April 17, 2024

Village Bakery Pancakes; Simon Thorpe Operations director, Ashley Dawson;Bakery Manager and Emma Thomas;Technical Manager. Picture Mandy Jones

A fast growing bakery is set to more than triple the amount it exports.

Overseas sales at the Jones Village Bakery in Wrexham are due to increase from £1.5 million last year to £5 million in 2023.

The family firm’s award-winning products are already staple lines for most of the best known supermarkets in the UK.

The company, which has several bakeries on Wrexham Industrial Estate and another in Minera on the outskirts of the town, employs 800 people.

According to managing director Robin Jones, they are now reaping the rewards of a major investment programme over recent years.

Two years ago they opened a new 140,000 sq ft super bakery which also houses the company’s HQ, their Baking Academy and Innovation Centre.

Earlier this year they installed a new £2 million pancake production line – reckoned to be one of the biggest in the world – that’s created 20 new jobs.

It will enable them to increase production to 75 million pancakes a year and give them the flexibility to make a range of different pancakes, from a small Scotch pancake to a large American style buttermilk pancake measuring seven inches across.

As a result, they are able to cater for surging demand in the UK and from Europe, particularly France Belgium and Holland.

The company has also landed a contract to supply bakery products to a large German retailer.

All of this is on top of supplying a worldwide network of around 200 M&S stores with crumpets, scones, pancakes, bagels, rolls, Welsh Cakes and pikelets.

Robin Jones said: “We send products to anywhere in the world where there is an M&S franchise, including Hong Kong, Singapore, the Middle East and India as well as the stores in Europe.

“We have a similar arrangement with the Waitrose stores in the Middle East and that’s something we have done for about three or four years.

He added: “Strategically, we have taken the decision to grow the export market and we have just taken on a senior national account manager who is fluent in French and German.

“Her role will include actively pursue those markets with pancakes, crumpets and other bakery products.

“We are continuing to grow and we are getting more and more enquiries so that is creating real momentum in terms of exports alongside our continued growth with our UK customers.

“Innovation is at the heart of our expansion both in the UK and abroad because our brilliant new product development team are driving the growing appetite for our products.

“I think the secret of our success is our ability to make high quality products in volume whilst staying true to our roots as craft bakers.”

“Our quest for improvement is relentless. We’re our own biggest critics and we’re always trying to do that little bit better.”