Bestway Group has launched Bestway Batleys Foodservice across the UK – expanding its operation which was confined to Scotland.
The service is based on 17 dedicated foodservice depots, stretching from Aberdeen to Plymouth. Bestway Batleys Foodservice now has 62 depots overall. The company has also increased the number of sales staff it has on the road from 6 to 17.
Planning for the expanded foodservice network started a year ago and was encouraged by the group’s sucessful Batleys Scottish Features > Business, with customers including Glasgow and Edinburgh councils and the Scottish Prisons Service. Much of Bestway Batleys Foodservice’ Scottish business is based on its acquisitions. It bought Scotland-based C J Lang Foodservice, Bellevue Drinks and Martex in 2010.
Highlights of the new business include a full butchery service, which will be able to cut meat exactly as customers need it. It will also supply exotic meats, including springbok and crocodile.
Bestway Batleys Foodservice will additionally be re-vamping its own label brand “in order to refresh it”. Details of this will be announced in the next few months.
Market research carried out before the launch indicated that customers now put a high premium on locally sourced and organic produce and that an ethical food chain mattered to them. Customers also want to not only order online, but also to talk to staff: Bestway Batleys has increased its telesales staff accordingly. Paul Rabone, group catering controller, said: “Ordering online is vital but it’s equally important to have someone to talk to.”
Bestway Batleys intends to hold prices on its foodservice supplies for 12-week periods, so customers can plan expenditure in the medium term.
Operations director Martin Race said: “We have developed a service for caterers and foodservice operators, which gives them access to a comprehensive range of top quality products and services which are competitively priced. Our new model is reinforced by a strong and dedicated national field sales, contract sales and central telesales teams, enabling our products to reach the hearts of kitchens across the UK via a timely and efficient infrastructure.”