Her Majesty Queen Máxima of the Netherlands today formally opened the FrieslandCampina Innovation Centre on the campus of Wageningen University & Research Centre in the presence of the King’s Commissioner for Gelderland, Clemens Cornielje, the Mayor of Wageningen, Geert van Rumund, and other invited guests. Her Majesty Máxima declared the new Innovation Centre open by pouring a jug of milk. The event also underpinned the importance of innovation and the issue of global food security, given that 16 October has been designated World Food Day by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation. Royal FrieslandCampina N.V. will use the new Innovation Centre to bring together its international research and development know-how.
FrieslandCampina is committed to helping resolve three major social problems: the need for sufficient nutrients for the growing world population, progressive ageing and the need to create future prospects for farmers, and demand for affordable food and sustainable production chains.
FrieslandCampina CEO Cees ’t Hart said at the opening: “FrieslandCampina now has a state-of-the-art innovation centre that will work towards bringing about innovative and sustainable solutions for all these global issues. We want to ensure that we can bring healthy nutrients to all parts of the world. And we are confident that we can get even more out of milk than we do at present. After all, each calorie of milk contains many essential nutrients such as proteins, vitamins and minerals.”
In a video message to the assembled company, former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan encouraged FrieslandCampina to use its extensive network, global presence and knowledge to benefit food security and sustainability. “Innovation after all has no geographic limits. It can and should be applied for global goals. FrieslandCampina can make a crucial contribution to alleviate global hunger,” Mr Annan said.
Trial plant and Experience Centre
The FrieslandCampina Innovation Centre, which will have a staff complement of 450, 350 of whom will work in research and development, is equipped with every facility. The building covers almost 20,000 square metres and contains laboratories, tasting rooms, a trial plant, support areas and offices. It also houses an Experience Centre with an innovation kitchen and bakery sampling unit, where visitors and FrieslandCampina employees from all over the world can sample, smell and handle products. The centre is located on the campus of Wageningen University & Research Centre, where 6,500 staff and 10,000 students carry out work to promote healthy nutrition and a healthy environment.
Development Centre in Singapore
In September, prior to inaugurating the new Innovation Centre in Wageningen, FrieslandCampina opened a Development Centre in Singapore for the development of dairy-based beverages and infant and toddler nutrition specifically targeted at consumers in Asia. The Development Centre will link the Innovation Centre in Wageningen with the Asian market.
Innovation is an important part of FrieslandCampina’s route2020 strategy. The company’s innovation and development work concentrates on the growth categories of dairy-based beverages, infant and toddler nutrition, and branded cheese. Specific focus areas include: growth & development in children, daily diets, health and wellbeing, and functionality (structure). FrieslandCampina uses its innovations to produce healthy, nutritious, responsible and delicious food that maximise the nutritional benefits of milk. The company’s policy of specifically targeted innovation makes it possible to build on the various tastes and requirements that arise.