Loaf, which is based in Farnham, Surrey, wants to tap into the growing national interest in baking by extending its product range, working with suppliers that support its commitment to high quality, sustainable ingredients.
Husband and wife team Simon and Peta Jarman bought the first of their bakeries six years ago. Responding to the growing awareness around food intolerances and allergies The Jarmans have developed a selection of gluten free brownies and muffins. Spelt and honey loaves have also proved popular.
Since then the business has expanded with two more bakeries and now employs 43 staff across the three sites.
The Jarmans wanted to create greater consistency in the savoury products, which have until now been produced across all three Loaf outlets, so approached Anthony Holt, their local NatWest Relationship Manager, for funding for a purpose-designed bake-house close to the Ridgway site.
They worked closely with Lombard, NatWest’s asset finance arm, for additional funding for new ovens and equipment.
Centralising production by bringing their skilled bakers under one roof has created more efficiencies across the business, ensuring a consistent product, albeit still handmade to traditional recipes.
New revenue stream
The additional capacity created by the bespoke bake-house means that Loaf can now supply to other businesses including restaurants, gastro pubs and garden centres, opening up a brand new revenue stream. Two part-time delivery drivers have been employed, together with a new cake-maker, and the Jarmans are currently planning on employing an apprentice at the bake-house
Simon Jarman said: “The support from NatWest and Lombard has really boosted our production capacity across the stores and certainly raises our brand profile locally. We’ll continue to invest more in developing our gluten and wheat-free range as well as our cake offer. We’ve relied on Anthony’s guidance throughout this process, ensuring that we grow at a rate that is right for the business, our staff, our customers and our family.”