Cider maker Sandford Orchards invests £1.2m in processing

By Rod Addy contact

- Last updated on GMT

Butterfield: 'We are starting 2021 in a strong position'
Butterfield: 'We are starting 2021 in a strong position'

Related tags: Drinks, Finance, Technology & Automation

Cider producer Sandford Orchards has invested £1.2m into expanding its bottling and canning capabilities and implementing a new branding strategy ahead of launching new vintage ciders next month.

“While other businesses have retrenched during the last 12 months we have taken the opportunity to press forward with our expansion plans buoyed by an ever-growing number of consumers who are looking for an antidote to the standard commercial cider brands,”​ said chief cidermaker Barny Butterfield.

Butterfield said extensive market research through focus groups resulted in positive feedback on the taste and quality of the company's existing products. "This gave us the confidence to continue to invest in 2020 with the implementation of the rebrand and an expansion of our packaging capability to include setting up our own canning line for the first time.” 

“At the beginning of the first lockdown our usual canning business became too busy to provide us with the capacity that we needed. We knew that canned cider offered us a huge potential market, as it is not well served by quality craft ciders, so we took the plunge and invested in our own in-house canning line which delivers 3,500 cans of cider per hour.

Bottling machinery

"In the same period we also purchased new bottling machinery to allow us to meet the growing demand for our products and match our ambitious projections. This has tripled our bottling rate to an impressive 6,000 bottles an hour. Alongside this, we have also increased automation in our kegging line thus ensuring that we control the whole process from orchard to glass and have the ability to meet future demands.

"With our new branding and expanded capacity we are starting 2021 in a strong position to meet the needs of our fast growing fan base as well as those consumers wanting to trade up to something more authentic and better tasting."

Founded in 2002, independent, family-owned Sandford Orchards is based in mid-Devon in what it claims is the oldest working cider mill in the UK. It presses and ferments whole juice from locally grown bittersweet apples, ageing it to create its cider.

The company said its cider range includes session ciders and a selection of flavoured ciders and was soon to be joined by new vintage ciders in March.  

Related topics: Drinks, Operations, Packaging equipment

Related news

Show more

Related products

Food safety metal detector for brand protection

Food safety metal detector for brand protection

Thermo Fisher Scientific | 18-Sep-2020 | Technical / White Paper

White paper explores Selectscan, a food-grade metal detector foreign object detection technology for better food and consumer safety.

Hygienic design boosts quality and safety

Hygienic design boosts quality and safety

Minebea Intec | 16-Aug-2018 | Technical / White Paper

Avoiding food contamination and increasing product safety are key objectives of all food producers. It is critical to prevent any type of contamination...

Related suppliers

comments

Post your comment

We will not publish your email address on the website

These comments have not been moderated. You are encouraged to participate with comments that are relevant to our news stories. You should not post comments that are abusive, threatening, defamatory, misleading or invasive of privacy. For the full terms and conditions for commenting see clause 7 of our Terms and Conditions ‘Participating in Online Communities’. These terms may be updated from time to time, so please read them before posting a comment. Any comment that violates these terms may be removed in its entirety as we do not edit comments. If you wish to complain about a comment please use the "REPORT ABUSE" button or contact the editors.

Follow us

Products

View more

Webinars