Pepperidge Farm Opens New Innovation Center

Will drive further growth in global baking, snacking

Published in CSP Daily News

NORWALK, Conn. -- Campbell Soup Co. and Pepperidge Farm Inc. executives were joined on Wednesday by Connecticut State officials, Norwalk Mayor Richard Moccia and other partners to celebrate the opening of its new 34,000-square-foot innovation center located at Pepperidge Farm headquarters in Norwalk.

Campbell invested more than $30 million in the project, reflecting its strategy to drive continued growth and innovation in its global baking and snacking portfolio, the company's second-largest reporting segment. Key components of the segment are Pepperidge Farm in the United States and Arnott's Biscuits in Australia.

In fiscal 2012, sales increased 2% in the segment to $2.193 billion.

"Campbell is committed to driving sustainable, profitable net sales growth through consumer-focused innovation," said Denise Morrison, president and CEO of Campbell Soup Co. "Our investment in the new Pepperidge Farm innovation center will help accelerate the rate of new product development across our baking and snacking portfolio. This new building is a visible recognition of Pepperidge Farm's long history of successful innovation, as well as our commitment to delivering the next generation of new products for consumers."

The innovation center features a contemporary design with a curved glass exterior and houses a state-of-the-art pilot plant with product development and testing lines; culinary kitchens, including a "broadcast-type" culinary demonstration kitchen; and scientific labs and meeting rooms. The center was designed as an environmentally-friendly, LEED-certified (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) "green" building and employs a variety of energy efficiency, water conservation and daylight harvesting techniques. Recycled building materials were used in the construction.

Irene Chang Britt, president of Pepperidge Farm and senior vice president global baking and snacking, said, "I feel a tremendous sense of excitement and potential for the opportunities that exist in Pepperidge Farm and Campbell's global baking and snacking businesses. This new innovation center embodies the bright and dynamic future we see ahead."

In honor of its recently retired president of Pepperidge Farm, Campbell named the two-story glass-enclosed structure The Patrick J. Callaghan Innovation Center. Callaghan's career at Pepperidge Farm spanned 33 years. He served as president from 2006 until Aug. 1, 2012. During that time, Callaghan and his team delivered strong business results and a continuous stream of new products, including Milano Melts, Milano Slices, Baked Naturals Snack Crackers, Cracker Chips and Deli Flats thin rolls and also extended its high-growth Goldfish brand to sweet treats and to the bread aisle.

"I am incredibly honored--and humbled--by this recognition. I enjoyed a wonderful career at Pepperidge Farm and Campbell and am proud of what I and my team achieved through the years," said Callaghan. "It is truly a dream come true for me and many others, and I know all the benefits we anticipated here will be brought to life by the Pepperidge Farm and Campbell teams."

Designed by The Dennis Group, Springfield, Mass., and Perkins Eastman, Stamford, Conn., the innovation center is an extension of Pepperidge Farm's headquarters and connects to the main building by a glass enclosed internal walkway, which allows viewing of the research floor. The project also includes extensive upgrading of Pepperidge Farm's existing headquarters, which is set to be completed in early 2013.

Pepperidge Farm, Norwalk, Conn., is a leading provider of premium quality fresh bakery products, cookies, crackers and frozen foods. Among the company's most popular products are Sausalito and Milano cookies, Goldfish and Baked Naturals crackers, frozen Puff Pastry, frozen garlic loaves and Texas toasts and more than 50 varieties of fresh baked breads including Pepperidge Farm Swirl, Farmhouse and Whole Grain. The company added Ecce Panis gourmet artisan breads to its portfolio in 2009. Pepperidge Farm has been part of Campbell Soup Co. since 1961.