Bakery hotplate firm secures £1m order from USA

Manufacturer of hotplate equipment, Sugden Limited, has secured a deal worth £1m to sell its muffin-making equipment to America. 

The hotplate manufacturer, based in Barrowford, Lancashire, has a new partnership with AMF Bakery Systems of Virginia. Sugden said of the deal: “Working together, the companies can supply bakeries around the world with complete production lines capable of turning out up to 26,000 English muffins an hour.”

Sugden produces hotplates used to make traditional savouries such as crumpets, pancakes, potato cakes and English muffins.

Following the sudden death of its co-founder Barry Mulholland last year, Sugden was acquired by Baldwin Engineering Holdings of Heywood. Chris Baldwin, who is now managing director of both companies, has focused on driving export sales and has said that he “expects to triple Sugden’s turnover in the year ahead”.

Export focus

He added: “Sugden had an international reputation and occasional big orders, but turnover was up and down. We knew that we could improve this dramatically by looking to export markets.

“The partnership with AMF has given us access to bakeries throughout the USA and Asia Pacific. This year we have been to the US and Australia twice, as well as China and Malaysia, to meet potential customers. We expect exports will represent between 30% and 60% of our future business so are extremely important to our growth.”

The company has also boosted orders in the UK with the launch of its new multiplant system, which allows greater flexibility in crumpet and pancake manufacturing.

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