French Village Bakery has invested £850,000 to expand its current operations and develop its catering division.
The Belfast-based business opened in 1981 as a producer of artisan breads, cakes and buns. In 2014, production moved to a purpose-built bakehouse, where the business was able to diversify into the catering industry.
Now, the family-owned bakery is to develop this area with the help of an £850k investment sum, supported by Danske Bank. The move will create 10 new jobs.
“We feel there has been a natural progression from when the business supplied sandwiches and catered small events to catering for large corporate events and weddings,” said French Village Bakery director Ashley French.
“With the catering division being located at our bakehouse, we can also use the skill set we have in the bakery to assist with products required for catering events, from fresh bread to wedding cakes,”
“The support of Danske Bank has allowed us to expand our catering kitchen and equip it with top-of-the-range equipment, such as new ovens. We’ve also been able to break into new markets and that has really helped us get a foothold in the larger catering market.”
French added that the business would continue to develop its product range and expand its wholesale bakery arm into new geographical markets.
It will also expand the French Village Academy, an apprentice scheme for chefs, bakers and logistics and warehouse operatives, creating four apprentice positions.