Oaklands Farm Eggs is targeting growth in its home country, with an ambitious goal to list “premium Welsh eggs” in every Welsh store, starting with a new supply deal with Lidl.
Commercial director Elwyn Griffiths, who runs the business in partnership with brother Gareth, said he wanted to give Welsh consumers the choice to buy eggs that have been both produced and packed in Wales. The firm also has a desire to boost the Welsh economy.
He added that the in-Wales retail side of the business was showing growth, though the majority of Oakland’s customers were in the UK food service sector.
The new deal with Lidl will offer customers branded Welsh organic, free-range eggs, as well as medium and large Welsh eggs.
Oaklands Farm Eggs is a previous recipient of the Farmers Weekly Poultry Farmer of the Year award.
The business packs more than 1m eggs a day at its three-year-old, £5m facility in Ruabon, north Wales, and almost a quarter of its £75m annual turnover is generated in Wales. “We are a Welsh family and we wanted to establish a Welsh packing station to add value to what is a premium product and support Welsh producers,” said Mr Griffiths.
He added: “We are building the infrastructure to create a whole supply chain that delivers a premium Welsh product to the marketplace with low food miles and the extra provenance today’s consumer demands.
“What’s more, it will directly help farmers and therefore the economy in Wales. To that end we are working hard to promote Welsh eggs not just to consumers, but to bodies in the public and private sectors.”
He also pointed to a partnership with Harper Adams University, giving students access to Oaklands’ Tecno colony system in Wem. “Sadly, there has been a reduction in the number of young people coming into the egg industry, and we need to attract young people back to poultry farming,” said Mr Griffiths.
“This area of farming is a highly technical and academic subject and we hope our coalition with Harper Adams will help highlight the opportunities and create a test bed to benefit ourselves and the wider industry.”