Ingredients supplier Edme is planning a new factory to meet growing demand for wholegrain and gluten-free products.

The business, which supplies flours, mixes and kibbles to bakers and other food industries, has submitted a planning application to build on a 11.7-hectare site four miles from its current HQ in Mistley, Essex.

“The growing demand for natural wholegrain – and premium gluten-free – ingredients means we are looking to increase production capacity for Edme,” said managing director Mark Hodson.

“It will take some time for the application to be processed by the planners – no changes to current location and operations are imminent. We will keep our neighbours and the local community informed as and when there are any significant updates.”

According to the application, Edme has ruled out restructuring on its existing site because it is too constrained to develop a replacement factory. Describing the use of the existing buildings as “very inefficient”, Edme said they were costly to maintain and operate from.

“This results from inherent problems due to their age, condition and layout,” stated the application. “It is costly to install new technology into the existing buildings.”

Edme said the new location, at Horsley Cross, lay in “arguably the best cereal-growing region of Britain”, which would help to minimise food miles. The proposed site also had existing permissions to allow industrial development.

The new building would be 17m high, with around 10% rising to a maximum height of 21.7m to accommodate the necessary food production equipment. A number of 16m silos would sit along the east side of the building.