Kiwi contract manufacturer Alaron to expand site following freeze-drying acquisition

By Gary Scattergood

- Last updated on GMT

Alaron's Sara Ching and Carey Wernick, pictured when NutraIngredients-Asia visited their expanded premises in March.
Alaron's Sara Ching and Carey Wernick, pictured when NutraIngredients-Asia visited their expanded premises in March.
New Zealand contract manufacturer Alaron is preparing to submit plans for a new facility at its Nelson site, after acquiring Pharmalink’s freeze-drying business.

The firm only recently completed a multi-million-dollar expansion and renovation project of its premises, resulting in new office, manufacturing and warehouse space.

The firm, which employs around 80 people, undertakes contract work for a raft of major local and international supplement, powder, skincare and animal health brands.

Alaron took over the freeze-drying business from Pharmalink on 1 September.

Pharmalink is focusing on the growth of its core extraction business, and simplifying its service offering to customers.

Land purchase

Alaron GM Claire Quin said the company would continue to operate from the Pharmalink site until it has built its own dedicated freeze-drying facility, which is expected to take 12 months.

"We have purchased adjacent land, site preparation has begun, and we have completed our working plans for the new freeze-drying facility," ​she told us.

"Subject to a review of our regulatory consultants, engineers, architects and builders, plans will be submitted for consent in the next few weeks or shortly thereafter."

Alaron currently has some freeze-drying capabilities to process honey, fruits, vegetables, algae plant material, probiotics, greenshell mussels, and other marine products.

"Once we have built a new dedicated freeze-drying facility on our site and under our existing quality licenses, we are aiming to add the ability to be able to process dairy and all animal-origin raw materials,"​ said Quin.

Finished products

All existing Pharmalink employees working in the freeze-drying business alone are now employed by Alaron.

"Currently, the freeze-drying business would equate for less than 10% of Alaron’s existing business,"​ said Quin.

"We are committed and dedicated to growing this, especially once we have moved the freeze-dryers across to our site and increased the capability of the types of raw materials we are able to process.

"The current client base is a wide variety of businesses in the natural health industry, from ingredient suppliers through to finished product brand marketers."

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