Cumbria-based artisan cheese maker, Appleby Creamery, has secured a £250,000 loan from the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF).
Founded in 2008, Appleby Creamery is located in Appleby-in-Westmorland in the Eden Valley. The business specialises in making high quality, premium food and drink brands and making them available to a wider audience.
The business will use the loan to carry out alterations to their newly-acquired, industrial unit and to move into new international markets including China and the USA. The new facility will be a state-of-the-art production facility capable of meeting the most demanding food safety standards. The loan will also provide the growth capital needed to help this expanding business meet the surge in demand forecast after winning a number of significant new contracts in the UK and overseas.
Appleby Creamery currently employs nine staff and has annual sales of over £500,000 and this is expected to increase as a result of the new funding package.
The business is operated by four experienced businessmen with complimentary farming and food sector backgrounds. Stuart MacLennan, who brings 25 years’ experience from the Agri/Food industry, fourth-generation dairy farmer Mark Callander, Maurice Walton, original founder of the Creamery, who brings 30 years’ experience in the dairy/food hygiene sector and Pete Crouch who brings 30 years sales and marketing experience
Managing director of Appleby Creamery, Maurice Walton said: “As a growing business we’re faced with the challenges of accessing finance and NPIF has provided us with a platform to make the most of the market opportunities.
“Our strategy is to focus on domestic growth, while exploring opportunities to trade overseas. We are already seeing increased interest from customers in Asia and have started the process of licensing our products for sale in the Chinese market, so it’s an exciting time for us.”
Maria Ramsdale, investment executive at FW Capital, said: “It’s been a pleasure to work with Stuart and the team at Appleby Creamery. They have a great range of products and are exactly the sort of growth company the NPIF debt fund was set up to help. It’s rewarding to work with a company that is committed to driving their business into new territories with positivity and passion for both customer service and quality of product.”
Grant Peggie, director at British Business Bank, said: “Cumbria is synonymous with quality food & drink and there are a number of entrepreneurial food manufacturers in the region that are gaining recognition across the UK and internationally. We are excited about the investment in Appleby Creamery as it demonstrates the strength of home-grown food producers that we have on our doorstep in the North of England.”
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