Cover Story: TasteTech

Commemorating 30 years of innovation this year, TasteTech looks back on their humble beginnings to where they are today, emphasising that people have always been at the heart of the business.  

Back in November 1992, Roger Sinton and his wife Janis converted the garage of their family home into a trial encapsulation plant. They also set up office space in two rooms of the house. These were the humble beginnings of TasteTech. 

Roger had just been made redundant from his job as Managing Director at Fries and Fries, an American-owned flavour house with a site in South Bristol that was being closed down. However, he had spotted a gap in the market for fat encapsulation. He initially worked with a consultant to develop the idea, before landing a placement at KPMG, where he wrote the business plan for TasteTech and secured an investment from a firm of venture capitalists. 

Now Roger needed a team of people and a place of business, and the closure of Fries and Fries provided both. He enlisted the help of some of his former colleagues, and Janis was roped in as the company secretary, accountant, and buyer due to her numeracy skills! 

Next, the team needed to find a space with a high roof to fit the massive, custom-built machinery needed for their matrix particle encapsulation technology. The site in South Bristol where Fries and Fries had operated had just become available and would serve their needs well. That site is still the home of TasteTech today – although the company has grown from one unit into four (plus an off-site storage unit), and from a team of 6 to a workforce of more than 70. 

It was in 1998 that the company leased a second unit next door to their first, connecting the two to extend the main production area. They also added a storage area, a production office and a canteen for their growing team. 

Dr Gary Gray became Technical Manager in 2001. In a previous job with a competitor, he was asked to re-create a ‘TasteTech-style’ encapsulate. He learned a lot about the company in the process, and when a role at TasteTech became available, he jumped at the chance to work with a market leader. “Roger Sinton was well known in the industry. I wanted to absorb his knowledge,” said Gary. 

He remembers how, in the early days, he held a forklift license, so he could take raw materials and products from the shelves for testing. “The team was small back then, so we did the whole process, from start to finish,” Gary said.

Read the full story in our magazine.

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Media contact

Caitlin Gittins
Editor, International Confectionery
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 920

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