Small and medium-sized businesses looking for a supply route into Waitrose could benefit from a new distribution centre, set up by Hayden’s Bakeries.

Hayden’s – a major bakery, patisserie and desserts supplier into Waitrose, Marks & Spencer and Costa – has launched Hopton Distribution, based at the firm’s site in Devizes, Wiltshire. This features a picking operation that supplies Waitrose stores, with consolidated loads going into Waitrose depots.

“We want to market services to smaller third party suppliers who would otherwise not be able to get into Waitrose,” explained MD Paul Smith.

“Small manufacturers would never be able to get into the increasing number of Waitrose depots on an economical basis as they start up. We offer them, and some larger manufacturers, an ideal opportunity to get their products into one of the fastest-growing retailers in the country.”

Hayden’s is riding high having recently sold 13,000 Heston Blumenthal Royal Wedding trifles through Waitrose, at a premium price of £13.99.

“The product was a resounding success,” he said. “It was a fantastic opportunity for us and one that we are really set to take advantage of, looking at new products with Heston and his team for the future.”

Meanwhile, Smith revealed at parent Real Good Food Company’s AGM in London yesterday that sales were up 50% on 2008, as the firm continued its restructuring and investment programme, which includes plans for four modernised production lines and an increase in capacity.

Click here to view Real Good Food Company’s AGM statement.