An Innovating for Success grant of £30,000 from Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership (CLEP) is helping a business develop new food products and extend the life of existing ones.
Clare Holland, owner and manager of Flookburgh based Furness Fish, Poultry and Game says the grant met almost half of the total cost of creating an onsite bespoke research and development food laboratory and kitchen. It means the company can run trials for the production line and develop the shelf life of food using specialist equipment like a rational oven which can cook, steam and pasteurise food.
Clare explained: “Our best known product is our Morecambe Bay Potted Shrimps, a favourite of the Royal Family. Additionally, we also prepare and sell frozen and chilled fish, poultry and game including pheasant, mallard, partridge, rabbit, venison and grouse. All are distributed either wholesale or retail, through places like farm shops, delis, and food service outlets or online. We get lots of requests to come up with new recipes and new products and the line lab means that we can develop specialist products to meet this demand. We can also test these new products with visitors to our Flookburgh site, before making the move into commercial production.
“The food lab will help us to secure more contracts, move into new markets and accelerate business growth. In a very competitive marketplace you can’t stand still and need to look for new opportunities. This grant has really helped us to do that,” added Clare.
Jo Lappin, Chief Executive of the Cumbria LEP, said: “It’s great to see businesses like Clare’s using grant funding from the Innovating for Success programme to support their ambitions. We launched it to encourage small and medium sized businesses across Cumbria to invest in either innovating or decarbonising their business. I am really looking forward to seeing what new products Furness Fish, Poultry and Game will develop using their new facilities.”
The LEP’s ‘Innovating for Success’ grant, was launched in September 2022. It has resulted in dozens of businesses being awarded a share of a £1million grant to either support innovation or cut carbon emissions. Grants were split into two areas:
- Innovation: Maximum grants of up to £50,000 to part fund initiatives that turn new ideas into commercially viable and deliverable propositions.
- Carbon reduction: Maximum grants of up to £20,000 to part fund practical projects that will help businesses reduce energy usage or increase renewable energy production.
Independent economic assessment by the LEP has confirmed that over a 10-year period, the Innovating for Success investments will deliver an additional £37million of economic growth, create an additional 97 full time equivalent jobs and save over 4,160 tonnes of CO2.
For more information about CLEP’s grants and support for businesses visit https://www.thecumbrialep.co.uk/