The first step towards the future
The first step towards the future
The first assertion of a young company
Launch of the Milaneza pastas
Extension of the milling facilities
Second generation of the Lage family
The New Paradense Wheat Milling Plant
Cerealis, a legacy of generations
First cellophane packages
New production and packaging lines in the pasta factory
The first Portuguese durum-wheat semolina plant
A vision for the future
50th Anniversary of Amorim, Lage, Lda.
Strong commitment to product promotion
Biscuits - a new business for Amorim, Lage, Lda.
The "Anos 80" project: Preparing the company for the clash of accessing the European Economic Community
Predicting market demands
Mergers and acquisitions in the industrial flour business
Milaneza supports the sports
75 years of successes
New acquisitions and mergers in the industrial flour business
Creation of Amorim, Lage, SGPS, S.A. and quality certification
The start of a new cycle
A new identity for Cerealis
Reaching out to the world
90 years of future
Nacional reinforces its positioning as a healthy brand
Milaneza invests in a new brand image
Opening of the milling plant in Lisbon
Continuous improvement of operations, an increasing reality
Nutrition - promoting a balanced and healthy diet
Relaunching the Nacional brand
Nacional Wins food nutrition awards - Product Innovation
Milaneza launches new recipe of wholegrain pastas, now with oatmeal fibre
Driven by a strong entrepreneurial spirit, on 9 February 1919 José Alves de Amorim, Manuel Gonçalves Lage and Aníbal Augusto Soares form Amorim, Lage & Soares, Lda. From 1931, the company is owned in equal shares by the Amorim and Lage families, following the departure of Aníbal Augusto Soares. These were the first steps of what would eventually become a successful industrial group in the milling and pasta sector. It was then that José Alves de Amorim and Manuel Gonçalves Lage discovered the secret of the business. Theirs was a partnership based on a perfect communion of values, ethics, and entrepreneurial spirit, and focused on innovation, quality and the capacity to predict market trends and needs. In Águas Santas (Maia) an entrepreneurial vision is born, based on a dynamic spirit and driven by the founders' know-how and motivation to succeed, which were passed on to the following generations.
The first assertion of a young company: Moagem Paradense doubles its milling capacity to 25 tonnes/24 hours.
The innovative and bold spirit of our founders and the successes achieved until then led us to develop other industrial activities, with the establishment of a pasta product factory using the most modern machinery and technology to date. This resulted in the launch of our Milaneza pasta products, which have quickly gained recognition due to their quality. The respect for tradition and quality has always been a part of our history, enabled by an ever-present capacity to follow the evolving market with continuous renovation and technological improvement.
Time goes on, the company grows and the successes shared by partners, employees, family members and friends, together with our stance in the industry, drive our founders to extend their milling facilities. Therefore, they acquire Moagem do Minho, Lda. and Moagem da Restauração, Lda., which would be, years later, transferred to Águas Santas.
This year marks the death of Manuel Gonçalves Lage. He is succeeded by his sons António Augusto Gonçalves da Costa Lage and Rodrigo Gonçalves da Costa Lage. The latter was already active in the daily management of the company. Under a renovated partnership, José Alves de Amorim and the second generation of the Lage family take the helm of the company with a motivation to seek new opportunities.
The post-war period was a time to launch of new projects whose investments had been held back by the Second World War. Thus, Amorim, Lage, Lda. regains its investment momentum, updating and expanding the two production facilities in Águas Santas. Along the first battery of wheat silos, a new milling facility is built. The building receives the first Portuguese milling facility with pneumatic transport of products. This year, the milling facility dating back to 1919 ceases production, marking the end of one of the earlier periods of Amorim, Lage, Lda. Still during the same period, Moagem do Minho, Lda., in Guimarães, is transferred to Parada - Águas Santas. The equipment is installed in a building next to the new milling facility. The end of the Second World War has profound consequences for the pasta products factory. It is in this period that the Milaneza pasta factory receives its first continuous presses for pasta production, as well as new dryers with the most modern and efficient drying schemes.
