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May 26, 2021updated 02 Jun 2021 10:43am

UK sausage maker Heck upping production capacity, entering new category

Heck, the UK sausage maker, is to spend GBP3.5m (US$4.9m) on expanding its manufacturing plant.

By Andy Coyne

The business, based in North Yorkshire in northern England, said the development of its plant at Bedale will double its manufacturing capacity and allow it to move into other product areas, such as cooked snacks.

As well as the 40,000 sq ft expansion, Heck has also installed a vertical farm onsite –built by industry specialist Vertical Future – which will provide vegetables and herbs for its products.

The company, founded by the Keeble family in 2015, said the development will allow it to make one million sausages a day, helping it achieve its goal of GBP100m turnover by 2025.

According to a Companies House filing in February, Heck Food Ltd generated turnover of GBP26.1m in the 12 months to 31 July 2020, up 10.5% on a year earlier. The business made an operating profit of GBP518,030, versus GBP514,516 the previous year. Profit for the financial year stood at GBP564,152, against GBP640,401 a year before.

It is understood the company believes it will get to its 2025 turnover target through the doubling of its capacity, as well as its expansion into cooked snacks and other meal occasions.

Heck will also be creating 20 new jobs, both in the factory and in non-production roles.

Co-founder Jamie Keeble said: “We’re one of the last independent businesses in the UK sausage industry, and our great taste and hands-on approach has made us the number one premium brand.

“Our vegan and frozen range were big growth areas in 2020 and we are now launching a completely new range of cooked snacks into Boots, WH Smith and Tesco.  This is a massive market opportunity, particularly with travel and leisure opening up.”

The launch is centred around Bangin’ Bites, Heck’s first foray into the ‘grab and go’ market. These are mini, cooked versions of its 97% and Chicken Italia sausages in portable pots.

Heck sausages include Paprika Chicken and Chorizo-Style.

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