Essex-based cake and dessert manufacturer Raven Patisserie has moved to a new purpose-built production site in Witham.

The new premises have been designed to accommodate its "ambitious sales targets for its patisserie and bakery products", according to the firm.

Operations director Daren McGrath said the business plans to achieve the growth through "new markets and new business from a widening geographical area".

A subsidiary brand of Wilkin & Sons, Raven Patisserie, previously located in Braintree, has grown steadily over the last couple of years. Wilkin & Sons, known for manufacturing Tiptree fruit conserves, acquired cakes, traybake and bar manufacturer Passionately Cakes in 2003. Passionately then joined forces with Raven Catering, to form Raven Patisserie in 2005.

"Raven has grown from strength to strength. We out-grew our premises in Braintree within two-and-a-half years," said McGrath. "This site in Witham is over 17,000sq ft and is large enough to handle the next phase of our growth."

The company, which currently employs 23 staff, supplies individually wrapped cakes, ambient bars and slices, luxury round cakes and traybakes to a number of tea rooms and restaurants across the UK.

Passionately Cakes is now the brand name for the company’s counterline ’grab and go’ bars.