Smaller bakeries in a whole world of pain in 2019

Since the beginning of this year we have seen small wholesale bakeries closing down or going bust due to the economic position we find ourselves in. Manchester has lost 3 wholesale bakers and Liverpool has lost 1.These were good businesses that were family run and operated for many years before closing.

How can this have happened?

Several factors for this is the ongoing increases in wages each April. I agree that a fair pay is the minimum any worker should receive for a fair days pay, but bakeries cannot seem to pass on these extra costs to their customers as they just won’t accept as they too are in the same boat as everyone else. The pension scheme that the government added a further burden to businesses already trying to go about their day to day operations.

What can we do?

Really? the answer is support your local bakery or business in any case. If your £1 is spent in the shop it stays in the community. We don’t want to see shops closing and bakeries failing just because the supermarket is cheaper.

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Well, after 10 years at our old site in Eccles we have made the move away to a new site less than 3 miles away in Worsley, Manchester. Having manufactured and supplied some of the biggest retail supermarkets and discounters we made the decision to stop baking for them. The prices we were being paid did not make it worthwhile. I accept that is the way of the world and we ourselves do shop at some of these stores and want good value but if you can’t afford to sell at the low prices viably then it’s time to give up.

On a brighter note we are really happy with our new site in Worsley and all the staff are happy with the project of relocating and starting fresh. The new site is approx 4,000sq ft smaller overall, but with the offices now upstairs it still leaves the despatch area larger than the previous site. The new signage is done and looks a lot smarter as we still use our local trading name Quayside Bakery. The main reason for moving was to reduce costs in rent and rates of course.

view of the boardroom

Site managers desk

general open plan

The Beast from the East, a week in the Bakery industry to forget!

My thoughts on this tough week in our business


Everyone of our staff have been amazing this last week in getting into work. I would personally like to thank all them. Some ares of the North have been particularly bad, Newcastle and Carlisle to name a few. The earlier part of the week saw some major disruption to our operations up there. Temperatures at night have been freezing and the night shifts have gone the extra mile working in those conditions.

Thursday onwards saw Caernarfon depot suffer in parts and we had a fantastic response with the team in there, so well done again to all of you.

The temperatures for everyone has been really cold and the phones and emails have kept us all very busy in planning what was coming into us for distribution. We prioritised the NHS accounts first as we saw those accounts obviously as very vital, given the work the hospital staff do for all of us. Our customers have been very understanding as well.


Our suppliers have been immense too and pulled out all the stops to ensure that we got our bread delivered into us for distribution.

So thank you again for all your efforts and hopefully this time next week the weather will be a little kinder.

Championing great value bread

Coultons – we’re Championing a great value for money loaf for the convenience sector.

Just a few years ago, the Great British public were a very brand conscious bunch, but things have changed, changed quickly and they continue to do so and none more so than in the category of food.

Since the surge in growth of discounters in the UK, we have as a nation become accustomed to shopping in stores that carry virtually no well-known brands what-so-ever.  This has created a cultural change in shopping habits across the high-street and supermarkets as consumers are more willing to be curious and explore what is on offer.  Retailers have upgraded own-label offerings, introduced sub-brands to compete with the discounters creating a surge in growth of private label across categories.

At Coultons Bread Limited, we’re embracing this with our very own brands that can champion great quality and competitiveness for retail convenience.  Our range of 800g & 700g retail loaves in Bakestone, Happy Bread or Hethertons branding present opportunities for the convenience sector to compete with the supermarkets by offering a quality loaf that can compete with the buying power of those businesses.



Our heart and soul are with the convenience sector, we don’t supply the supermarkets and our brands therefore remain exclusive to the convenience retail sector and catering services.

Our brands represent great value for money and in terms of quality, we produce them to exacting standards that match those of the high street brands.

Within the sliced bread sector, private label is the fastest growing area of the market driven by the supermarkets.  Our positioning at Coultons is clear.  We’ll keep our range simple and focus on the core SKUs of White, Wholemeal & White&Wholemeal (we call it Brite – it’s a little bit of Brown and a little bit of White).  We’ll offer these exclusively for the retail convenience sector at comparable quality to the major brands and at a price that will compete with the supermarkets.


We are well and truly on your side.  We’re keeping one step ahead of the market trends, so you can rely on us to deliver for the market that we solely represent.  We’re Championing Great Value & Quality in Convenience Retail.

VIDEO: Roberts Bakery reveals its next steps

Roberts Bakery has revealed its plans for the business, including the roll out of more ‘innovative’ NPD in May 2018, following a major relaunch in S… Visit today for more information!

Source: VIDEO: Roberts Bakery reveals its next steps

Cost of Bread on the Rise again!

kingsmill logo


Allied Bakeries have announced this week that they are putting the price of their bread up again to grocers. This follows large financial losses in the last trading year. We don’t know yet what the increases are likely to be.



Warburtons who dd not put their prices up earlier this year will be putting their price up in January 2018.



Hovis have not made announcements in the press what their intentions are yet.



High tea: Roberts Bakery to hold pop-up event 100ft in the air



Roberts Bakery is to host ‘high tea’ in a pop-up restaurant suspended above Manchester’s Etihad Stadium. For one day only, the Cheshire-based fami… Visit today for more information!

Source: High tea: Roberts Bakery to hold pop-up event 100ft in the air