The investment will be made over a period of three years at the bakery plant in Montierchaume in central France. The announcement comes alongside a separate investment of €14m into a new bread production line at a Harry's plant in Plaine de l'Ain, just outside of Lyon.
A spokesperson for Barilla told this publication that the move demonstrates the firm’s commitment to growing business outside its home country, Italy, which currently represents about half of the company’s sales.
“France is Barilla’s second largest market after Italy and we are committed to growing there,” said the company.
Harry’s bread brand
Barilla acquired the French pre-packaged bread and breakfast brand Harry's back in 2003. Barilla already had a 49% stake in the bread group and took the remaining 51% from Artal Luxembourg that summer.
There has been a lot of talk in recent years of the bread sector's struggle to maintain volume in the face of bad health press and the resulting encroachment from new foods on eating occasions like breakfast traditionally dominated by bakery products.
Yet Barilla said that it does not consider the bread market to be “shrinking” and claims that the segment remains “dynamic”.
“Our €30m investment proves our confidence on the development of this market and Harry's capabilities to face those challenges,” the company spokesperson said.
Harry’s product portfolio includes traditional sliced bread lines, burger buns, brioche and products like Doowap which contain chocolate chips and are targeted towards children. The baker’s 'Beau & Bon' range includes cereal and nut loaves.