Gluten Free Kitchen secures six-figure loan, creates five jobs

By William Dodds

- Last updated on GMT

Sue Fleming founded The Gluten Free Kitchen in 2005. Credit: FW Capital and The Gluten Free Kitchen
Sue Fleming founded The Gluten Free Kitchen in 2005. Credit: FW Capital and The Gluten Free Kitchen

Related tags Investment

North Yorkshire-based food manufacturer The Gluten Free Kitchen has secured new investment as it seeks to capitalise on the growing market for free-from products.

FW Capital Debt Finance, which forms part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF), provided the six-figure loan (the exact amount remains undisclosed) to assist the business with its ambitious growth plans and the creation of five new jobs.

Founded in 2005 by Sue Fleming, The Gluten Free Kitchen was created in order to offer tasty options to people that are gluten intolerant. Fleming began by experimenting with a series of recipes, before creating an e-commerce platform to sell the dishes online.

A selection of the brand’s products are now stocked by Waitrose and Ocado, as well as with a selection of independent retailers and farm shops across the UK. Its product range includes free-from cakes, puddings and savoury pies.

Original located in the village of Aysgarth, North Yorkshire, The Gluten Free Kitchen moved into a larger production facility in Leyburn after an initial period of growth. With demand continuing to increase, Fleming has plans in place to move to a new premises in Leyburn Business Park.

‘Excited to create more jobs’

Commenting on the new investment and her plans for the future, Fleming said: “Our free from ethos is centred around flavour and quality. I’m proud to have created a delicious range of foods that doesn’t compromise on flavour. The increased demand for our product ranges means we need more staff who will also be part of our expansion journey into larger premises. We’re fit for bursting at the moment and are excited to be creating more jobs. Without the support of Keith Charlton and Lindsey McMenamin at FW Capital we wouldn’t be able to do this.”

Meanwhile, McMenamin, portfolio manager at FW Capital, added: “Sue’s passion for the business is evident and she has created a successful and innovative brand which provides consumers with gluten intolerance with a wide variety of choice.

"The Gluten Free Kitchen is today a prominent brand serving the UK coeliac community. With demand for free from products rising, Sue needed further working capital to support the creation of new jobs and the expansion of the business. I’m thrilled to be part of this and help The Gluten Free Kitchen with their next stage of development.”

The NPIF project is supported by the European Union, taking funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank. The initial NPIF phase has now ended, with the British Business Bank set to launch a second round in March 2024.

In other news, Food Manufacture rounds up the latest appointments announced by drinks giant Britvic and temperature-controlled van specialist CoolKit.

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