Celebrations as £20m project nears end

THE CHAMPAGNE ?owed as bacon manufacturer, Direct Table, celebrated the near completion of its new £20 million factory in Bury St Edmunds.

To mark the occasion, Direct Table invited Bury Town Council Mayor, Cllr Mike Ames, to a ceremony marking the ?nal stages of the six month project. The company, one of the oldest bacon processors in the UK, was established in 1950 in Smith?eld Market, London. Now a subsidiary of Danish cooperative, Tican, the new £20 million, purpose-built factory claims it will be one of the most sophisticated bacon-processing plants in Europe. Managing Director, Tony Stanton, said: "We are really looking forward to moving into this factory. The new equipment will give us total control over production guaranteeing top quality bacon. It will also allow us to offer bespoke product for our customers."

During the of?cial topping off ceremony, the Mayor was taken on a guided tour around the new factory before joining with the team to have a celebratory drink and some bacon butties.

Opening in April, the new Bury St Edmunds factory will employ traditional methods of production, such as tank curing, using state-of-the art equipment - a powerful combination designed to ensure total control over the curing and processing stages.The construction project is being led by East Midlands-based food sector development specialists, Clegg Food Projects.

Managing Director, Steve Giltrap said: "We're delighted to have been involved in bringing this major project together."It was clear that Direct Table needed to have this new production facility up and running as quickly as possible and we will have completed the scheme in just 37 weeks. It is a perfect example of the way we have been able to use our expertise to the client's advantage.

"The new factory is being built as a replacement for Direct Table's previous site which was destroyed by a ?re in November 2004. Since then, the company has maintained its output by doubling production at its site in Cuf?ey, Hertfordshire