Joerg Niebelschuetz, director, finance and operations, Delacon, told FeedNavigator the company is planning to open the new hub in spring 2020.
The facilities will be located in Engerwitzdorf, in Upper Austria, about 20 km north form the current headquarters, and will comprise around 13,529 square meters, he said.
The hub will comprise Delacon’s entire production facility and offices for up to 100 people from various departments including R&D, laboratory, quality management, supply chain, IT, regulatory affairs, finance & controlling, HR, and marketing.
Delacon, which recorded turnover in fiscal year 2018 (April 2017-March 2018) of €30m, said it is aiming to fivefold its’ production capacity up to 20,000 tons per year.
Growth rates in annual turnover of 20% require new technologies and capacities, stressed the company.
The new plant will have fully automated production to allow it achieve the production capacity with the same number of employees.
When asked how Delacon will ensure sustainable production at the new plant, Niebelschuetz said that there would be a photovoltaic system – solar power system - on the roof, which will deliver 100,000 kWh to cover a part of the production needs. The company, he said, is also looking to bring in a raft of other technologies to ensure resource efficiency at the new facility.
In July 2017, the Austrian company and US agribusiness group, Cargill, announced a strategic partnership focusing on phytogenic products. The deal also included a minority equity investment from Cargill.
When asked how significant that tie-up with Cargill is in terms of driving growth at Delacon, CEO Markus Dedl told us:
“Our partnership with Cargill opens up new distribution opportunities in important markets worldwide such as Russia or Latin America, where we did not have a strong market presence so far.”
Phytogenic feed additives, commonly defined as plant-based feed additives or botanicals, represent a group of natural substances used in animal nutrition. These substances are derived from herbs, spices, other plants and their extracts, like essential oils.
Due to their holistic and broad-spectrum efficacy, Delacon said phytogenics are moving further into the spotlight among scientists, nutritionists, feed manufactures, producers and farmers.
The Austrian producer said, based on the dosage sold, about 16 million tons of compound feed were produced using Delacon products and expertise in 2017.