In March this year, José Eduardo Marques de Amorim, son of the founding partner José Alves de Amorim and current Chairman of the Board of Cerealis, is appointed General Manager, which marks the start of a cooperation with his father at the helm of the company. However, 14 March 1954 becomes a milestone in the company's history due to the death of the last surviving founder José Alves de Amorim. Amorim, Lage, Lda. is now entirely managed by second generation members. Rodrigo Gonçalves da Costa Lage and José Eduardo Marques de Amorim will continue their fathers' work.
This is a remarkable year for the Milaneza brand, thanks to the launch of the first cellophane packages. This was a huge innovation at a time when almost all pasta products were being sold in bulk.
1958 sees the start-up of a new industrial unit next to the Milaneza pasta factory. The first industrial bread production facility and the fist continuous oven in Portugal start their operation. This is also when sliced and packaged bread are launched, an innovation back then. Equally remarkable was the launch of Donuts, the industrial bakery that many years later would be relaunched in Portugal.
During the 1960s, new production lines for spaghetti and cut pasta are installed, together with semi-automatic packaging lines. This is a decade of expansion, thanks to the significant investment in the pasta factory, which also receives the first semi-automatic rolling machine in replacement of the manually rolled skeins. By this time, the government enacts the end of the sale of pasta products in bulk, a move supported by our company, since it allowed Milaneza products to be delivered to the consumer in a packaged form with a guarantee of origin.
To consolidate the growth of Milaneza pasta products in the domestic market, we decide to invest in the first Portuguese durum-wheat semolina plant, which starts its operations on 28 July 1962. This new milling plant, specializing in the production of durum-wheat semolina, provided a regular supply of high quality raw materials for the production of pasta products. This initiative was a major competitive differentiator, which we were able to keep over time.
This year marks the construction of a new wheat mill in Adémia, Coimbra. Under a partnership with Augusto Eduardo de Magalhães Paranhos and his family, Moacir - Moagem de Coimbra, Lda. is born. It would allow an extended sales coverage towards the South in the industrial flours sector. Paranhos Family's Moagem da Granja, Lda. was already a reference in the sector, and the new unit, planned to the utmost detail, is an example of modernity and efficiency to this day.
50 years of history of a company that has become the biggest Portuguese milling group. The anniversary has been celebrated extensively in a party with the committed participation of partners, employees and their families.
At a time when supermarkets proliferate and new business concepts arise, we commit ourselves to participating in trade shows as a way to present and promote our products which supplements our advertising plan for the brand.
Given the economic climate of the period, we decide to stop the production and sale of bread. Replacing it, we install a new biscuit factory using the existing building and infrastructures. Still in this period, another second generation member of the family, António Joaquim Marques de Amorim, starts working in the company as managing partner, a position he will hold until 1981.
Early in the 1980s, aware of the deep transformations arising from Portugal's accession to the then European Economic Community (EEC), we use our knowledge and technical skills to face these new challenges and opportunities. Therefore, we start a mega-operation aimed at renovating and modernising our technologies. Our industrial facilities in Maia are subject to a complete machinery makeover and receive the latest production lines for pasta products. The "Anos 80" project allowed us to withstand the impact of cross-border trade during the first two years of membership. Following this period, the market slowly stabilises and the Milaneza pasta products come out with a strengthened position.
As a follow-up to our strategic plan and "Anos 80" modernization project, we launch a new image which would be used until 1993. This development resulted in innovative packaging solutions, differentiated by the use of the green colour we still use today. This is also when we develop new quality products to meet the evolving consumer demands.
Aware that survival in the milling sector would only be feasible through mergers and concentrations, the Paradense common wheat milling facility shuts down in Águas Santas and merges with Companhia de Moagens Harmonia, S.A., of which Amorim, Lage, Lda. becomes a shareholder. By this time, the Harmonia milling plants had already merged with Moagem Concordia, Lda. in Freixo.
Being a healthy and natural food, ideal for sportspeople's diets, Milaneza pastas have reinforced its support to some sports, not only locally but also nationally and internationally. Examples of these are sailing, motor sports and the Maia-Milaneza professional cycling team, among others. We have twice been awarded the title of "Official Food" of the Portuguese Olympic Committee at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996 and in Sidney in 2000. These campaigns have made a strong contribution for increasing brand awareness in Portugal.
