QUINCY, MASSACHUSETTS, U.S. — Bay State Milling Co. has begun construction of a new 4,000 square foot innovation center at its headquarters in Quincy, Massachusetts, U.S.

To be named the Rothwell GrainEssentials Center, the facility will be designed to create an “environment that stimulates creative design and delivery of grain-based foods,” the company said. Named in memory of Bernard Rothwell II, who headed the company for many years, the center will focus on Bay State’s value-added flours and grain blends with a strong tilt toward health and wellness, the company said.

Small scale commercial grade equipment will be installed in the center to produce just a wide range of grain-based food, including bread, pizza, pancakes, breadings, tortillas and more.

“We are really excited about building this state-of-the-art innovation in center in Quincy,” said Pete Levangie, president and chief operating officer at Bay State Milling. “It will allow us to bring all functions together to build products and relationships with our customers, while showcasing our 112 years heritage in the grain milling business.”

In 2010, Bay State launched a healthy grain initiative, with the goal of developing flour and dry blended products with increased whole grains content, the development of ingredients that address specific health issues and utilization of specialty grains to create new tastes and textures.

Doug DeWitt, vice-president of customer and business development at Bay State, said the Rothwell GrainEssentials Center will be at the heart of the company’s healthy grain initiative.

“We really anticipate having our customers working side by side with us developing great tasting products that meet the requirements of the National School Lunch Program, 2010 Dietary Guidelines and health conscious consumers,” he said.