The hour-long show, aired at 8pm on Tuesday (August 9), showed the one-and-a-half mile-long journey dried haricot beans take on their way to becoming Heinz Baked Beanz. But the manufacturer’s secret recipe remained just that – secret.
BBC presenters Gregg Wallace and Cherry Healey visited the world’s biggest baked bean factory to find out how more than 3M tins of beans are made every day.
A Kraft Heinz spokesman said: “It was great to host MasterChef judge Gregg Wallace and presenter Cherry Healey at the world’s biggest baked bean factory near Wigan.
‘Secret of the spice recipe’
“Heinz Beanz are a much-loved part of the British diet and a firm favourite for breakfast, lunch and tea, hot or cold. In the BBC’s Inside the Factory programme we get to spill the beans on what makes them so special, but the secret of the spice recipe remains secret.”
Wallace helped unload 27t of dried haricot beans from North America during the programme. Viewers also discovered that the baked beans were not baked, and the top-secret spice recipe was known only by two people.
Elsewhere, viewers watched the circuitous journey of old baked bean tins as they moved through a recycling centre, and on to a steelworks. The tins were then transformed back into usable tins for Heinz.
Vitamin C content
Healey also discovered that a can of Beanz still had the same vitamin C content as fresh tomatoes, 14 months after its ‘best before’ date.
The programme is now available to watch on BBC iPlayer.
Meanwhile, Kellogg’s Manchester factory, the largest cereal factory in Europe, featured in an earlier episode of the hit TV show.
Don’t miss Food Manufacture’s ‘Me and my Factory’ video interview with Kellogg’s factory director Tony O’Brien.
Heinz Wigan factory – at a glance
- 3M tins of beans made a day
- World’s biggest baked bean factory
- Built 70 years ago