After 75 years of successes, the Milaneza brand reaches leadership in the pasta products market. Our leadership results from a strategy adapted to the specifics of the sector and followed with accuracy and commitment by all our employees. In this new period, we decide to extend the Board of Directors with the participation of Rui Manuel Amorim Silva e Sousa, a third generation member of the Amorim family who, together with José Eduardo Marques de Amorim, Maria Manuela Nogueira Lage, José Eduardo Menezes Falcão and Dionísio Cerqueira Correia starts a new era for the company's business.
During this period, we acquire the full shares of Companhia de Moagens Harmonia, S.A. and shut down Mariano e Companhia, Lda. in Macedo de Cavaleiros, concentrating all our production in the former. At the same time, we also acquired the full shares of Moacir.
Due to the increasing size and the consequent need to match the organisation to this reality, we decide to undergo restructuring by creating a holding company named Amorim, Lage, SGPS, S.A. All the production and sales activities, until then developed by Amorim, Lage, S.A., are now under the responsibility of the new company Milaneza - Massas e Bolachas, S.A., Companhia de Moagens Harmonia, S.A. and Amorim, Lage - Comércio Internacional de Cereais e Derivados, S.A., the latter being devoted to purchasing the cereals needed for the Group's entire production, as well as exporting of all products. A new step under a strong management composed by José Eduardo Marques Amorim, Maria Manuela Nogueira Lage and Rui Manuel de Amorim Silva de Sousa, the latter elected as Managing Director, a position he still holds today.
Milaneza was the first company to obtain a quality certification under ISO 9002 for the manufacture of pasta products and flour for culinary uses. Harmonia milling company will receive its certification in the following years. With advanced technology and laboratories to control everything from raw materials to the end product, cleanliness and food safety, the Group has always ensured the production of safe, quality products.
Through an initial public offering, we have acquired Companhia Industrial de Transformação de Cereais e Derivados, S.A., owner of the Nacional brand. With this buyout, we acquire a new dimension, becoming the largest Portuguese group in the agro-food business, as well as in cereal milling and pasta product manufacturing. This investment has doubled our turnover and allowed us to enter new market segments. With 160 years of history, the Nacional brand becomes part of the group's development strategy by ensuring the continuity of one of the country's oldest and most emblematic brands. This new dimension led to the development of a strategic plan for long-term investments involving the relocation and construction of new production plants to enhance Cerealis Group's competitiveness. This strategic plan, which until then represented an investment of over 100 million euros, is about to reach the end of the fist execution phase.
The Convent of Beato, connected to Nacional, is now part of our group. This is a heritage we intend to promote and enhance as a privileged place for events serving the city of Lisbon. We have studied he building's potential and made a renovation plan which included all of its supporting infrastructures. The ongoing investment in improving the building allows its use in all types of events for which aesthetics, safety and functionality are a key to success. Proof of it is its already significant international recognition.
This period starts with interventions such as the renewal of the rye milling facility in Freixo and the enlargement of the pasta factory in Maia, which included the installation of an additional production line for pasta.
The construction of a new pasta factory in Maia (Factory 2), one of the great projects of our strategic plan devised in 1999, leads to the closing of the factory in Lisbon, through an unprecedented investment making the production centre in Maia one of the most modern in the Iberian Peninsula, with a logistics centre and automated warehouse capable to handle 12,500 pallets. The factory now has two production lines of 4 tons/hour each, with the possibility for future expansion with two more lines with the same capacity and total automation of production, from raw material warehousing to shipping of the end product.
The global project we have submitted holds that diversifying production and introducing new products would be needed to ensure the sustainability of the industrial centre in Trofa, until then used exclusively for the production of Corn Flakes. Based on market research and analyses by equipment manufacturers, we have installed an extrusion line for breakfast cereals for children.
