MABALACAT CITY – A P2-billion, fully automated bakery plant that is capable of producing 400,000 loaves and buns daily was inaugurated at the Teco Industrial Park in Barangay Bundagul here on Tuesday.
Gardenia Bakeries Philippines Inc. said this is its second largest facility in the Philippines next only to Laguna. This facility is expected to increase its sales by 17 percent to P8 billion this year as it will hike its production capacity with its newly opened plant.
“We hope to close the year with about P8 billion in sales value,” Gardenia Philippines president Simplicio Umali Jr. said during the inauguration of the plant.
“This new factory has a white loaf production line, a flavored loaf line, a bun and pandesal line and a snack toast line. With these four new production lines, the Pampanga factory will be able to produce nearly 400,000 loaves and buns every day, ready for delivery to supermarkets, groceries and convenience stores,” Umali said.
The new plant is fully automated from the use of an upgraded concept in the ingredient handling and makeup systems and make use of robotics in handling baking pans and a unique technology in the depanning process.
It was learned that this concept is seen to bring Gardenia’s total production capacity to 1.8 million loaves and buns per day and allow the company to serve increasing bread demand in the country.
“While we are a rice-eating country, but due to lifestyle changes and increased health consciousness of Filipinos, bread consumption is growing,” Umali noted. He added that the market has grown by 10 to 15 percent. Gardenia currently accounts for 60 percent of the market.
Apart from the Gardenia brand, the firm also produces bread under affordable brand NeuBake to cater to those in the low-income market. Of Gardenia’s production, 10 percent is accounted for by NeuBake.
“As the market demand improves, we will expand it (NeuBake). In fact, we intend to make that as much as 40 percent in the future because the low-income market is very large. So, we want to make this product available for them as a second brand,” Umali said.
Kapampangan Chef Vince Garcia is the official catering partner for the event.