SINGAPORE (June 20): Cargill, the US trader of grain and other commodities, has opened its first innovation centre in Singapore which aims to employ 20 food scientists by end of the year.

The innovation centre will help its Asia Pacific customers anticipate market forces and shifting consumer values around tastes, nutrition and food safety by connecting them to a global network of 10 other innovation centres and 2,000 food scientists who will provide R&D, applications and technical service support.

Cargill says Singapore was chosen to be the third centre due to its strategic location, as well as the government’s strong focus on building the country as a global innovation hub. The two other innovation centres are located in Beijing and Shanghai.

Peter Van Deursen, president of Cargill's global starches, sweeteners & texturisers business, says, “Consumers in Asia Pacific want healthy and nutritious food and drinks but do not want to compromise on taste, quality and affordability. Our new innovation centre in Singapore will allow us to collaborate more closely with our customers in this region to create and reformulate products that better suit these changing consumer trends."