Together with all the investments in industrial infrastructures, the integration of many of the Group's companies demanded a harmonisation of the information systems. Therefore, a new ERP, or Enterprise Resource Planning (MOVEX), is implemented across all Group companies, to hold all of the Group's data and processes in one single system. This is a cross-organisational platform developed to include the different departments of the company and allow the automation and storage of all data and work procedures. The recovery of the building from 1919, the original milling plant where our business was born and operated until 1950, and its transformation to become the headquarters and central office for the Cerealis Group were of high architectural interest, enhanced the group's entire industrial facilities in Maia, contributed to the growth of the entire organisation and provided a suitable working environment for its employees.
Drawing from a longstanding tradition and an ongoing commitment to the development of innovating, high quality products, the Milaneza brand develops a line of refrigerated solutions which include fresh pastas, pizzas and ready-made meals, becoming a specialist in meal solutions based on pastas and Mediterranean cuisine. In just six months, the brand achieves leadership in these market segments. This successful launch coincided with the renovation of the brand image which kept the green colour as the main distinctive element and adopted the motto "Milaneza - A Recipe for Everything".
Reorganising and simplifying the group's shareholding structure was a must. Therefore, we reorganised the shareholding structure by uniting all the companies in the previous Amorim, Lage Group under a new name: Cerealis. This restructuring has given rise to Cerealis SGPS, S.A. (holding company), Cerealis Produtos Alimentares - S.A. (consumer products division), Cerealis Moagens - S.A. (industrial products division) and Cerealis Internacional - Comércio de Cereais e Derivados, S.A. (cereal and raw material import for all our products and export of end products) and Sociedade Imobiliária Paradense (to maximise profits from our real estate assets not connected to the industrial activity). Benefiting from a unique heritage, Amorim, Lage, S.A., and an identity (Cerealis), we prepared for new challenges with new products in new markets. The new name symbolises the internationalisation, drive and resilience of one of the biggest Portuguese groups in the agro-food sector.
Present across five continents and reaching millions of consumers, Cerealis Internacional is growing in the markets where it operates thanks to the product quality, competitiveness and know-how it acquired over the years. It ensures the purchase of cereals and product export from Cerealis - Moagens, S.A. and Cerealis - Produtos Alimentares, S.A. Export is and always will be one of the most important vectors of our future. Specialising in purchasing the cereals needed for the production of all companies in the Group has become a strategic factor, given its weight in the cost structure of our products. Relying on strong brands and partnering with our clients, suppliers and employees, our goal is to embrace the world with the quality of our products and services.
Building on the the previous renovations, we refit the manufacturing centre in Trofa, bringing about a qualitative and qualitative jump through the installation of equipment for the production of multigrain breakfast cereals and a new toaster for Corn Flakes. At the same time, in other manufacturing centres, we renew the facilities and install various types of equipment, also working to improve the environmental conditions and reduce industrial noise.
The new market and large-scale distribution trends have led us to rethink and analyse the packaging lines for our pastas in terms of the cardboard boxes. Other than being the means through which our product reaches the shops, packaging is increasingly playing a role throughout the supply chain, whether in terms of image vis a vis the consumer or its display function at the point of sale. Based on the factors at play, we have decided to install new packaging lines to increase the offer's flexibility in terms of box type, size and format.
The permanent market demands, the conquest of new strategic markets and the ongoing quest for products with better quality made the concentration of the production of semolina (raw material for the production of pasta) in Águas Santas be a strategic, high-priority, key project. Pursuing our policy of permanent investment in technology, we have taken another important step to strengthen our leadership position in the pasta market, starting the construction of a new semolina plant to replace the ones in Lisbon and Águas Santas. Already in operation, this new semolina plant, one of our most modern factories, benefits from the most advanced technology: a new grain husking system, the latest system for detection and rejection of non-conformities in the grain and a new highly automated mill, with an excellent performance that combines quality, high yield and innovation.
