Brownie maker triples capacity as it shifts to larger bakery

 A Leeds-based brownie business has moved into a new, bigger bakery in Morley, allowing it to triple production and hire more staff.

Brown & Blond is a handmade brownie company founded by George Welton in his mum’s kitchen in 2010 which now makes 60 to 70 different brownie flavours which are sold in cafes, delis, restaurants and independent retailers.

The business invested half a million pounds in the new bakery, which will allow it to more boost production from 1.5 million to five million units of its chocolate brownies per year. It has also increased its staff numbers from eight to 12 people.

Brown & Blonde has moved from a 1,200 sq ft site in Wortley. Welton and his wife Lucy got the keys to the Morley bakery in 2022 and it has taken 12 months of work to completely renovate the almost derelict building.

They have spent more than £350,000 on refurbishments and on fitting the property out with modern bakery equipment, including a high-tech Food Tools portioning machine which can quickly cut trays of brownies into individual portions without creating waste.

This piece of kit was funded by the Product, Process and Innovation (PAPI) fund via the University of York.

The business’s current turnover is £1.6m, amounting to a 10-fold increase since 2016.

George Welton said: “It’s taken us 12 months to renovate and fit out our new 6,500 sq ft bakery, and we’ve done a lot of it by hand while Lucy was pregnant with our second child, so to finally move in and start producing brownies is amazing.

“When these premises go full steam ahead it can make 100,000 brownies a week which will enable us to grow our stockists across the UK.

“My ambition is to build the wholesale businesses nationwide which will ultimately create more jobs and investment in the Leeds area.”

The company is also undergoing SALSA (Safe and Local Supplier Approval) accreditation.

SALSA is a food-safety standard to reflect both the legal requirements of producers and the enhanced expectations of “best practice” of professional food buyers. It is aimed at micro and small food and drink manufacturers.