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Bühler unveils cutting-edge food innovation hub in Switzerland

The hub integrates the entire value chain, fostering a circular economy approach and providing a collaborative space for customers worldwide

Bühler Food Innovation Hub

Swiss technology group Bühler has inaugurated its state-of-the-art food innovation hub in Uzwil, Switzerland, marking a significant milestone in its commitment to advancing food production technologies. The hub integrates four Application & Training Centers (ATCs) - Flavor Creation Center, Food Creation Center, Protein Application Center, and Energy Recovery Center - providing a collaborative space for product and process development.

Johannes Wick, CEO of Grains & Food at Bühler Group, emphasized the hub's significance in addressing fast-changing consumer demands. "In this world where requirements are changing so fast, customers need flexibility and creativity to adapt their products addressing key issues such as sustainability, the use of local raw materials, healthy diets, and affordability," Wick stated.

The new ATCs connect the entire value chain, fostering a circular economy approach to food production. The hub offers a unique environment for Bühler's customers to navigate market changes and design the food of the future with cutting-edge infrastructure and a team of experts.

Bühler already operates ATCs in 23 locations worldwide, offering dedicated training and providing a collaborative platform for testing new product ideas. The new hub in Uzwil complements the existing centers and serves as a one-stop shop for customers globally.

The Protein Application Center, a highlight of the new hub, focuses on plant-based food production, including meat substitutes, plant-based drinks, and ingredients. Equipped with advanced techniques for protein isolation and fractionation, the center operates in collaboration with Bühler's partner, endeco, connecting various ATCs within the hub.

The Flavor Creation Center combines Bühler's expertise in processing cocoa beans, nuts, and coffee, offering innovation, training, process optimization, and raw material analyses. The upgraded center aims to create unparalleled flavors and exquisite products.

The Food Creation Center, spanning 850 square meters, supports customers through the entire innovation and industrialization process for a wide range of products, from snack bars to chocolate. It integrates cutting-edge technology, analytical services, and workshops.

In an effort towards sustainability, Bühler has also established the Energy Recovery Center, which uses waste and by-products generated by the ATCs to serve as a heating facility for Bühler's headquarters. This center also functions as a demonstration and testing platform for customers looking to reduce their carbon footprint, waste production, and energy costs.

Johannes Wick highlighted the transformative impact of the new hub, emphasizing that the integrated ATCs work together to offer a comprehensive process, ensuring customers achieve tangible and remarkable outcomes.

Bühler's commitment to innovation extends beyond Switzerland, with partnerships like the Tropical Food Innovation Lab in Brazil and plans for new centers in Uzwil and Nigeria. The Grain Innovation Center in Uzwil is set to start operations by the end of 2024, focusing on sustainable solutions for grain and feed processing, while the Grain Processing Innovation Center in Kano, Nigeria, will open its doors in early 2024, concentrating on the development of products and processes using local grains.

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