State-of-the-art machinery supports Beacon Foods’ exciting growth plan

February 2nd 2024

Beacon Foods, one of the UK’s leading suppliers of ingredients and ready-to-eat products, has greatly increased production volumes, capabilities and packaging options by investing in state-of-the-art machinery.

As part of an exciting £6 million expansion programme, the award-winning Brecon-based company has installed new kettles, a char griller spiral oven, Starfrost hybrid inline refrigeration tunnel and packaging equipment to supply sachets and dip pots.

Beacon Foods can now also offer UK produced, bespoke recipes of ready to eat IQF (individual quick frozen) char grilled and roasted vegetables, which are both proving to be extremely popular with customers.

The new machinery includes D C Norris 1,000 litre R2C Static Jet Cook kettle and cooling systems and an Afoflame char griller, Marlen International spiral oven and a Starforst hybrid inline IQF tunnel running on an C02 refrigeration plant.

“The D C Norris kettle we have installed has a capacity of 1,000 litres with load cells, Jet Cook, braising bar and a steam vapour recovery system,” said Beacon Foods chairman Edward Gough.

“We also have a D C Norris pump fill station and a DC Norris tumble chill for cooling the cooked product. It’s a great piece of kit as it has a good capacity throughput and, with the Jet Cook, allows us to speed up the whole cooking process and produce great tasting, high quality products.

“The way the system works allows us to pack the product hot and chill it down in the same bag, giving us a cost effective packaging solution and a product with very good microbiology and increased shelf life.”

The Afoflame char griller feeds into the Unitherm spiral oven before products are loaded into Starfrost hybrid inline tunnel. “This allows us to produce high volume, fantastic quality, char grilled roasted fruit and vegetables to customers’ specifications,” explained Edward.

“The finished product can be supplied either chilled or IQF and ready to eat, produced in a high risk environment ideal for food service, quick service restaurants and pizza manufacturers.”

The highly versatile Starfrost hybrid inline IQF tunnel can be adapted to freeze, chill, glaze harden and pre-cool a wide range of food products, including fruit and vegetables. The efficient tunnel freezer offers quick, cost effective freezing, low maintenance and consistent IQF.

To accommodate the new machinery, Beacon Foods has doubled both the size of its manufacturing and storage facilities - to 53,000 square feet - and its production capacity in preparation for planned business growth. 

With a workforce of 140 employees, the company supplies food manufacturers, food service, coffee shops, fast food chains and the travel and hospitality industries.

Established in 1993, Beacon Foods is the UK’s leading specialist producer of garlic, ginger and chili puree, roasted and char grilled vegetables and fruit ranges, relishes, chutneys, sauces and fruit compotes.

The ingredients go into literally thousands of products, including sandwiches, ready meals, pizzas, soups, drinks and desserts, which can be found on supermarket shelves, airlines, restaurant chains and coffee shops.