Tate & Lyle is planning a new commercial and food innovation center in the Chicago area as part of its new global structure and intention to focus, fix and grow its business.

Tate & Lyle is creating a new Commercial and Food Innovation Center designed to bring its innovation group and specialty food ingredients business in North America together in a state-of-the-art facility in Hoffman Estates, Ill.

The company says it will relocate from Decatur, Ill., and will invest $26 million in the new global headquarters of the innovation and commercial development group and regional headquarters for specialty food ingredients in North America. The center is expected to open by the end of 2011.  

The facility also will act as the base for U.S. employees with global responsibilities and the president of its bulk ingredients global business unit and staff. These groups are all currently located in Decatur, Ill. Employees from these groups in due course will be relocating to Hoffman Estates. Approximately 160 positions will be housed in the new location.

The 110,000-sq.-ft., three-story building will house laboratories, a demonstration kitchen and sensory testing and analytical and pilot plant facilities. The company says that the new facility will be specifically designed to meet customers’ functional, formulation and nutritional needs and to accelerate the process of bringing new products to market.