Further expansion of gourmet burger company

Gourmet burger company Muddy Boots is to triple its listing with Waitrose for the second year in a row, as well as  moving its production and expanding its supplier-base due to increase demand.

The Worcestershire-based company, which was started by husband and wife team Roland and Miranda Ballard in 2008, will supply a further 55 stores across the country from next Thursday (3 May), taking its listing up to 90 stores.

Waitrose meat buyer Thomas Richardson said: “We are happy to help Muddy boots grow and to increase their store listings again this summer. Their brand and commitment to quality food is in keeping with Waitrose own ethos and we’re pleased that our shoppers agree.”

The company is also moving its processing to Bromsgrove-based company Midland Foods at the end of April, as well as expanding its wholesale supply base for non-Waitrose contracts. signing a new contract with Mathers (Inverurie) Ltd.

Miranda Ballard said that while the Waitrose contract will still be sourced from Dovecourt, Muddy Boots wanted to build its wholesale supply of boned trim British Aberdeen Angus beef as output has risen to more than 2 tonnes a week. She said that the combination to increase supply and changing manufacturer has proved very timely, adding that Mid Shires food had been “brilliant”.

She said: “We were beginning to outgrow our last place, and at the same time, Mid Shires was changing its focus to game. So it’s all starting to fall into place.”

The move will bring processing nearer to the company’s distributors, Oakland International Ltd, for the Budgens and Ocado contracts and the new Redditch depot of Langdons Industries Ltd.  

She said: “The new site will help us deliver in time for consolidated picking at Oakland (rather than just cross dock pallets every time), saving us a few pence a unit in some cases. Oakland are great for consolidated picking for small chilled companies like us.”

Before Easter Muddy Boots announced a new contract to supply membership-only wholesaler Costco with a bespoke 8-pack burger pack of caramelised red onion and mozzarella Aberdeen Angus burgers, alongside existing contracts with Ocado, Budgens, Midcounties Cooperative Foods, and a number of independent retailers and restaurants.

The company originally made its burgers by hand but after winning the initial contract to supply 10 Waitrose stores after taking part in BBC One’s High Street Dream, it outsourced production to a small processing firm, moving to Mid Shires Foods in Shropshire in April 2010.