Global ingredient supplier Ingredion Incorporated, Westchester, Ill., used this summers’ annual IFT exhibition to launch Idea Labs, a 24-site global network of customer innovation centers. Then in mid-October, officials hosted customers and media at Ingredion’s Bridgewater, N.J., location, a global Idea Lab resource and one of three U.S. Idea Lab sites. 

Ilene Gordon, Ingredion chairman and CEO, was on hand in Bridgewater to greet Ingredion’s open house visitors. IXL Center Managing Director Dr. Hitendra Patel then opened the program with a keynote address about innovation.

The day included visits to Ingredion’s sweeteners application labs, food pilot plant, culinary center and process innovation center. Other experts discussed Ingredion’s “seed-to-shelf” food ingredient quality and development procedures, Ingredion’s nutritional offerings and proprietary consumer insights research involving sweetness and texture preferences.

The United States is the first country to launch Ingredion Idea Labs innovation centers, with labs in Bedford Park, Ill., and Indianapolis, as well as the global center in Bridgewater. By the end of 2014, Ingredion expects to open similar labs covering Europe, Middle East and Africa; Asia-Pacific; South America; Mexico; and Canada.

—Ingredion Incorporated,