Aston Manor continues to invest in "challenging" cider market

Aston Manor Cider has said it will continue to invest in production despite the UK cider market shrinking for a second year running.

Image: A Rendle (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Image: A Rendle (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Birmingham-based cidermaker, which produces the Kingstone Press and Frosty Jack lines as well as retailers' own-brands, has invested £30m over the last five years, including £5m last year, its 2015 accounts reveal.

These also show a 27 per cent increase in export sales, and though sales dipped in its home market, they still out-performed the UK cider market as a whole.

Managing director Gordon Johncox said: "Building a sustainable and successful cider business means exploiting profitable export opportunities selectively and strong performance in the UK.

"The progress we have made in the last few years in the UK has been to shift a greater proportion of our sales to more premium products and exit low-value business, whilst still doing better than the total market in what are very challenging conditions."

He added: "The slight dip in our UK sales is better than the experience for the total market, though is a reflection of how tough trading has been – not helped by a poor summer in 2015."

Investment has included development of a world-class fruit pressing and processing mill in Stourport-on-Severn and regular upgrades across all sites, leading to all of its production facilities being awarded the highest possible rating for quality of operations by the British Retail Consortium.


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