Welsh business Village Bakery is moving into new export markets six months after a devastating fire.
All staff escaped uninjured, but the firm’s offices, a bakery, its Baking Academy and development kitchen were destroyed in the blaze in Wrexham last August. The company is now building a 210,000 sq ft facility to replace the one lost in the blaze.
More recently, the company has secured new business in in Iceland, Malta and Cyprus for batch loaves, rolls, pancakes, crumpets and Welsh Cakes, and hopes to secure major contracts in southern Europe and America.
Village Bakery managing director Robin Jones said orders for other products were also rolling in because wholesale customers had been impressed by the way the company had reacted to the disaster.
“The fire obviously did set us back a bit, hence why we’re only launching now in Iceland, Malta and Cyprus, but we’re not dwelling on that and feeling sorry for ourselves,” he stated.
Jones added that export was an area he was keen to grow, and he hoped to be supplying a “very large” customer in southern Europe by the summer.
“We deal with all the major retailers in the UK now and also supply their overseas stores in places like Singapore, Hong Kong and the Middle East.”
The company has also had interest from the US for its Welsh cakes, which it hoped to start supplying in July.
“What we’re doing now is a natural progression – the brilliant thing about exporting is that there’s a big world out there and there is huge potential,” said Jones. “The perception of British products is excellent and then, when you add in the Village Bakery’s Welsh heritage, it just adds further provenance to the story.”
Since the fire, the company has installed a new bagel line and is selling bagels in 600 of a major retailer’s stores across the UK.
It has stated the new bakery, to be built in Ash Road on Wrexham Industrial Estate, will be four times the size of the one it replaces, and will be the most modern in Europe.