A World of Snack Pellets
Le Caselle S.p.A. Via E. Mattei, 2 - 25026 Pontevico (BS) Italy - Tel. +39 030 9930507 -
Fax. +39 030 9930527 - P.IVA 01637290980 - N. REA: BS - 330425 - Cap. Soc. 1.248.000 Euro i.v.
"Quality to meet your needs… and
This is our main concern"
“Before being big you need to be small”We give you small pellets that become great end-products
The mission of Le Caselle is to design and offer safe pellets for snacks of the best quality to the food industry for the worldwide consumers satisfaction. Five words are the key attributes of our products for your success: “beautiful, good, simple, pure, true”. Indeed our aim is to develop and supply half-products with attractive shapes, nice taste and texture based on simple and well formulated recipes obtained by mixing pure and natural ingredients. The qualification and certification of our manufacturing processes enable us to get long term and fruitful relationships both with suppliers and customers.
Focused on unique snack pellets to fulfill the expectations of unique customers.
Our mission is realized following seven target axis:
1 Product Safety & Quality
5 Human Resources Management
7 Food Defence
Sharing our knowledge and passion with our customers is the best way to have fruitful, long-lasting and trustful relationships.
“When there is a target, then also a sand desert or a dark forest can become a road”The product success comes when all the energies and efforts are properly oriented
Le Caselle, founded in 1991 by Galeazzo Riva, began its activity in 1992 operating on the commercial level of food products, whilst the construction of the factory itself was well on its way as well as the setting up of the production plant. In 1995 parallel to the first production line, the manufacturing of high-quality semi–finished pellets of potato pellets, was set up. The know-how achieved soon enabled the company Le Caselle to reach a high level ranking in the world market.
The development of the company is based on three main factors
which have helped to enhance the spirit of the “mission”:
- Highest care on quality.
- Constant and proactive R&D of new products on behalf of both the company initiatives as well as the consumer
- Technological innovation
At present, the evolution enables Le Caselle:
1) to place a wide variety of shaped products on the worldwide market, including 3D-SLIT pellets which are at the top of this market category
2) to develop pellets boasting high quality nutritional values
3) to play an important role in the newly-found market of either potato, legumes and cereal-based products
Quality & Operations
“When the job is done with passion,
it is no more applied technology but art”
To get good food you need good ingredients, good technology and procedures, but mainly you need good people
The pellets production follows five main steps
The proper choice of raw materials and their adequate mixing is fundamental to feed the extruder with homogeneous material. Le Caselle can rely on extruders that can work with different temperature profiles and multiple type of screws to have the possibility to cook raw materials of different origin (potato, cereals and legumes), thus getting optimal starch gelatinization and protein cooking either for frying or for hot air expansion pellets. Pellets to be fried are always related with the main snack market driver that is “Pleasure”, while pellets to be hot air expanded belong to the other XTC axis “Healthy” and “Physical” snacks group. Our experience with hot air expanded pellets dates since 2004, ever since we have developed recipes that have satisfied consumers needs in different Countries also thanks to perfect marriage with customer seasoning. The need to respect restrictive standards of variability in the pellet key attributes has guaranteed the highest performance of these pellets in the refining stage carried out at our customer premises.
“Giving a shape (and a texture) to your dreams”, by the mean of different tools
The key attributes of our product are: shape, texture and basic taste that has then to marriage with final sesoning applied by our customers after the expansion of our pellets.
There is still a great response and acknowledgement on the market to what were the first types of pellets, especially with the Stikss tubes
It is the classic evergreen product with flat, waved or rippled surface
It is our big success because they meet the requirements of sensorial appeal and design both in texture and in taste;
They are suitable to the different expansion techniques and they are also a positive reply to the need of using the most different ingredients to obtain attractive taste and texture
An exclusive proposal suitable for specific needs to get crunchy texture and highly seasoned surface.
It is the last development of the previously listed shaping techs, particularly fitting the need to acquire a high spicy or fruity seasoning, especially necessary whenever the pellets are hot air expanded .
Quality Policy is at the top of our Mission Statement document. Together with the HACCP, it is based on Codex Alimentarius Guidelines. Our TQM enable us to guarantee the highest Safety and Quality standards which comply with the requirements of both our Customers and of independent organizations such as BRC. The Global Quality of food (Safety, Nutritional Value, Subjecttive Quality, Social Sustainability and Environmental Sustainability) is our care.
