Knighton Foods was formed in June 2014, and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Premier Foods plc.
Our manufacturing site at Adbaston in Staffordshire has a long history of food production, dating back as far as 1911, when the chocolate company, Cadbury, developed a milk collection facility here to transport milk by canal from surrounding Staffordshire farms to Bourneville in the West Midlands.
Manufacture of chocolate crumb on the Adbaston site followed some time later.
The January 1951 issue of the Bournville Works magazine featured an aerial photograph of the Knighton factory on its front cover. Describing the photo inside, the editor writes, “…this photograph shows that, if Bournville is ‘The Factory in a Garden’ then Knighton is ‘The Factory in the Fields.’”
The Knighton factory owes its existence to the huge popularity of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk chocolate in the twentieth century. The factory was established by Cadbury’s in 1911 to make chocolate crumb for the Bournville factory. The attraction of the rural – and at the time remote – location was a ready supply of milk and good links to Bournville via the Shropshire Union canal.
The second phase of the factory’s success is based on spray drying. This process first came to Knighton with the introduction of Marvel Instant Skimmed milk powder in 1963. The spray drying and associated processes opened up all sorts of possibilities for making powdered goods which we continue to manufacture and develop to this day.
The factory was established by Cadbury’s in 1911 to make chocolate crumb for the Bournville factory
The last narrow boat left Knighton wharf with a cargo of chocolate crumb bound for Bournville
Cadbury’s Marvel is launched
Spray drying plant built. Instantising plant and Evaporators were also installed
Chocolate Break was launched, a step change in the market from drinks where you had to add milk to instants that now just needed water
The production of Typhoo QT, an instant tea
£2 Million investment in Agglomeration and the launch of Cadbury Highlights
£1 Million upgrade of the processing area including a new spray drier preparation area
£1 Million investment in Pillow Packs and Cartons
An air conditioned Jar Filling Line was installed to handle Coffee production
The production of Hartley’s Jelly sachets starts at Knighton Factory
Lift Lemon Tea purchased from Northern Foods and introduced to the Knighton site
The production of Angel Delight starts at Knighton factory
£8 Million investment to produce Birds Dessert Range
Installation of the new line for Smash potato
Investment acquisition of Agglomeration Technology
Agglomeration Technology rebranded as Knighton Ingredients