DR: “Murcia-based Premium Ingredients has identified cheese replacement products and dairy ingredients as strategic growth areas. Why precisely?”
AA: “Because Premium Ingredients has been cumulating a long and fruitful experience along the years in this relatively new application.
“While most dairy proteins and hydrocolloids or blends producers have focussed mainly on other dairy fields, for the last 10 years we have focused on the processed cheese industry and have incorporated technicians with different expertises in this application.
“Moreover, our strategic geographic expansion aims at emerging markets, which demand a strong technical support for the development and production start up of a wide variety of low cost cheese-based new products.
“This continued effort has led us to reach a clear leadership in the proposal of solutions for new products development and cost reductions in this field of the dairy industry.”
DR: “What interesting new directions in dairy ingredients is Premium Ingredients seeing?”
AA: “The economic crisis from 2007 led many cheese processors or industrial cheese consumers to think about cost reductions based on cheese replacement. Therefore there is a search for solutions making possible the production of appealing products at a reduced cost.
“There is also a growing trend to increase the consumption of dairy products in emerging markets. This means that a number of cheese producers want to industrialise the production of their traditional products at an affordable cost.”
DR: “What kind of challenges and opportunities arise as a result of working in a dairy segment that has now become so international, in regard to addressing different customer needs and demands?”
AA: “The basic experience obtained while trying to find new textures or tastes to satisfy the needs in a distant country, is valid to solve problems appearing in a totally different region. On top of this, the demand for cheaper products is today universal.”
DR: “Could you tell our readers a little about yourself? What is your career history prior to your current position, where do you live and how do you relax outside of work?”
AA: “I started working in the food ingredients industry 25 years ago, initially in commercial management and then in business development until I became the General Manager of Degussa Texturant Systems, today part of Cargill.
“After years of living in France and Germany I moved back to my home town, Barcelona, due to family reasons. And a little more than two years ago I was contacted by this small jewel named Premium Ingredients that I didn't hesitate to join immediately!
“Today I'm living in Barcelona where it is very easy to relax practicing my favourite sports: skiing, golf and mountain biking.”