The new 20,000 square meter site, set up by its Genencor subsidiary, will allow the group to utilize new fermentation technologies to meet demands for its enzyme products in the grain and food processing sector. The company's decision to enhance its production capabilities comes amongst increased demand from the Asian food industry for enzymes. With Danisco keen to increase its share in the global market for enzymes, the company's chief executive officer stressed the growing significance of China to its expansion aims. "China is an important engine to propel the growth of the industrial enzyme market," stated Tjerk de Ruiter. "By establishing this new facility, we plan to reinforce our commitment to continually invest resources to support our customers in this region." The plant is equipped with a waste water treatment plant as well as warehouse and lab facilities. The company also said that the plant was designed specifically to meet the challenges the Asian market was likely to throw up. This has seen Genencor obtain certification for ISO 9001, Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), and Kosher and Halal production. However, the company is not alone in its attempts to tap Asia's potential for enzyme production and demand. Market leader Novozymes revealed earlier this year that Asia had driven strong sales in its enzyme operations during 2006, with earnings rising by 11 per cent and sales increasing 8 per cent. Sales of food enzymes rose by just below eight per cent in both DKK and local currencies in 2006 compared with 2005, primarily due to high growth rates in sales of enzymes to the baking industry. Demand in enzymes for alcoholic beverages also grew healthily, mainly due to increased use in Asia. According to a report by the Business Communications Company, Novozymes currently dominates the enzyme market with about a 50 to 60 per cent share. Though Novozymes and Genencor lead production, the potential of the market in Asia has also encouraged moves by smaller players like Associated British Foods (ABF). Last year, Stephen Catling, head of ABF Ingredients, told AP-Foodtechnology.com that China is already one of the top four markets for the group, with fast growing demand for ingredients like enzymes and proteins. "Asia has been our fastest growing market for enzymes for the last three years, and particularly China," he said.