Fife vegetable grower boosts turnover by 12.5% with after-tax profits of £1.7 million
Fife-based Kettle Produce says it has strengthened its position as one of the UK’s leading fresh produce suppliers during a very successful 40th anniversary year.
The year up to the end of May 2016 saw the company’s turnover increase by 12.5% to £113.6 million, with after-tax profits of £1.7 million.
Since it was founded in 1976, Kettle Produce has grown from a company of less than 200 staff, supplying only local wholesalers and greengrocers, to be a major supplier of fresh produce to a number of the UK’s leading retailers.
From relatively small beginnings, the firm has grown to become one of Fife’s largest private sector employers and during its 40th anniversary year was providing full time permanent jobs for over 1000 employees, the vast majority of whom live in the surrounding communities.
Turnover in 1976/77 was £185,000, in 1986/87 it was £6.1 million and in 2006/07 it was £73 million, up to £113.6 million in 2015/16.
In her yearly report, financial director Liz Waugh cited new sales lines, the availability of ample raw produce and the ability to exploit new and existing markets as key contributing factors to the firm’s success.
She said: “As is being seen across mainland Europe at the moment, growing conditions are variable and affected by weather. This can have a significant impact on operational costs and crop yield.
“However, this last financial year proved to be a favourable one for Kettle Produce Limited. We were able to benefit from ample good quality raw materials. In turn, this has allowed for efficient production practices which has further benefited trading. The past year was also exciting due to innovation and changing consumer trends which led to the introduction of many new sales lines.
“Constant adaptation to market conditions and investment in innovation have been cornerstones of our business practice throughout the years.
“This successful year also coincided with our 40th anniversary year. We are always keen to support the local community, and have been very active supporting mainly local charities and organisations during the past financial year. We recently partnered with the Fife Flyers ice-hockey team as a community partner to help spread the word about the importance of a healthy lifestyle and a nutritious diet to the Kingdom’s younger population.”
Looking forward and considering the financial year to date, Waugh added that “trading in the new year is currently ahead of budget and the Board is confident that our year end targets will be achieved.”