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Re-opening of Brace's Croespenmaen Site

21 December 2016

Brace’s Bakery are to reopen Croespenmaen site after a management shake-up.

The family-run firm closed the 60,000 sq ft production facility in February 2016, because of tough market conditions in the sliced-bread sector.

Director, Jonathan Brace said: “We’ve had a bit of a management reshuffle and some of the top people have gone. My brother Mark and myself, saw this as an opportunity to grab hold of the reins a little bit.

“We weren’t growing or progressing, so we put a bit more effort into the business to find more business.

“Our two other sites at Pen-y-fan and Rogerstone are very full and we felt we needed to reinvigorate the Croespenmaen site to get it back up and running.”

Brace’s previously considered selling the site, but its state-of-the-art equipment meant it was better to keep hold of it.

The move follows a diversification for the business from sliced bread into the food service sector, supplying products to sandwich makers.

Managing Director, Mark Brace, said: “I am very excited about the future, and while the market place is changing rapidly, we are seeing the efforts of our labour starting to bear fruit.

“We see this as an opportunity to refocus our business and look carefully at the changing market trends and invent a few of our own, to give a long term sustainable future to our loyal work force, who have performed admirably in these difficult business and market conditions.”

Jonathan Brace said the firm hoped to gradually add to its current 280-strong workforce by increasing output at Croespenmaen, which is capable of baking around 6,500 loaves an hour with its two production lines.

He added: “Over the last 12 to 18 months, our staff have been very good and very understanding about our issues. Without them we haven’t got a business – it is about the people we employ.

The 114-year-old bakery was on course for 15% growth this year and will reopen the site near Crumlin to relieve pressure at its bakeries in Rogerstone and Pen-y-fan.

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