Pet food manufacturer shows its appetite for expansion

Walker & Drake, a Barnsley-based premium dog food manufacturer, has completed a £900,000 investment in a new cold pressed production facility.

The company, which only began trading after the first lockdown of 2020, has seen massive growth in its cold pressed dog food sales.

Director David Taylor said: “Our cold pressed dog food is a premium product focused on gut health, and we are constantly talking with our customers to understand what they want for their dogs.

“The ability to develop new products in a dynamic fashion is fantastic, and the relationships we have already nurtured with our suppliers means we get the access to the best ingredients available at any time.

“The requirement for continuing growth driven expansion, and the increased complexities around exporting into Europe, meant we really had to take all production and packing in-house, and built something bespoke to us that future proofed our production capacity.”

Sales director Tim Matthews added: “We must be one of very few companies currently building a new pet food facility in the UK but we’re passionate about keeping our production here and having control over all aspects of it.

“Just like the ingredients we use in our products we’ve sourced the equipment, fabrication, and installation from UK companies wherever possible.

“In fact, apart from one item, all the major components, the design, and installation team are from within a 25 mile radius of our site.”

The company moved to larger premises last year to facilitate the extra space required for the new factory and warehousing.

Matthews said: “By starting with an empty space we’ve been able to create an efficient workflow from goods-in, through the production process to bagging, warehousing and then back out the door as finished product.”