BAKERY giant Greggs has opened the doors of its new £16.5m site in Newcastle which will supply up to 200 shops with bread and cakes.
The Newcastle company’s chief executive Ken McMeikan was joined by his predecessor Sir Michael Darrington to officially open the Longbenton bakery yesterday.
They toasted the 90,000sq ft plant on Gosforth Park Way which replaces the company’s first bakery which has operated in Gosforth since 1968.
McMeikan said: “I’m delighted Sir Michael Darrington, former group managing director, has joined me for the official opening. Sir Michael ran Greggs for 26 years and it’s a fitting tribute that he will be opening our latest bakery alongside the Mayor of North Tyneside, Linda Arkley.
“In these difficult economic times for the country I’m pleased to continue to invest here in the North East. The original Greggs bakery in Gosforth was such a milestone in the history of Greggs and it enabled us to open up many more shops to serve customers across the region. The new bakery is a wonderful continuation of that legacy and a major part of our continued growth plans for the company.
“We’ve never lost sight of our values since we started as a small family bakery in the 1930s. Look after your staff and they’ll look after your customers, give your customers great tasting food they love and make sure it’s tremendous value. And do more for the community in which your business is based.
“There have been enormous changes in the bakery industry since we opened our first regional bakery in 1968, in particular in the technology. For example, in our newest bakery, we are amongst the first bakers in the world to install two of the latest technology ovens that enable us to bake a wide range of different products, even at the same time, such is the level of control that they allow.“