Italy's leading meat free and organic manufacturer, Biolab, is launching a secondary brand and moving into the frozen category as it looks to drive growth in international markets.

The firm currently sells organic and meat-free chilled product in Italy and other European markets under the Biolab brand. Biolab also manufactures products for retailer private label. The group distributes to Greece, the UK, France, Spain, the Nertherlands and Cyprus. Germany is currently Biolab's largest overseas market.

However, commercial and marketing manager Tanya Klancic tells just-food demand from further afield has prompted the firm to develop a line of frozen items. "We will be launching in frozen because we have a lot of interest from markets like Australia, Malayisa, Dubai and America," she reveals.

Biolab is also preparing to debut a secondary brand, Liveg, as part of its growth drive. Currently, trademark restrictions limit the markets and channels that the Biolab brand can be sold into, Klancic explains.

The company has seen strong sales growth - with revenue increasing at a rate of 40-50% - as demand for vegetarian and organic products increases globally, Klancic suggests.

She attributes this expansion to a number of factors. "Many people - even if they are not vegetarian or vegan - are trying to eat less meat for health reasons... Environmental [concerns] also play a part and traceability is becoming more important."

In order to meet this jump in demand in Italy and internationally, Biolab is expanding production and the group will open its second factory next month, Klancic concludes.