EDP Business Awards 2017 finalists – Top100 Accelerator

PUBLISHED: 13:22 18 October 2017 | UPDATED: 13:35 18 October 2017

Norwich, Norfolk. The EDP Business Awards at the Royal Norfolk Showground 2016. 


Norwich, Norfolk. The EDP Business Awards at the Royal Norfolk Showground 2016. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Mark Bullimore Photography

We take a look at the finalists in the Top100 Accelerator category of the EDP Business Awards 2017.

Top100 Accelerator sponsored by Mills & Reeve, PwC and Roche

Banham Poultry

Banham Poultry started in the village of Banham in the 1950s. In the 1980s the business moved to Bunns Bank, Attleborough, processing 500,000 chickens per week. Following a fire in 1998, the business moved to Station Road, Attleborough, and currently processes close to one million birds per week, employing more than 1,000 staff, with ambitious plans to grow further.

The company will shortly become the fourth largest in its sector, the only remaining family business with third generation involvement.

The business has a reputation for producing quality fresh chicken and maintains an excellent reputation for customer service, technical innovation and leadership. The ‘flavoured cook in the bag’ wholebird has received high plaudits from retailers with one line winning the ‘Meat & Poultry Joints category champion’ in The Grocer Own Label Food & Drink Awards 2017.


Bespak is a leading developer and manufacturer of complex medical devices. It is based in King’s Lynn and was founded in 1959.

Bespak supplies respiratory drug delivery devices, valves and actuators, injectable devices and medical check valves to customers globally. Each year it moulds around 2.6 billion components which are assembled into approximately 550 million devices, and every second more than 1,000 patients use one of its devices to help them breathe.

Bespak employs approximately 950 staff between its King’s Lynn, Cambridge and Nelson (Lancs) sites. It recognises the importance of the positive impact it can make through its people and in the communities it serves. Bespak is proud to support those communities through a great number of charitable partnerships and initiatives.

Smithfields Foods

Smithfield Foods Ltd is the UK arm of WH Group, a global protein business. Formed in 2003, Smithfield UK became part of the European structure in 2012; working with its farming and manufacturing companies in Poland and Romania to bring a variety of pork and poultry products to the UK retail, foodservice and wholesale markets.

Based in Norfolk Tower, Surrey Street, Smithfield employs 45 staff. Over the last five years it has trebled in size as customers and consumers seek the security of European meat reared to high standards and products manufactured in well invested and managed factories.

Smithfield aims to be an exciting and rewarding place to work, fostering an open culture and investing in the development of its people, enabling it to continue its growth trajectory in the years to come.

What the judges said

Smithfield Foods is an £84m-turnover business that is showing impressive growth through its four divisions, primarily supplying the specialist pork and poultry products sector. It has plans to be self-sufficient – so only selling product from its own group – and will be expanding its volumes significantly over the next few years. It demonstrates innovation through working with customers to develop new products/tastes and utilising products fully to avoid waste.

Banham Poultry is a £122m-turnover business that has come through a period of turnaround and is now embarking on significant investment in its site at Attleborough with the aim of doubling production. The company is investing in new technology and is working with partners to innovate in infection control and antibiotic usage in production. The business still has significant challenges around its cost base in the price of feed but also the impact of Brexit on its workforce.

Bespak achieved increased sales of more than £121m last year. The company is a large scale manufacturer and the nature of its products require the highest standards of reliability and performance. Achieving these objectives underpins the management ethos of the company. Innovation and technological advances are key to Bespak’s on-going successes, working in collaboration with its sister company Aesica and its blue-chip pharmaceutical and life science customers.

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