Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) has officially opened its cutting-edge flavor and ingredient creation, application, development and customer innovation centre on the 24th January at the Biopolis research hub in Singapore.
The opening of the 8,900 sq.ft innovation centre will serve as a gateway to customers in Southeast Asia and beyond, and enable ADM to work closely with customers to create complete flavor and specialty ingredient solutions that meet consumer preferences in terms of taste, nutrition, function and texture. It will also house qualified and experienced staffs comprising of food scientists, flavorists and application experts, along with sales and marketing personnel.
Donald Chen, ADM's President, Asia said, "Consumer tastes and preferences are changing as people look to balance busy lifestyles with healthier eating habits. Our goal is to be the first-call ingredient and flavor experts for customers working to meet those consumer needs throughout Southeast Asia." He further added that Singapore is a critical hub of innovation and growth in the food and beverage world, and ADM is excited to leverage its technology, expertise and global scale to help Southeast Asian food and beverage companies to remain at the forefront.
ADM has chosen Singapore as the location for its innovation centre, demonstrating the country's value as a hub for agri-commodity companies to co-innovate with their downstream customers in Asia.
Vince Macciocchi, President of ADM's WILD Flavors and Specialty Ingredients business said, "This new facility is yet another important step as we continue to enhance our portfolio and our capabilities around the globe." He added, "Consumers are looking for new, innovative food and beverages, and ADM continues to invest to ensure that we are the go-to-solution providers for clean labels, sustainable ingredients and great taste."
An interview with Vince revealed further insights into ADM's plan for the region. Vince said, "ADM's most important segment now is beverages, which has the biggest piece of our current business. But we see great growth in food services opportunities for food and beverages in this region. We will see our food business grow as a result of this and that is also one of the reasons why we put our facility here." Vince added, "When we mentioned food, we are referring to meat in meals, confectionery, bakery and a wide range of food products. As for beverages, our focus include dairy, juices as well as fortified beverages that include yogurt amongst others."
Presently, ADM clients cover across a broad spectrum in the Asia Pacific region. The innovation centre in Singapore will focus on the Southeast Asian region that include Singapore, Philippines and Vietnam amongst others. ADM also has similar facility to cover Australia and New Zealand region.
Vince noted that the future trends for food and beverages in this region is towards health and well-being. He mentioned, "Clean label, clear label, natural, organic as well as health & wellness like prebiotics and probiotics. We see that growing in our portfolio. We also see ageing population and the trend is to create great tasting fortified food products for the ageing palate. Another area of ADM consideration is Soy, which is a focus in this region obviously and to create great tasting 'soy-based' products."
Vince also mentioned 'food vending' which is a growing area in food service, and consumers are demanding better tasting products at the point of purchase.
The new innovation centre features a wide range of capabilities which include a food and flavor analytic lab; a beverage and dairy applicators lab and pilot plant; a bakery and confectionery lab; a meat and savory lab; a sweet and savory creation lab; sensory evaluation facilities; and a customer innovation centre.
Singapore is now home to almost 100 ADM employees. In Asia Pacific, ADM boasts of more than 1,000 employees working in a wide range of processing facilities from animal feed facilities to flavor and ingredient facility, as well as in a sweetener and soluble fiber complex in China. ADM has food and flavor labs in Japan, China, Singapore and Australia, and sales offices throughout the region. ADM also has a 24.9% stake in Singapore-based Wilmar Limited, which is a leading agribusiness and packaged food oils company in the region.