The European Investment Bank (EIB) has said it offered the €75m ($82.19m) loan in a bid to bolster Chr. Hansen’s efforts to revolutionise the food industry by developing food products – like meat cultures – with reduced sugar, salt and fat, as well as extended shelf-life.
Chr. Hensen has built a name for itself by developing natural solutions for the food, nutritional, pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. They also supply food cultures – essentially live bacteria, yeasts or mould used in food production – probiotics and enzymes used in range of foodstuffs, including animal feed.
Speaking to Chr. Hansen’s senior director of investor relations, Anders Mohr Christensen, told GlobalMeatNews that the company was obviously “very pleased” with the €75m fund from the EIB.
“The loan with EIB is, however, just one of several funding opportunities Chr. Hansen uses and the loan will not change or expand our research and development program in excess of what has already been planned,” he said.
“Our research and development program covers innovation of new bacterial solutions for food, especially dairy and meat, dietary supplements, animal health, plant protection and the human microbiome, and natural colour solutions for the food & beverage industry.”
80 new jobs
In a statement published on Monday 14 December by the EIB in Luxembourg, Jan Vapaavuori, EIB’s vice-president for Danish operations, said: “Supporting research, development and innovation with an important health impact is a key priority for the European Investment Bank, so we are glad to be supporting Chr. Hansen’s development of high-value added food products.”
Chr. Hansen’s research will be carried out at its state-of-the-art research and development facility in the Danish city of Horsholm, and in Saint-Germain-lès-Arpajon, France. Research projects are expected to last until 2018 and Chr. Hansen says around 80 new research and development jobs are expected to be created.
It also said it will provide further information on the specificity of individual research projects, including those on meat cultures, in due course.