As the demand for natural colors continues to grow globally, Chr Hansen Natural Colors shows a clear ambition to remain a leading supplier of natural color solutions. The expanded and completely renovated R&D facilities in Montpellier, France, will undoubtedly strengthen its possibilities to develop innovative and natural solutions in close collaboration with customers. All is now set in place for a bright future for Chr Hansen Natural Colors, which is expected to be acquired – subject to regulatory clearance – next year by EQT, a global investment organization.
“We are ramping up our R&D capabilities in pigment, formulation and application expertise. Also, we are accelerating our breeding programs and new technologies to secure sustainable and high-quality natural sources,” states Luc Ganivet, vice president, head of innovation and application. “More stable formulations and even new colors like blue and green will now be within our reach. This new center will be a magnet to the brightest talents in the industry and will help us to remain a leading force. Montpellier lies in the heart of an exciting food science hub, with several universities and institutions renowned for their profound scientific expertise,” adds Ganivet.
Relentless drive for innovation and developing differentiated technical solutions
Chr Hansen Natural Colors will be even better equipped to use its world-class technical expertise and relentless drive for innovation to meet conversion and cost optimization challenges. Also, the ambition to bring several new and unique products to customers remains stronger than ever. Over the past five years, five to ten new products have seen the light of day annually and a steady stream of customization projects for which Chr Hansen Natural Colors is renowned in the industry.
Groundbreaking innovations, such as the minimally processed red Hansen sweet potato that won the European FI Innovation Award for Natural & Clean Label and the American IFT Innovation Award last year, will continue to evolve from the expertise center in Montpellier.
A strong legacy of pioneering the global natural colors industry
“With the R&D center we are cementing our leading position and will be even better equipped to develop differentiated technical solutions that meet the challenges of our customers,” states Klaus Bjerrum, executive vice president. “A key objective for us is to secure knowledge sharing and alignment across our global organization so that we can offer customers the same high level of expertise wherever they are located.”
The skills and competencies gathered at the new center will allow Chr Hansen Natural Colors to balance short and long-term innovation needs as the company anchors numerous teams in Montpellier with expertise in raw materials, extraction, and pigments, breeding, formulation, and biotechnologies.
“We are proud to be the partner of choice for so many food and beverage manufacturers. We highly value their trust and we will continue to earn the right to be their chosen partner. When travel policies allow again, we are excited to welcome customers and academic partners and jointly accelerate colorful, natural innovations for modern health conscious consumers,” Bjerrum concludes.