Takasago to step up savory flavor development

By Chris Jones

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Flavor Taste

Takasago USA has big plans for developing its savory flavors
business following a major new investment at its plant in
Rockleigh, New Jersey.

The flavor and fragrance group, a division of Japan's Takasago International Corporation, has just completed a significant multi-million dollar extension of the Rockleigh facility, with several new pilot plants, flavor laboratories and an application center for food service customers.

Maria Carluzzo of the company's marketing department told FoodNavigator-USA.com that the food service application center - with a preparation area that duplicates what is normally found in high end restaurants - reflected a new commitment to building a savory flavors business.

"We have always had a small but secure savory flavors arm, with a number of repeat customers, but most of our growth in the last few years has been in beverage and confection."

"But a lot of beverage companies also have other business lines, such as snacks, or are part of bigger groups, and we want to work with them as well to help develop new products."

She said the company was already working on new flavors for use in soups and sauces, and would continue to develop this side of its business.

Carluzzo said that beverage and confectionery flavors would continue to dominate, however, as the firm is now one of the core suppliers for a number of major US food producers.

"We might see a little reduction in the share of our beverage and confectionery business as we focus more on the oral care market ," she said.

Beverages and confectionery account for around 70 per cent of the company's business.

New beverage and confectionery applications laboratories at the Rockleigh facility were completed last year, and will allow the company's sensory testing group, which helps identify the latest taste trends in these two markets, to grow its business.

The New Jersey site also hosts Takasago's consumer insight and marketing research team that collaborates with food companies worldwide to help develop these flavour trends into mass-market products.

"We work mainly with US companies at the moment, but many of them are part of global groups, and we want to see what international opportunities are out there," said Carluzzo.

"For example, we're looking to work more closely with our associates in other parts of the world to offer companies flavors for every market they are in."

She said that while national and regional legislation meant that ingredients could not always be made in the same way .

"We could sell, for example, a flavor for a tea beverage that is sold in the US, Europe and Japan that would taste the same no matter how it was made".

The Rockleigh plant was completed in three phases.

First came the initial installation of the beverage and confectionery flavor production lines, followed by a reworking of the sensory area.

This was "to allow access from outside to panel testers, who weren't able to enter before because the labs were in the middle of the building" , said Carluzzo.

The final stage was the completion of the beverage and confectionery flavor lines and the creation of the food service lab.

The company last week unveiled plans for a new citrus center in Florida, the USA's largest citrus-producing state, in a bid to increase product quality and innovation.

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