Two of the UK’s leading salad players, Florette and Jepco Marketing, have announced the creation of a new grower operation in East Anglia, which will bolster Florette’s national network of growers and further support UK horticulture.
Florette and Jepco have entered into a long term supply agreement to facilitate a multi-million pound investment on the Anglia Salads site in Frating, Essex.
This will involve the creation of a new business called Angflor Ltd that will this year develop an initial 10 hectares of state of the art multispan polytunnels for the cultivation of baby leaf, which currently has limited UK supply. Over the next three years, this development is envisioned to grow to an eventual 40 hectares.
The move will help Florette broaden supply channels and increase its ability to source key ingredients from the UK, in turn facilitating product innovation in line with the brand’s strategic and sustainable vision. Florette UK and Ireland Managing Director Neil Sanderson explains: “The vision that drives our category-leading business forward is to be the hallmark of the freshest and finest quality products, so it is vital that our grower network is as efficient and sustainable as possible to ensure that we can deliver this superior freshness and quality 100 per cent of the time. This development of protected cropping will allow all year round cultivation of materials we presently have to import, so not only meeting our commitment to reduce our environmental impact by reducing the distance leaf has to travel, but also increasing the freshness and security of our supplies.
“Florette, as part of the Agrial Group – an agricultural cooperative with roots in farming – is committed to encouraging and developing excellence in agricultural practice. Last year, we secured the LEAF Marque logo across our products, providing the guarantee that our business and the growers we use operate in an environmentally responsible way and the new Angflor operation will be a showcase for these standards.
“Angflor Ltd represents a new approach for Florette in the UK, one our sister businesses in Europe have developed over many years and we are really excited about the opportunities this will bring in terms of innovation, freshness and sustainability.”
Stuart Piccaver, Managing Director of Jepco Marketing, adds: “We are delighted to be entering into this new partnership with Florette; we have been a long standing supplier to the brand and look forward to working with them in this development.”
As part of the development, Patrick Bastow will join Angflor Ltd from Florette in the role of Managing Director.