On Tuesday 25th September, Mars Chocolate opened a new £6m research and development facility in Slough. The company said that the "state of the art" site would be responsible for delivering new products to European markets and contributing to Mars' global innovation pipeline. It is Mars' largest research and development facility in Europe and will employ more than 100 R&D associates. Speaking at the ribbon cutting ceremony, Fiona Dawson, president of Mars Chocolate UK, said:

"We are very proud to be officially unveiling our new R&D facility today. Slough is the home of Mars chocolate, and this investment demonstrates our passion for innovation and our continued commitment to British manufacturing. 2012 is a very special year for us as we look to the future with our new facility while celebrating 80 years in the UK."

The centre will be responsible for developing new products and packaging for the UK, as well as markets as far afield as China. Bringing together several separate facilities in a single site, the new facility would enable the 100-strong R&D team to work collaboratively with teams in other departments, Mars said. The centre also contains new equipment that Mars Chocolate innovation director Geoff Bryant said would let it do things that were previously impossible.

“For example, the pilot production line will allow us to start with a single prototype and scale right up,” said Bryant. “We didn’t have the space before.”

The facilities will also be used to help Mars Chocolate deliver on its pledges under the Responsibility Deal. Bryant said better aeration of chocolate is one of the avenues it is pursuing to reducing calorie and fat content. Mars Chocolate president Fiona Dawson opened the site alongside and business & enterprise minister Michael Fallon. ARTICLE SOURCE: the grocer.co.uk Further Information Jenrick Engineering is a recruitment partner for many of the leading Engineering Corporations within the UK, providing an array of contract and permanent job opportunities for engineers who operate within this sector. If you would like to explore job opportunities in this sector, or wish to seek advice regarding recruiting contractors or permanent staff, please contact our offices at Burton on Trent (on 01283 548 121) or Crick, Northampton (on 01788 824 555).