responding to this market need, CPI will extend its current capabilities at the National Industrial Biotechnology Facility in Wilton, Redcar with this funding, upgrading its laboratories and technical development areas and establishing new food-grade capabilities.
This cutting-edge Centre of Excellence will enable CPI to support businesses in developing new and improved food products, ultimately creating new products and biomanufacturing jobs in the region.
The facility update will enable CPI to provide exemplar services, samples and collaboration to recognised Food Safety and Quality Standards (FSSC 22000).
The new Centre of Excellence will leverage at least an additional £20-30 million from industry over the next five years by attracting new businesses to the Tees Valley; initially to work with CPI in the new facilities, but hopefully in time to establish themselves in the region.
Through CPI’s unique set of capabilities in the North East, the Centre of Excellence will be able to integrate a variety of technologies from ingredient production through to formulation and packaging solutions to deliver the sustainable food supply chain demanded by consumers in the 21st Century.
Within the innovation supply chain CPI will provide connectivity, linking partners and collaborators from its global network.
Frank Millar, CEO at CPI, said: “With this investment from the Tees Valley Combined Authority, in conjunction with CPI’s investment programme and the commitment of industry partners, the Novel Food, Feed and Nutraceuticals Innovation Centre of Excellence places the Tees Valley at the heart of a more sustainable food industry.”
Kris Wadrop, General Manager for Biotechnology at CPI, said: “This unique capability in Teesside will draw companies from all of the UK, EU and even the world to Wilton.
“Ultimately, this new centre will enable businesses to demonstrate technologies and develop products that could transform our food, feed and nutraceuticals.”