£3.5 million state-of-the-art factory creates 75 jobs in North Yorkshire

Family-owned sausage business, HECK!, has created 75 jobs after opening a £3.5 million state-of-the-art factory in North Yorkshire, which produces more than 1200 sausages per minute.

HECK! is aiming to double its share in the premium sausage market after opening the new Bedale factory, with the firm also expecting to increase its turnover to £18 million this year.

The business made the investment with the support of a £2.35 million finance package from long standing banking partner, Lloyds Bank, which also provided a £832,000 hire purchase facility to help fund the facility’s new production lines.

Heck Video
Watch Andrew Keeble, Founder of HECK! talk about their growth journey.

Investing for fast growth

In just four years, co-founders Andrew and Debbie Keeble have grown the company into a multi-million-pound business. The firm’s fast growth has been recognised in the 2017 Lloyds Bank National Business Awards, with HECK! shortlisted in the scale-up business of the year category.

Rushi Sunak, MP for Richmond, Yorkshire also recently quoted HECK! as one of the best examples of agri-food businesses in the UK as part of the Pride and Provenance campaign, which demonstrates the value of Yorkshire’s farm to table supply chain.

“Our investment in the new factory will be key to securing HECK!’s place as Britain’s favourite sausage on the plate.”

Andrew Keeble, Co-founder of HECK!

“Innovation is at the heart of what we do and we’ve been busy taking the traditional British banger and giving it a healthier makeover. The vegetarian brand we launched with Waitrose last year has been a huge success, while our lower fat chicken and new vegan ranges are going down a storm too.”

“We’re one of the last independent businesses in the British sausage industry, selling nearly double the volume of our closest competitor. Lloyds Bank has been an important partner in helping us to grow further and continue to innovate.”

Ian Smellie, relationship director at Lloyds Bank, said: “Our latest food and drink report found that producers in the sector are optimistic with an appetite for expansion. After opening the new factory, HECK! is in an excellent position to exceed growth expectations for food and drink firms over the next five years.”

“It’s ambitious, and innovative producers like HECK! that are creating jobs and investing in growing young talent, and helping Britain’s food and drink sector to prosper.”

Ian Smellie, Relationship Director at Lloyds Bank

Building for the future

After considering a number of potential sites, a decision was made to develop an agricultural setting, which had historic connections to the Keeble family and allowed the production building and supporting facilities to be designed in accordance with the brief and the HECK! ethos.

The prominent location, alongside the A1M, required a design that is functional, compliant, sustainable and also capable of providing visual brand reinforcements.

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