Novozymes Expands Operations in India

21 Nov 2016 --- Biotechnology company Novozymes is expanding its operations in India with plans for a new enzyme production and supply chain facility expected to open in 2018.

The Denmark-headquartered company is looking to accommodate business growth, production hikes and supply chain needs. With an initial investment of DKK 300 million (US$42.7 million) the facility near Mumbai will produce enzymes using solid state fermentation and will also formulate enzymes imported from Novozymes’ production sites outside India. 

At present, the key business areas for Novozymes in India are the household care, textiles, food & beverages, oil & fats, baking, and beverage alcohol markets. Solid state fermentation is a key process when manufacturing enzymes. Microorganisms are seeded on trays filled with a substrate, such as wheat bran. The trays are left in a temperature-controlled room for several days. As the microorganisms ferment, they produce the enzymes.

“We see a big opportunity in India and Southeast Asia, where knowledge-based innovations in the field of industrial enzymes can effectively replace polluting chemical processes and deliver environmental sustainability,” says Thomas Videbæk, executive vice president & COO, research, innovation & supply at Novozymes. “Our business in the region has been growing strongly for years, to a point where we have outgrown current facilities and need to expand for the future. We have chosen the new area for its size, proximity to customers, future business opportunities and good accessibility to ports, airports, highways and other industrial infrastructure.”

The new plant also builds on Novozymes presence in the country where it has been operating since 1983, currently with three sites in Bangalore. The company says the solid state fermentation and supply chain operations for the region will now move to the new production site near Mumbai, while all other functions will remain in Bangalore, including Novozymes’ Indian head office, research & development center and the service centers which provide support to global operations.

In India, Novozymes makes pectinase enzymes which are used in the wine and juice industries to squeeze more juice from the fruit and improve production processes. It also formulates other enzyme types in India to cater to local market needs. Formulation is the process whereby enzymes are made into a final product tailored to the specific requirements of the customer. For example, some customers need a granulated enzyme product while others prefer a liquid. 

“We will maintain some of our key functions in Bangalore, which has proven to be a great base for pushing sustainable, biological solutions to India and beyond,” adds Videbæk. “From now on, we will have two main sites in the country, and as we discover more Asian opportunities for our solutions, we look forward to developing both our presence in Bangalore and Mumbai.”