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Start up and small food producers get a boost

09 November 2012

Food and drink producers eager to expand their businesses can take advantage of a new TASTER Package at Shropshire Food Enterprise Centre launched today by Shropshire Council.

Shropshire Food Enterprise Centre, on Battlefield Enterprise Park, Shrewsbury, is managed by food group HEART of ENGLAND fine foods (HEFF) on behalf of the Council and includes state of the art food production facilities.

As part of Shropshire Council’s Economic Growth Strategy it has launched a TASTER Package on a number of the units allowing producers to try the facilities at a reduced rate.

Councillor Mike Owen Portfolio Holder for Economic Growth and Prosperity said: “Food and drink production is a major contributor to the Shropshire economy and is recognised as a key sector in the Council's Economic Growth Strategy.

“We appreciate that start up or small businesses sometimes need a helping held to take the next step in their development; the new TASTER Package available to food businesses at the Shropshire Food Enterprise Centre, is just one way we are providing support.”

This package is aimed at start up businesses or small producers with a vision to grow from the domestic kitchen to experience a food grade ready unit on an all inclusive cost basis.

Businesses signing up before 1 February 2013 will be able to take advantage of a 1,500sq ft unit for six to nine months with all rates included for just £795 + VAT. Following this period, producers then have the option to go full steam ahead with their businesses and retain their unit for three years under a new agreement with Shropshire Council.

HEFF Chief Executive Karen Davies said: “We are delighted to announce the launch of the TASTER package, which enables small businesses to try out the state of the art production facilities before committing to a longer lease. The all inclusive cost will help businesses to budget effectively which is vital to any new or growing business.”

Ivan Watkiss of Coopers Gourmet Sausage Rolls is at tenant at Shropshire Food Enterprise Centre and has seen massive business growth resulting in him upgrading to a large unit to keep up with demand and explore new markets.

He said: “The units exceed expectation, everything is in place for you to move straight in so you can concentrate on your products and service straight away. It’s also great to be surrounded by like minded people and to have the support of HEART of ENGLAND fine foods.”

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