Video: Norfolk-based brewer Woodforde’s to expand its reach

PUBLISHED: 08:03 23 November 2012 | UPDATED: 08:51 23 November 2012

Rupert Farquharson Picture: James Bass

Rupert Farquharson Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2012

Norfolk-based Woodforde’s brewery plans to broaden its horizons beyond East Anglia by targeting a new market in London and Essex.

The brewery based in Woodbastwick, near Norwich, whose flagship ales include Wherry and Nelson’s Revenge, have hired sales manager Mark Standen to capture trade in the capital and the wider eastern region.

But company managing director Rupert Farquharson, pictured below, said Woodforde’s would remain a Norfolk brand with strong sense of its roots within the county.

He said: “It is very much a Norfolk brand, but there is an interest in us beyond the county and we need to meet that demand. We have a strong sense of regionality and we are not looking to cover the whole country. We already have a bit of business in London and we believe there is an opportunity for more trade in the eastern region.”

The announcement comes as Woodforde’s opens its doors today and tomorrow to give visitors a free brewery tour and the chance to meet a host of local producers. The event is being held, between 10am and 7pm, with Yare Valley Oils, M&M Rutland Butchers, Peachey’s Preserves, Chillis Galore and Muntons setting up stalls at the site.

Mr Farquharson, who said the company’s turn over was just over £5m last year, added: “We believe passionately in the use of local ingredients in our beers – an ethos we share with all the producers joining us for our annual open day.”

The company, which employs 35 staff, was the winner of The Pride of Norfolk at the EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards 2012. It claims that part of its success is down to its Ale Trail promotion that takes place in hundreds of pubs across the region. Last year saw Woodforde’s achieve 30 years in business. This was celebrated at the Royal Norfolk Show when the Princess Royal cut a ‘Wherry’ birthday cake in the Woodforde’s beer tent.

• Click on the link above to see a sneak glimpse of the brewery tour.

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