Take a look behind the scenes of Bühler’s CUBIC innovation campus

By Jenny Eagle contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Food safety, Proteins

Consumer eating habits will change in the coming decades and we will have to find new sources to provide humankind with sustenance in the future, according to Bühler.

It says it is taking on a large piece of the responsibility in this development by investing in and researching technologies for processing alternative foods such as alternatively sourced proteins including algae proteins or insects for animal and aqua feed. 

Spring opening

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Ian Roberts

As part of Bühler’s goal is to provide everyone with access to healthier and safer nutrition it has invested CHF 50 million in its CUBIC innovation campus in Uzwil, Switzerland and after nearly three years in development the doors will finally open this spring. 

In an exclusive interview with Ian Roberts, CTO, Bühler, he takes FoodNavigator on a behind the scenes tour of the building as it nears completion.  

We wanted to build a centre where we can drive collaboration and a cultural change, to create new businesses with our partners, be it academia, start ups, customers, suppliers along the value chain, that will create new businesses that bring impact to the sustainability issues we face in the food value chain and in sustainable mobility​,” he said. 

The CUBIC combines research and development with seven renewed application centers, which will be available to customers for conducting tests and trial series together with Bühler.  

The project started in Q3 2017, and will open its doors in May with an official launch at Bühler’s Networking Days in August for all customers.

The program is aimed at best-in-class innovation, research, training & education as well as production and logistics. 

Technology labs

Roberts added with the decision to build an innovation campus, including a collaborative center and upgrading technology labs, Bühler is embarking upon a new chapter of its company history giving strong commitment to Switzerland as a high tech center and innovation driver. 

We are very focused on prototyping, on faster innovation and improving the efficiency of bringing relevant products to market, brining transparency to the food value chain and digitilization​,” he added.  

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We want to attract the best post doctoral researchers to Switzerland and our aim is to bring in 70 plus post doctoral researchers to CUBIC​.”

Bühler’s goal is to cut energy use, water consumption, and waste by 30% by 2020 and the company invests 4%–5% of its turnover in research and development each year as it looks to find new ways to meet its ambitious sustainability targets. 

Examples include: Buildings such as CUBIC that use smart glass facades with electrochromic glazing produced on Bühler Leybold Optics machinery, require up to 50% less energy for heating and cooling. 

In 2018, Bühler began building the world’s first ultra-low-emission coffee processing plant for its customer, Joh. Johannson Kaffe. The Norwegian coffee company’s plant will produce record-low greenhouse gas emissions and 35% of Bühler’s R&D projects focus on improving energy efficiency per ton of end product or finished piece. 

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