The cohesion of our employees and the way they interact with each other are fundamental for the successful changes, restructurings and new models reflecting the values we espouse. The figure depicts those values in two subgroups: the base values on the inner circle and the differentiating values on the outer circle. To reinforce the corporate identity and stimulate the development of a culture of knowledge among all employees, we have developed a number of actions to promote our values. To that effect, we have created an Internal Communication Group, the Cerealis Magazine, training sessions, Team Building actions, get-togethers "Games without Frontiers" and our anniversary lunch.
positioning and determination in various fields, such as: • Positioning and competitive advantages aimed at differentiation; • Supporting the customers throughout their growth process; • A strong and sustainable base for the internal market; • Integration with the agro-food value chain, from raw materials to consumer; • A product portfolio suited to consumer needs; • Use of the most modern technologies in the production processes; • Reliance on robust information systems to support decisions; • Reliance on consistent and robust quality and food safety systems. A Group with an experience, a culture and an efficient system of processes, as well as an information system, a structure, a strategy...
In 2009 we have initiated a new investment cycle to give all our manufacturing centres the readiness and technological tools to prepare for the market challenges. We will complete the enlargement of our manufacturing centre in Trofa with two additional production lines, one for cereals for children (extruded products) and another for cereals for adults, plus packaging facilities. The extension of the building will allow the creation of an automated warehouse for approximately 10,000 pallets. The ongoing project to adapt the mill building in Lisbon shall include the installation of new, latest-generation milling equipment. Still in the Lisbon manufacturing centre, in the old pasta factory building, we have started the construction of the new packaging line for flour for culinary uses.
Adapting organisational models to the strategic challenges has been a dominant concern of our management team. The most recent development, the creation of logistics departments, came as a result of a deep and thorough activity targeting the entire Supply Chain Management. A deeper integration of the customer and supplier processes results in higher efficiency. The area of information systems has also been an investment priority. The recent implementation of a Business Intelligence solution within the Group's ERP enhances our data and management control tools, which are fundamental to the decision-making process. We pride ourselves on implementing the best management practises through process, organisation, infrastructure and information system restructuring in order to become a customer-oriented company with a broad business vision.
keeps driving the Group with the production and sale of pasta products, biscuits, breakfast cereals, flours for industrial and culinary uses and ready-made meals, keeping up with the tradition of quality. Together with other factors of excellence, the quality we have always pursued has ensured market leadership and is preparing us for 90 more years of success. Following the introduction of changes in the quality certification standards, we once again rank among the first in the country to adopt the ISO 22000:2005 and to receive certification under as per IFS and ISO 9001:2008 standards.
Supplementing our programme to increase exports, the company's internationalisation is a strategic imperative. After a period of studies and negotiations, we have acquired a share of the Czech company Europasta SE, manufacturer and local leader in the pasta sector. We believe that this foothold in Central Europe will be a strong driver for development and consolidation. This is how 90 years of future are created.
The brand reinforces its positioning as a healthy brand and expands its line of biscuits and breakfast cereals. It launches two new lines of biscuits: +Fibra, +Linha and +Ativa healthy biscuits, produced from a strict selection of cereals, rich in fibre, and the nutritionally balanced Animais da Quinta biscuits targeting the children's segment. These biscuits are packed in convenient sachets to take anywhere and consume anytime. As for cereals, it expands the +Linha and Zero lines with chocolate variants.
With a new logo and a new motto - “Feed your Imagination” - Milaneza strengthens the emotional bond with consumers all around the world. The packages undergo a total makeover, becoming more modern and appealing. To reflect the modernity and scope of the brand, a new website is launched and a new spot for TV broadcasting is produced.
On 6 March, the milling plant in Lisbon is officially inaugurated with the attendance of the President of the Portuguese Republic Aníbal Cavaco Silva, the Minister of Economic Affairs Álvaro Santos Pereira and the Deputy Mayor of Lisbon Manuel Salgado. This event was an important landmark for our image as one of the biggest Portuguese groups in terms of industrial activity and sales in the agro-business sector, ensuring visibility over the group's dimension, economic stamina and ambition to grow both domestically and internationally.
Once again, we innovate in the market through Milaneza, now with two pastas for children: Mini Laços with vegetables and Margaridas with vegetables - sources of vitamins, fibre and minerals. Children like them since they enjoy themselves, and parents are thankful.