QL Quality Laboratory is involved in the control of the flow of all materials which enter into the process, starting from the ingredients and packaging materials, to then pass on to the intermediate half products and right up to the pellets and end products of the frying or hot air expansion production. All the batches of produced pellets are re-tested after 3 days (stabilization period) in conformity to their key attributes agreed upon together with the customer. QL is responsible for the enforcement of the Plan of Analysis regarding all the microbiological-chemical-toxicological tests which are run by the external lab. QL plays a significant role in the R&D activity.
The importance of the R&D activity is fundamental for products which have to face constant changes of market expectations. This department is particularly active in understanding the expectations coming from different Customers and Countries. We have R&D activity either pushed by Le Caselle and pulled by the customers and these go hand in hand with partnership for taylor-made references.
“To eat is a necessity, but to eat
intelligently is an art”
And to get the “right food” needs cleaverness too
Certainly the key point is defining and meeting the target consumers needs and expectations that have to be clearly reported on the New Product Development Briefing filled by the customer in cooperation with us. The end-consumer has to be clearly identified: is he all snack user or a snack user that want to eat healthier, a better for you snack user or a nutraceutical and healthy snack eater, a sport snack eater, or?
Following the hearing of the consumer’s voice, the ingredients
to use, the target nutrition facts and sensory key attributes of the
product have to be identified to exit the Research
“funnel” entering the Development
This is our core activity: the right ingredients selection, their proper processing by running trials until we get the “right food”.
This R&D step can be done by means of trials on pilot plant for first “protoptype” pellets and/or with trials run on the industrial plant for “preliminary” pellets. Scale up tests will then allow to write the final product specifications and the relative business proposition.
“Genius is 1% inspiration and 99%
In R&D activity, R (the funnel) is short and D (the tunnel) is long and challenging, but it pays when well done
Every year we run 150-200 R&D trials, because we are
screening tens of different ideas in parallel. Not all the projects
reach the final goal and become products launched on the market, but
all the recipes we tested (nowadays are more than 1800), even those
with negative results become part of our valuable knowledge also thanks
to our New Product Data Record that tracks all our information that can
be re-used for future trials, so we avoid to reinvent the wheel again
Le Caselle R&D activity has 4 main directions:
- New Product Development
- Incremental Quality Improvement of existingproducts
- Productivity increase
- Variability reduction
Due to the fact that the end consumer is the main driver of food innovation and market trends, our R&D activity can also be categorized in the following branches using the XTC Five Branches Tree.
It is well known that food has an great effect on mood and emotion. The main tendency of snack innovation is pleasure and sensory appeal. Taste remains always the King of the consumer drivers (see our Rippled Chips and 3D slit potato and Cereal based pellets). For this reason we focused our sensory panel test members to fix sensory evaluation techniques in accordance to our customers so as to guarantee the agreed sensory profile in order to then satisfy the requirements during the production throughout the year.
The second group of innovative products is the health category: the Veggies chips and straw (pea, tomato&carrots and spinach&broccoli) have developed to be fried (but with the aim to have a reduced oil uptake), or to be hot air expanded. In the latter case our aim is to obtain a proper end product surface to attract enough seasoning and having a texture/mouth feeling that can be well accepted by the consumer and attract a wider range of consumers Whole grain products are well represented in our innovation portfolio. Snacks containing high quantity fiber are well represented in this group. Moreover salt mitigation of snacks is one of our fundamental target too.
Due to the changing of eating habits and to continuous decline of formal meal time, a growing number of foods are now considered snack. More consumers are looking for quick & healthy portable and easy-to-eat smaller meals which manufacturers can fill. To design new specific shapes, with unique surface and texture will be fundamental to propose products for multiple snack consumption occasions through the day which are easily edible by people of different age-groups Chips, sticks, rings, tubes and strips and can be the answer to ready to eat food request, but can become also an opportunity for foodies, who like to use them as ingredients for their own creativity.
The need to increase the protein intake in a healthier diet so as to achieve a higher fitness level, has been met by developing high protein snacks. Different Legumes have been introduced in our recipes such as soy, adzuki, lentils, chick pea together with different types of fibres derived from different sources. The request to increased the protein content up to high values, has to be carefully evaluated for its consequences on the poor product acceptability due to the risk to get a “bland” taste and texture.
