The idea for the Orchard Pig range of apple juices and cider literally fell out of the sky when Andrew Quinlan and Neil MacDonald wanted to find a use for the surplus fallen apples from the orchards where they reared their herd of Gloucester Old Spot pigs.
The success of the range over just 18 months has led them to invest in an ES60 manual shrinkwrap sleeve wrapping machine from Wraps UK, part of the Marden Edwards Group. The equipment is now wrapping collations of 75 and 25cl bottles of apple juice and 75 and 50cl bottles of cider on trays. The company was previously using cases to pack the products.
Currently, the Orchard Pig brand is sold mainly through farm shops and other exclusive outlets. Production is currently at around 100,000 bottles of apple juice and 70,000 bottles of cider per annum. Already Fortnum & Mason and Jamie Oliver’s restaurant chain stock the Orchard Pig range.
‘We switched to the sleeve wrapping option largely to save costs on our packaging.’ says Andrew Quinlan. ‘Cost savings per pack are already substantial and can be more than 200 per cent’ he explains. ‘Another advantage is the film we use to wrap takes up far less storage than the cases we used previously, which is a big help in a small factory. We are also doing our bit for the environment by using less packaging, for example, we no longer need the divider inserts used previously’ he adds.
‘The machine is robust and simple to operate’ comments Neil MacDonald ‘which is great for someone with limited experience of running machinery!’