British chocolate maker, Hames Chocolates, has announced it has expanded its product offering following investment in new equipment during the Covid-19 crisis.
One of the new machines can be used to produce chocolate shavings, popular with bakers, caterers, restaurants and in hospitality for cake decorating. The cake shavings are available in a variety of flavours including milk, dark, white, dark milk, salted caramel and hazelnut. The shavings can also be used to make hot chocolate that can be sold in grocery retailers.
Another addition to the factory is a new moulding line, which, thanks to a spiral cooling tunnel, can increase production volume, whilst adding new dimensions and enabling more innovation with product lines. For example, it is now possible for Hames Chocolates to produce filled chocolate Neapolitans and filled chocolate bars.
A chocolate spinner has also been added to increase the company’s spinning capacity allowing them to make more hollow products and cake decorations, such as cake domes and Christmas novelties.
Carol Oldbury, Director of Hames Chocolates, explains: “We have always tried to be positive and agile in our approach to business and, at the beginning of lockdown, we found that this was more important than ever. With a large proportion of our customers being in the food service and hospitality sectors, we saw a reduction in a core part of our business. As a result of this sudden and dramatic change, we knew we needed to make changes quickly in order to future-proof our business. One of the ways we chose to do this was to invest in equipment which has allowed us to diversify our business and potentially open up new revenue streams.”
Hames Chocolates is a second-generation, family-run business, which has been making chocolates in Lincolnshire for fifteen years. They now supply many well-known businesses and high street brands with chocolates for all occasions – from Christmas to Easter, Mother’s Day to Valentine’s Day – as well as for gifting and general retail. Hames Chocolates have customers across the leisure and retail sectors, including high footfall tourism attractions, leisure centres and holiday parks, as well as specialist chocolate shops, chocolate makers, garden centres and department stores. They offer bespoke personalised confectionery for both own label and promotional sectors, and work with many food service suppliers too.