Left to right: Graham Wheeler (director of product and process) and James Lawson (managing director) with new production equipment installed at IPN Kinmel Park
Inspired Pet Nutrition is investing £250,000 at its Kinmel Park site, in Bodelwyddan, North Wales, home of its subsidiary, The Real Petfood Company.
The investment by IPN – the UK’s largest independent manufacturer of dry pet food – includes new production and robotic equipment, additional storage and racking and employee safety initiatives.
As part of the investment, additional mincing equipment is being installed that will enable the business to ‘take full advantage of growing consumer demand for paté-style wet dog food’. Previously, the business sourced this ingredient from a third party and so the investment gives the firm complete quality control over the whole manufacturing process.
Additional robotic equipment is also being installed to remove the manual stacking and wrapping of products. This will increase production efficiency by some 20% and the robots have the capacity to handle more than 200 trays per minute.
The firm says it is committed to growing sales from its current level of around £15m pa to more than £25m pa over the next two years. Warehouse space has been increased by more than 50%, which has enabled the company to enhance its pallet storage capacity by some 40% to 4,600 pallets.
Finally, following the appointment of James Angus as safety manager for IPN, several steps have been taken to further improve on-site safety and segregate pedestrians from vehicles. Additional collision-proof fencing has been installed along with marked walkways, and training sessions also organised to increase safety awareness.
James Lawson, managing director of The Real Petfood Company, said: “Our wet food tray products under the Wagg and Harringtons brands are performing extremely well, with customers appreciating our FreshCook technique, where ingredients are cooked just once to ensure the full nutritional value is maintained.
“Sales of Harringtons wet pet food are particularly strong and during the past 12 months have risen more than 30%. The continued investments enable us to increase production, achieve even greater levels of efficiency, store more product and, ultimately, supply super quality FreshCook products at lower cost.”