A food manufacturer celebrating its 70th anniversary this year has unveiled a £1 million extension plan.
Blakemans, one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of sausage and meat products, has been granted planning permission to extend one of its main production areas to enable them to continue to meet the ever increasing demands for their produce.
Investments in 2022 saw the installation of two new inline ovens in their cooking plant. One replaced an older model with the other being an additional unit. These instillations have seen an increase in cooked production volumes by 50 per cent. The new extension will service the cooked branch of the business.
The family-owned company, based in Chesterton, expects work to begin this month and be completed by the end of April.
Marketing Manager Anna Birks said: “Blakemans is as renowned for the quality and consistency of their products as they are for their continual reinvestment back into the business, from building extensions to investments in machinery and their people.
“We’ve reached a stage where customer demand is ever growing but our production capacity is not. The new extension will guarantee continuity of supply for our customers going forward.”
“Initially we expect to move 115 tonnes a week of production into the new area, with the space and equipment to allow for potential future growth of up to 160 tonnes per week,” she added.
The company employs around 300 people and produces a mixture of chilled, cooked and frozen pork products used in everything from ready meals to fish and chip shops, major high street retailers, supermarkets and restaurants.
It was founded in 1953 by James Blakeman, whose son Philip is now Managing Director and daughter Sue is Financial Director of the business. The 164 square metre extension is the fifth phase of developments since the firm moved to High Carr Business Park in 2000.