How Growth Works is helping The Turmeric Co. 10x their production
The challenge: Increasing production required significant investment in a new site and upgraded equipment
The Turmeric Co. produces turmeric-based shot drinks, popular with top athletes and people from all walks of life. Based on a family recipe developed by the father of founder and CEO Thomas Robson-Kanu, the shots can help boost immunity, energy and recovery.
With demand rocketing, Thomas and his team have ambitious plans to increase their product range and launch the brand internationally.
Yet with 90% of the production process carried out manually, The Turmeric Co. had hit an upper limit of producing 250,000-300,000 shots per month. The bottling process alone took 16 hours of labour to fill and cap 5,000 shot bottles. Thomas recalls:
“We had continued to incrementally produce more just through becoming really efficient. But we reached a point where we physically couldn’t produce any more at our existing site, due to space.”
To scale up production and grow the business, The Turmeric Co. needed bigger premises and upgraded manufacturing equipment to automate the production process. This would enable them to produce more shots, faster, with far less manual labour and lower costs.
But building and moving to a new production and distribution facility would require a significant investment of money, time and effort.
The solution: Business grants, training and network-building via Growth Works
Having identified a suitable new site in Cambridgeshire, Thomas was introduced to Growth Works by Ann Wardle at Fenland Council. “On moving into the area, we found a really strong existing business community and support infrastructure.”
The Turmeric Co. successfully accessed grant funding to help fit out their new production facility. This included a state-of-the-art ventilated high-care internal production unit, cold store refrigeration able to hold up to 1.5 million of their shot bottles, and a water supply and waste system.
“Working with Growth Works has reduced the amount of work required to get to the end point of commissioning a new manufacturing and distribution facility. By supporting us with accessing funding, they helped us move our production 100 miles and upscale our capacity, which has also reduced our costs.”
As well as signposting grant funding, and providing business advice and introductions, Growth Works advisor Rosa also flagged up available courses led by experts. The Turmeric Co. employees have since attended several of these.
“There are really good courses available – everything from sales to management to operations to digital,” Thomas says. “Upskilling your team is a really valuable attribute in business, and a core part of what we do. So it was great to be able to tap into this training.”
“Growth Works have been absolutely fantastic. They’ve supported us with everything from funding, to training, to connecting us with other skilled industries and businesses within our industry. We’ve been really impressed with their support.”
The results: On track for 10x increased production and 3x more jobs
Once the new production facility is fully up and running, by mid-2022, The Turmeric Co. will be able to produce 2.5 million turmeric shots per month. This is ten times more than at their old site.
The new, fully-automated bottling line can bottle anywhere between 3,000-5,000 shots in a single hour. “All you have to do is connect the fresh finished product, supply the bottles and caps, and off it goes,” Thomas explains.
“Previously, bottling this amount would take four people working for 16 hours total. Now, this fully-automated machine produces the same output in just one hour.”
Even given the reduction in manual labour, the huge increase in production means The Turmeric Co. will need to expand its current workforce of around 30 people.
“I anticipate that within 3-5 years we’ll be employing over 100 people quite comfortably, depending on how quickly we grow. We’re going to create a number of local jobs, and hopefully support the local community through bringing a thriving and growing business to the area.”
Overall, Thomas and his team have found their engagement with Growth Works extremely positive.
“Growth Works’ support has reduced our workload, given us cost savings and efficiencies, and allowed us to connect with like-minded individuals and organisations within the area. Working with Growth Works has been an undoubted success.”
As The Turmeric Co. enter an exciting phase of new product development and expansion, they plan to continue accessing Growth Works’ support. This includes opportunities from skills training to support for employing new people.
“The best thing about Growth Works is their professionalism and willingness to support. They’re really passionate about supporting local businesses and SMEs to expand and grow, aligned with our international ambitions. And they’re just really, really good people – that’s the best way to describe it.”
Could your business benefit from expert support and funding to help you unlock further growth? Check your eligibility and tell us about your growth plans. Or get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org
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