Novonesis brings ingredient experts together to offer enhanced solutions

Editor’s note: Welcome to Ingredient Innovation, CMN’s new segment exploring recent innovations and trends in the dairy ingredients sector. For this segment, we will profile a leader in the ingredients industry as well as share updates on mergers and acquisitions and new offerings for cheese and dairy in ingredients — where flavor begins.

Photo courtesy of Novonesis

WORLD-CLASS BIOSCIENCE — Novonesis offers cheesemakers a world-class library of cultures, enzymes and biosolutions including the DVS (direct vat set) and EASY-SET cultures pictured above. The company’s starter cultures are split into eight cheese segments, covering many different cheese types.

Photo courtesy of Novonesis
ENHANCED SOLUTIONS — “We’re bringing solutions to the market that cheesemakers can use to make products with higher quality or enhanced productivity for their operations,” says Julien Biolley, director of business development and marketing for Novonesis.

By Alyssa Mitchell

COPENHAGEN, Denmark — Two long-established, Danish-based ingredient companies have come together to establish Novonesis, a world-leading biosolutions partner for cheese, dairy and other industries.

Late last year, Novozymes, a provider of enzyme and microbial technologies, and Chr. Hansen, a global, differentiated bioscience company, entered into an agreement to create a global biosolutions partnership through a statutory merger of the two companies. The merger was finalized earlier this year with the combined name of Novonesis, derived from the Greek word “genesis” and meaning “a new beginning.” Company officials note the name reflects a new era of biosolutions where innovation in biological sciences and technology will offer solutions to solve some of the biggest challenges facing humanity.

“Novonesis reflects where we came from, what we can achieve and what we will become together,” says Ester Baiget, president and CEO of Novonesis. “We are dedicated to harness the transformative potential of biology. Building on our legacy of developing innovative biosolutions, we stand ready to unlock unprecedented opportunities. In Novonesis, we will unite the brightest minds and the best science and technology in the field to help customers and businesses prosper while enabling (them) to solve some of the greatest challenges we all face.”

Julien Biolley, director of business development and marketing for Novonesis, says the decision to merge Chr. Hansen and Novozymes made sense as the two businesses had very similar cultures and goals.
“If you look at our companies’ strategies, we both were focused on bringing sustainable solutions to the world,” Biolley says. “We are both focused on technologies like fermentation and biosolutions, and we saw an opportunity to become the largest biosolutions company in the world.”

He adds that Novozymes’ track record of innovation aligned well with Chr. Hansen’s expansive library of strains and microbes.

“We thought that bringing these entities together could unlock a lot of potential,” he says. “We’re merging our portfolio of solutions, and it really is one plus one equals three.”

Biolley also notes the expanded global footprint that the merger brings to the ingredients sector. The combined company encompasses a global network of more than 23 manufacturing sites and close to 40 research and development (R&D) and application centers that employ close to 10,000 people. Half of the company’s portfolio will focus on enabling healthier lives and producing better foods, while the other half will address reducing chemical use and targeting climate-neutral practices.

Novonesis is committed to carbon neutrality by 2050, a 75% reduction in scope 1 and 2 emissions from its own operations by 2030 and a 35% reduction in scope 3 emissions from its full supply chain by 2030.

The company is leading with the message, “The time for biosolutions is now.” Across the world, changing lifestyles are impacting health. Unhealthy diets and high stress levels are key risk factors, and Novonesis seeks to help consumers balance modern lifestyles and healthier lives.

“We can navigate to better lifelong health with biosolutions. They enable delicious food and drink with less sugar and more fiber. They also have the potential to keep us calm in the face of stress, boost our immune systems, make our guts healthier, our breath fresher and our teeth and gums stronger. They could even help us enjoy a better night’s sleep,” officials say.

Further, Novonesis says biosolutions can help transform businesses in three ways:

• Biosolutions increase efficiency — Biosolutions help customers optimize production so they get more from their raw materials, save on energy, and reduce water consumption and reliance on chemicals.

• Biosolutions improve sustainability — Biosolutions are inherently better for people and the planet, allowing businesses to lead by example and get ahead of increasing legislative changes.

• Biosolutions elevate product offerings — Biosolutions help customers develop higher-quality products, with new benefits and claims and a higher chance of market success.

• Ingredient solutions

Novonesis provides a plethora of ingredient solutions for food manufacturers through the wealth of expertise, innovation and product offerings available through legacy companies Chr. Hansen and Novozymes.

One example is enzymes, proteins that are used in many applications to make specific changes to substances using enzymatic catalysis. They improve a wide range of consumer products and industrial processes.

Another offering is functional proteins, ingredients that bring benefits to food like improved taste, texture and nutritional value.

“We’re seeing different technology trends in the cheese industry such as higher solids and proteins in milk and new equipment types, with increased automation,” Biolley says. “We’re bringing solutions to the market that cheesemakers can use to make products with higher quality or enhanced productivity for their operations.”

He adds cheesemakers have increased focus on higher-value aspects of products like improved machinability, meltability or stretchability. Cheese conversion also is a focus — bringing the right functionality to cheese for the ability to slice, dice, shred and prepare it for various applications — as well as enhanced flavor.

“One of our strongest assets is we’re a global partner to the cheesemakers of the world. There’s not a type of cheese where we don’t have an expert somewhere that can help. We will find that expert within Novonesis to make the cheese the way the customer wants,” Biolley says

He notes Novonesis also has the largest range of coagulants and cultures in the world for cheesemaking and can support any customer making any type of cheese.

“Yogurt and cheese are great examples of food cultures at work — they wouldn’t exist without cultures,” Biolley says. “Cultures can make food safer by protecting it and even extending shelf life.”

Moving forward, Biolley notes that legacy products from Chr. Hansen and Novozymes will remain under those brand names, but new products will be branded under the new name of Novonesis.

“We’re not focusing as much on one specific brand but understanding the needs for each of the markets and customizing the application of our solutions to each customer’s needs,” he says. “Each dairy producer has different goals and strategies.

“We’re also focused on having more people on the ground,” he adds. “Even as we are scaling up, the dairy and cheese industries remain a high priority. We expect to deepen our relationships and partnerships with cheesemakers around the world.”

Biolley notes that as supply chain challenges have plagued the industry over the past couple of years, Novonesis is excited to bring joint solutions to help the industry achieve maximum value throughout the dairy manufacturing process from milk to cheese to whey.

“We’ll bring an even stronger supply chain to the industry, and R&D also will be massive combining these two companies,” he says.

Meanwhile, Novonesis also will focus on planetary health, Biolley notes.

“Novonesis is highly committed to the sustainability agenda and impact to the planet,” he says. “We have a big impact not just on people but on the world. What can biosolutions do to better the world? We are here to make it happen.”

Novonesis is excited to launch the new combined company at the upcoming CheeseExpo, set for April 16-18 in Milwaukee. The company plans to launch a new product for cheese flavor development and enhancement at the show, Biolley notes.

“We’ll have representatives from both legacy companies at the show, but the plan is to have everyone come together to really show who Novonesis is,” he says. “We’re very dedicated to innovation, and this merger opens up a lot of opportunities for cheesemakers. We invite the industry to come see us and discover how we can support their strategies.”


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