Chr Hansen's expansion of its existing lactic acid cultures facility in Pohlheim, Germany is designed to tap the rapidly growing market for meat cultures.
The Danish firm said that global market was such that increased production capacity was vital.
"In order to reach our goals and provide our customers with innovative solutions, it is necessary to keep upgrading and adjusting our facilities on a continuous basis," said Thomas Reiner, country manager for Germany.
The expansion is part of a concerted effort by the company to capture a larger chunk of the meat cultures market. Chr Hansen also recently developed a natural cure for meats that can be used in place of added nitrite, helping food makers to develop clean-label meat products.
The Danish company claims that the new ingredient creates the necessary colour and flavour, and offers the same functionality as traditional curing methods.
And Franco Franzoni, business manager for meat & prepared food in Italy, recently told FoodNavigator that Chr Hansen was intent on increasing its 50 per cent share of the Italian meat cultures market alone.
The expansion at Polhheim is therefore seen as a key move to streamline resources in order to create a centre of excellence within the area of meat culture production.
"We predict a double-digit annual market growth for meat cultures with a focus on new and improved cultures for the dried fermented meat segment and new solutions within the area of food safety," said Eva Stenby, global marketing manager.
"It is important that we at all times comply with the increasingly demanding purity specifications. In order to achieve this goal, it's imperative that we streamline our resources."
The new facilities will comprise equipment designed to support future market growth in both meat and animal health segments. The fermentation line and the laboratories have already been upgraded.
"This ensures better utilisation capacity in fermentation, bringing the Pohlheim site up on a world-class level," said the company in a statement.
Among the latest initiatives is the expansion of the drying and packaging facilities that includes, among other things, the installation of a new freeze drier.
"Our new freeze drier plant is a state-of-the-art facility," said Helmut Scheibler, plant manager of the Pohlheim site.
"It not only serves to optimise the drying process, it also allows adjusting the process to the requirement of each strain we are producing, to the individual need."