An innovative sandwich specialist will stick with its policy of dealing with local suppliers despite moving into a factory that will treble the size of the business.
On A Roll Sandwich Company was the brainchild of expert chef James Stoddart back in 2007.
Now, with almost seven million sandwiches rolling off the production line on an annual basis, the firm has now moved into its 35,000 sq ft unit close to its previous home at Riverside Park Industrial Estate.
On A Roll’s £3m investment earlier this year was expected to create 100 new jobs.
But despite the rapid growth of On A Roll, managing director James Stoddart insists he will not alter his supply chain to the detriment of the local economy.
James said: “It could be cheaper and perhaps more convenient for us if we got involved with suppliers from elsewhere in the UK.
“But we have worked with the likes of QFS and Morgan’s Bakery here in Middlesbrough since day one, and despite the fact we have enjoyed growth, that is not something we intend to move away from.
“Over the years, we have built up excellent relationships with local suppliers. It is very personal, you know exactly who you are dealing with and you place a trust in them to get the best deal they possibly can for you.
“Each supplier has its own specialist market, they are continually monitoring costs and keeping us up to date with what is going on.
“It is something I feel very strongly about, and I also feel it is vitally important to keep local money within the local economy.”
As well as the excitement of moving into the new premises, the On A Roll team had further reason to celebrate earlier this month when it was recognised at the prestigious Made in the North East Awards ceremony.
The firm won Food & Drink Manufacturer of the Year, at the awards which also recognised leaders in technology, export, innovation and apprenticeships/training.
The firm was created by James and his wife Helen, and now operates seven days a week with the current 130-strong workforce producing up to 150,000 sandwiches from three production lines each week.