Winterbotham Darby has opened a second plant-based factory to support its vegan Squeaky Bean brand.
The £5 million investment transforms its Milton Keynes-based production site, boosting distribution, product development and creating more than 100 jobs
The 48,000ft² facility will significantly boost Squeaky Bean’s production and distribution capabilities in the chilled plant-based market.
The company opened its first plant-based manufacturing site in September 2020. This second site represents the next stage in its plant-based journey.
Combined, both factories will have a 73,000ft² footprint. Already, the new Milton Keynes site has received a British Retail Consortium (BRC) A grade in its audit.
The installation of a griller in the factory will open up additional opportunities for new product lines to be created in the plant-based category where success is often founded in innovative new product development.
In the last 12 months, Squeaky Bean has launched 14 new products, and it is planned that the additional grilling capacity will build on the success of Squeaky Bean’s Chargrilled Mini Fillets.
“Demand for plant-based produce is increasing rapidly and in recent months our operations have been stretched to capacity. Opening our second plant-based factory will help us to fulfil both existing and new opportunities and is testament to our belief in the category,” said Tom Faulkner, head of plant-based at Winterbotham Darby.
“As UK consumers’ expectations of plant-based food increase, more people are discovering how Squeaky Bean Chargrilled Mini Fillets offer all the taste and texture of real chicken – but are made entirely from plants.
“Our additional production capacity will support strong demand for these products and allow us to introduce these and the rest of the range, to a bigger audience than ever before.”