Savoury pastry manufacturer Pukka is set to make a £5million pound investment to significantly enhance its manufacturing capacity and capability at its Syston bakery as it gears up for future growth.
The investment – announced as the company revealed annual figures showing turnover rising 6.8% to £52.7 million with profits of £3.6m – follows hot on the heels of a hugely successful year in which the business has cemented its position as the nation’s favourite hot pie brand.
“The last year has marked a significant step-change for the business, including the launch of a successful and bold new marketing and TV campaign, as well as investment in a new look and more environmentally friendly packaging,” explained Pukka’s CEO, Deborah Ewan. “So, it is very exciting to reinforce our growth and development with the announcement of further investment in our bakery.”
The move will reinforce Pukka’s position as a key employer in the region, added Ewan, with local people being at the heart of its success and future vision.
“Our TV advert, which is currently getting its second national airing following its launch in September last year, features everyday folk including employees and local fish and chip shop Rothley Fisheries in Leicestershire, as well as the nation’s love affair with Pukka pies to really shine a spotlight on the local area,” commented Ewan.
“People have always been at the core of the family-owned business,” continued Ewan, “so our campaign doesn’t just focus on the real people who sell and enjoy Pukka pies, but the people who make and bake them in Leicestershire too.”
Pukka has introduced new fully recyclable plastic free packaging across its chilled supermarket range. The packs are made from Forest Stewardship Council-certified cardboard and removing the plastic window saves 11.4 tonnes of plastic annually marking an important step towards achieving greater sustainability across the bakery.
Recent accolades include Pukka’s cheese, leek and potato pie picking up the award for Best New Vegan/Vegetarian product in The Grocer Magazine’s prestigious Product of the Year Awards, whilst CEO Deborah Ewan was honoured with the Leicestershire Live Business Executive of the Year Award for her contribution to local industry. And to round off the year Pukka’s new TV advert ‘The People’s Pie’ was named Top Campaign by The Grocer Magazine.
“We introduced some big changes last year, and the good news is that they have paid off with an increase in demand for our pies”, said Ewan. “But we’re not resting on our laurels. Our ambition is to put more pies on more plates and in order to do that we need to increase production in the bakery. That means a significant investment in upgrading machinery to ensure we are enhancing the capability and capacity of the bakery.”
“We’ve been making and baking pies for over 55 years and are continuously looking for ways to innovate and improve our business to make sure we are giving the people of Britain what they want. We are planning more innovation for 2020 and are confident that Pukka will continue to grow for many years to come,” concluded Ewan.