Weetabix celebrates its 80th birthday

The production line at Weetabix
The production line at Weetabix

One of the biggest cereal brands in the world started this month 80 years ago from humble beginnings in Northamptonshire.

Weetabix was first produced as the brainchild of Bennison Osbourne in August 1932 and was manufactured from a mill in Burton Latimer.

Now, that area has grown into a huge factory site that employs nearly 1,100 people, while the business has grown into a global brand, exporting products to 80 different countries.

Giles Turrell, CEO of Weetabix, said: “When Bennison Osbourne first started Weetabix his aim was to bring a healthy and nutritious breakfast to the great British public.

“Years on, that core ideal still stands for us.

“But, we’ve changed massively. We export all over the world, and now we’ve got several different products.

“The site itself here has changed so much too, it was an original mill area that had been preserved, now that has changed quite dramatically to a state-of-the-art production facility.

“We make 17 million Weetabix a year and what is important is that we source all of our grain from farmers within 50 miles.

“They are a key partner for us and it helps the local farming economy too.

“Around the site, we have generations of families that work here and I think that says a lot about the company.

“We’ve got people whose grandparents have worked here.”

To mark the company’s 80 years, a series of in-house events have been organised for staff throughout the month.

The company is also meeting its business partners and farmers to celebrate eight decades of success.

This year, the company agreed a deal with Bright Foods, which will bring Weetabix to the Asian markets, further strengthenning the firm’s international credentials.

But Mr Turrell added: “The heart of the company will always be here in the UK.”

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