Based in Diggle, Grandpa Greene’s flagship canal-side ice cream manufacturing and distribution facility is built on a family tradition of ice cream production that stretches back to the 1920s.
Managed by the Oldham Business Awards Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2014, Rick Scholes, with his sister Lizzie and mother Carole, Grandpa Greene’s uses local ingredients to supply outlets including farm shops, delicatessens and restaurants.
Employing artisan techniques, the company has developed a range of creative, and occasionally eccentric, ice cream flavours which include crème fraîche, beetroot, and beans on toast.
The business needed help expanding in order to take advantage of the growing market for artisan ice cream.
Rick contacted the Hub and was introduced to growth advisor Mick Hadfield, who has considerable previous experience working within food manufacturing. He began working with Rick to develop a new sales and marketing strategy for the business.
The company also took part in the Hub’s Recipe for Success programme, a series of workshops designed to give food and drink manufacturers the skills and confidence they need to break into new markets, as well as the opportunity to pitch their products to retailers.
Working with the Hub has brought the business immediate dividends and new contracts with El Capo in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, Pier 8 in Salford Quays and Notcutts Garden Centre in Ashton. Rick has also secured contracts with food distributors Bray Foods and pub chain Holme Valley Inns Group and the company has launched a new mobile trailer for events.
And in order to meet this new level of demand, Grandpa Greene’s has recruited two new chefs and invested in state of the art kitchen equipment.
Rick explains: “The Business Growth Hub put us in touch with major food service providers, allowing us to expand our reach considerably. Our new client contracts have been a massive step in re-positioning Grandpa Greene’s in this highly competitive market. Now, with negotiations ongoing, we can look forward to getting our unique, handmade ice cream in front of a much wider audience.”
And Mick adds: “The demand for artisan, bespoke foods is growing and so too is the opportunity for SMEs to make their mark in the luxury produce sector. Grandpa Greene’s is an excellent example of a local, passionate family-owned business that has carefully refined its product over almost 100 years.”
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