Kirsty's creates 18 jobs in net zero investment

By Gwen Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

Kirtsy's created 18 new jobs and secured a retail contract thanks to help from Manufacturing Growth Programme
Kirtsy's created 18 new jobs and secured a retail contract thanks to help from Manufacturing Growth Programme

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Free-from food firm Kirsty’s has created 18 new jobs and secured a major retail contract with the support from the Manufacturing Growth Programme.

The company is working towards being net zero by 2050, a key requirement of one of its largest retail customers. Having a plan to reach net zero has helped safeguard the jobs of Kirsty’s 49 staff, including 18 new recruits brought on to help support its expansion.

Kirsty’s reached out to MGP to part-fund an environmental audit and bring in a specialist consultant that was experienced in complex food manufacturing and could support its carbon reporting and help it put in place its Net Zero plan.

Path to net zero

“Our retail customer announced in January this year that it wanted all suppliers to have a plan in place by the end of the year to get to Net Zero by 2050,”​ explained Natalie Parker, marketing director for Kirsty’s. “We’ve only been manufacturing our own products in Harrogate for two years, so as a small SME this was a massive challenge, and we needed some external assistance.”

“This is where the Manufacturing Growth Programme came into play and we found the adviser very easy to work with, very understanding of the challenges of our business and very keen to put us in touch with experts and funding that made a real difference.”

The Manufacturing Growth Programme is currently the UK’s largest and leading business support programme for SME manufacturers.

Nationwide initiative 

Designed and delivered by Oxford Innovation Advice and funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the initiative has secured nearly £15m in grants for 4,300 companies over the last three years, creating and safeguarding over 10,000 jobs in the process.

Meanwhile, North Devon-based cheese and butter wholesaler Millbrook Dairy has secured a £4m funding package from Santander UK​ to help support its international expansion plans.

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