With an appealing design, the new cereal packages from Nacional ensure a prominent presence on supermarket shelves and allow the intuitive identification of these products so loved by the Portuguese youngsters.
The end of the first semester 2014 marks the end of Kaizen Institute's participation in support of the development and implementation of Lean management methodologies in the areas of operations of Cerealis Produtos Alimentares, which had started in 2012. During this two-year period, 19 functional areas and 368 employees were involved in 478 workshops and 44 subprojects coordinated by an internal team of four employees (C.lean Office) and an external team of consultants. Those functional teams were trained to work systematically on the basis of the 4 Lean pillars: KPI boards and natural team meetings, workspace clean-up based on the 5S best practises, procedure standardisation and structured problem-solving.
Cerealis Moagens expands its line of Specialties under the Concordia brand with the launch of the Composite Wheat Flour for Traditional Baguettes. A composite flour of proven quality, developed specifically for the production of the original French Baguettes.
For our consumers, a healthy and balanced diet is increasingly becoming a concern. For all those looking for a balanced and careful diet, but also for those who seek specific products due to a health condition (gluten intolerance, high cholesterol or constipation), Milaneza presents Natura, its new line of pasta products. This is a line which is natural, healthy, rich, affordable by all, and above all, tasty
In line with a growing concern about the health of the general Portuguese population, and our employees in particular, in 2015 we started a programme dealing with the issues of nutrition and health. Internally, we focused on concerns about nutrition and quality of life of our employees through the implementation of a training program and free nutrition clinics. At the same time, we deployed an information-sharing practice on the subject of nutrition and the regular dissemination of nutrition tips for all employees.
On the external front, we intervened under three different areas:
a. Supporting the brands and products developed;
b. Supporting the marketing team in its interactions with the Innovation & Development area;
c. Supporting different actions in the domain of social responsibility.
As far as the digital universe is concerned, Milaneza has consolidated processes and increased investments in the brand's digital channels. One of the most effective actions was carried out under the celebrations of the World Pasta Day. In October, the brand has produced and released an emotional trilogy under the name "Imagination is limitless", which had more than 260,000 views.
Building on the expanding implementation of Lean methodologies to Cerealis Moagens' operations, in 2015 the C.Lean Office implemented a program to apply continuous improvement methodologies in the milling plants, flour silo and culinary flour packaging section in Lisbon. This project gave the teams the training and work organisation skills provided by those tools, in order to increasing performance. This process was consolidated in 2016.
A very special year for Nacional. A renewed brand reaffirming its status as unique in terms of multiple categories and products, and for its know-how and Portuguese character. This project involved different departments in the company, and benefitted from the key commitment from our partners, customers and suppliers in the areas of communication, design and the most diverse packaging materials.
Together with the implementation project for the Group's new ERP, we devised a plan for organisational involvement, aimed at facilitating the implementation of the project towards its global objective, bearing in mind the motivations and the decisive influence of Cerealis' employees in the process. The first challenge for the teams was to give an identity to the project. As a result, a logo was produced.
"Cerealis changes the shop" - Photos on the Annual Report 2016 In 2016, we developed an internal programme to reinforce experiencing the Group's values, and to improve our brands' presence in retail. This program involved 47 volunteers who implemented changes in 19 shops in the Greater Lisbon area, as well as Porto and Braga, preceded by a real-life session intended to foster team spirit among volunteers from different areas.
The Food & Nutrition Awards, a benchmark initiative as far as innovation, manufacturing, distribution, agriculture, healthcare and education are concerned, awarded Cereais Nacional + Linha Fruut as the winner of the 2017 Product Innovation category.
Directly from packet to wok, without any pre-cooking, Milaneza’s Noodles have added another novelty to the ethnic “Wok” range, a trendy, urban range with all the flavour characteristic of the brand.
With increasingly healthy lifestyle-conscious consumers in mind, our new recipe of Milaneza Natura Integral (whole grain) pastas Includes oatmeal fibre. The new Integral com Fibra de Aveia (Wholegrain with Oatmeal Fibre) combines the flavour of the pasta with the benefits of fibre.