British farmers are benefitting from the increased global demand for breakfast cereals as leading food manufacturer The Jordans & Ryvita Company reveals exports have grown by 60 per cent in the last five years, reaching more than £90million.
The news comes as Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom visited the company’s Langford head office and production facilities on Wednesday.
The MP saw first-hand how the company has boosted exports and the visit also highlighted how the Defra-led Great British Food Unit can help food businesses tap into new international markets.
Using oats grown by British farmers, the household favourite now appears on breakfast tables in more than 70 countries, including Canada and the UAE, and in the last year the company has launched Dorset Cereals in Australia.
The factory in Langford employs 400 people and its popularity in the UK and abroad has led to further investment of £2.5million in the site over the past 12 months, with further investment of several million pounds planned for the coming year. In the last few months alone the company has recruited 23 new employees, bringing an additional boost to the local area.
Mrs Leadsom said: “There’s a growing demand around the globe for quality British food and it’s easy to see why – thanks to the hard work of our farmers and the ingenuity of our food businesses - we’ve built a reputation for being the best in quality, innovation and tradition.
“Through our Great British Food Unit I want to help more companies send their top quality food and drink around the globe.
“The Jordans & Ryvita Company is a wonderful example of a Great British brand flying the flag abroad and bringing a real boost to the local economy.”
Paul Murphy, CEO of Jordans & Ryvita, said: “I’m delighted to have the opportunity to show the Environment Secretary Jordan’s facilities in Biggleswade, where we employ almost 400 people and bake delicious wholegrain breakfast cereals and bars using locally grown and milled British grain.
“As we grow as a business, we’re selling more and more of our great products around the world and ensuring this continues is a big priority for us. This visit is acknowledgement of the hard work of all our team in making a successful British food business that can compete with the very best in the world.”
International sales now make up a third of The Jordan & Ryvita Company’s overall business, with the brand’s export value increasing from £57m to £91m over the last five years as a result of setting up dedicated in-market teams around the globe. This has boosted exports to key markets including France and Canada, and exports of its County Crisp range are now sold in more international markets than in the UK and Ireland.
Food and drink is one of the UK’s big export success stories, totalling £18 billion in 2015. These exports support an industry that, from farm to fork, contributes £100 billion to the UK economy.