It is well known that food has an great effect on mood and emotion. The main tendency of snack innovation is pleasure and sensory appeal. Taste remains always the King of the consumer drivers (see our Rippled Chips and 3D slit potato and Cereal based pellets). For this reason we focused our sensory panel test members to fix sensory evaluation techniques in accordance to our customers so as to guarantee the agreed sensory profile in order to then satisfy the requirements during the production throughout the year .
”You can design and create, and
build the most wonderful place in the world.
But it takes people to make the dream a reality”
Le Caselle human resources management covers either internal and external relationships. About the internal relationship our aim is to build a motivated workforce involved in all the company activities. The involvement at all levels of all members of staff in the company business is a key factor. Le Caselle invest a considerable budget allocation on training the personnel to keep their skills at high level, to continuously improve them as well, so to afford the future challenges in the best way. The focus of training program concerns human being safety, productivity, quality, food safety and security.
Our strategy is to keep the personnel turnover at lower possible levels, convinced that the stability of relationships is also one of the most important tools to develop trust for a better tomorrow. Most of the staff began working for the company from the very start and thus boast a length of service which coincides with the number of years which the company has been productive. This entails high-level know how, specialized assistance and competence in problem solving which may arise in the production phase. As a result of the above-stated motivation goal, we report positive performance indicators that affirm the link between motivation, training and performances.
Regarding the external relationships Since our foundation we have focused only on the production of pellets, thus avoiding any competition with our customers. Customers’ long term agreement, positive vendor assurance scores, consistent commitments in Total Quality Management, transparency in pellets characterization, are demonstration of our reliability and loyalty.
Le Caselle, which is situated right in the middle of the Padana Valley, have always dedicated great attention to the respect of the surrounding environment. Since 2008 we implemented a monitoring system with the aim to reduce the environmental impact of our factory. The indicators being: electric energy and gas consumption, wet and dry waste, packaging material (paper and plastics). The relative Environmental Management Strategy is characterized by the key words: reorganize – reduce – recycle – reuse. The scope is to minimize the environment impact by acting Lean, decreasing the consumption of all the resources (energy, raw materials, water, packaging,…) and reducing the waste production.
About electrical energy , we have on-site production of electricity derived from renewable energy source; 160KW solar panels are fitted on the warehouse roof top, 50 KW are the higher efficiency sun following solar panels. Moreover, Le Caselle is a promoting partner of the ILUM company srl of Renewable Energies which operates at both national and international levels.
“We do not inherit the Earth from
our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children"
Waste reduction is the second tool where our efforts have been focused. Wet waste material coming from manufacturing process are now collected an supplied to biogas plant for energy production while dry waste goes to animal feeding. Packaging material such as paper and plastic are bound to be recycled. Nowadays the implemented Environmental Program allows Le Caselle to recycle 75% of the total waste we get from manufacturing process, which is, we think, an excellent and remarkable result.
“The only way to do a great job is
to love what you do”
If we shape pellets and you refine them with highest care and love, we together can do a great job
Le Caselle sells its products all over Europe, in the USA, in the Middle and Far East, in South Africa and in Oceania.
Both the successful results achieved so far as well as the continuously growing request on the American market have brought about the setting up of a new branch of Le Caselle company in the United States. Therefore Le Caselle has invested in a new pellet producing factory in there. It goes by the name of LCAmerica and its headquarters are in High Point, near Greensboro (North Carolina). The US new production plant has begun its activity during the course of 2013.
The close contact and cooperation existing with our customers is the key factor towards the success of our products and supplies. The cooperation implies that we can also assist our customers when a new product must be tested at their premises or in occasion of the first production.
Phone: +39 030 9930507
Fax: +39 030 9930527
|Cristoforo Riva||Benedetto Riva|
|Quality & Operation Manager||Logistic & Customers Service|
|Pierangelo Prestini||Piero Baggi|
Pontevico (Brescia), Via Enrico Mattei 2
right opposite to the tollgate of Pontevico On the A21 toll road, direction Brescia-Cremona-Piacenza-Torino.
110 Kms east-south-east of Milan, nearest airports Milano Malpensa Milan, Linate Milan, Orio al Serio Bergamo.