New Investment and jobs at UK’s biscuit manufacturer
Gateshead based Northumbrian Fine Foods (NFF), the UK’s leading gluten and milk-free biscuit manufacturer, is experiencing soaring demand for its products, which in turn is resulting in new investment and creating additional jobs.
Turnover at the company has jumped over the last year by 25.8% from £13.9m to £17.5m and there are ambitious plans for further growth.
Investment and innovation in the award-winning business has resulted in over 100 new gluten free biscuits products being launched by NFF over the last three-and-a-half years, including digestives, indulgent cookies and energy bars.
Recent investment included a new £1.2m bake oven and production line, which is now fully operational and is already significantly adding to production capacity.
The new line will help meet the increasing demand for the company’s rapidly expanding range of biscuits, especially in the gluten-free sector. The oven and associated production line has increased baked production output by around 30% and created 40 new jobs in the process, bringing total employment to around 200.
“The new bake line will enable us to further develop our range of ‘free-from’ biscuits and cookies to meet strong customer demand,” says David Wood, NFF business improvement director. “This investment will reinforce our leading position in the gluten-free sector and enable us to develop new markets, including export.”
The new line will focus on the production of a wide range of different biscuits including ‘indulgent’ cookies, rotary moulded biscuits and bake bars such as Granola.
As well as major supermarket own-label products, NFF also manufactures gluten-free biscuits under the Prewett’s brand. About 70% of the UK’s gluten-free sweet biscuit production is now carried out at the NFF site.
“We are proud to be the UK’s leading gluten and milk free biscuit manufacturer, says Wood. “New product innovation is at the heart of our operation and we are continually developing great new ranges of biscuits for our customers.”
Quality is a key underlying driving force, which has resulted in awards for their biscuits, including Prewett’s Gorgeously Gluten Free Spicy Dark Chocolate & Ginger Cookies, which scooped a prestigious Grocer Award in October 2016.
Wood added: “We are delighted to have experienced an excellent year of trading with new product launches, range extensions and growing consumer demand in the ‘free from’ sector all helping to fuel this growth. This strong performance is testament to the hard work of every member of staff here and the future is looking extremely encouraging.”