Natures Menu, the Norfolk-based pet food manufacturer, is planning to build a new 90,000 sq ft factory costing £7 million.
The new factory would be based at Snetterton, about nine miles from the natural pet food company’s current base at Watton, and would created 30 extra jobs.
The expansion plans coincide with the firm’s impressive financial performance which has seen a 27% increase in turnover for the year ending March 31.
Natures Menu business development director Peter Roy said a growth in the natural food market had helped the business achieve a 36% year-on-year sales growth so far this year.
He said the new factory, which would be built on a 10-acre site, was in the planning stages, and if permission was granted it would be completed next year to run alongside the firm’s Watton operation.
“The pet food business for cats and dogs is worth £2.3bn in the UK, so the demand is there,” said Peter. “There is huge growth potential.”
Peter added that growth in natural pet food was partly thanks to trends in the US, which had filtered into the UK market. The market was worth 28% of total pet food sales in the US, but just 13% in the UK, allowing room for a greater market share.
If the new factory is given planning approval, Natures Menu would become the fifth largest manufacturer of pet food in the UK.
The firm, which feeds 110,000 cats and dogs across Europe, was founded in 1981 and sources its ingredients from farmers across Norfolk.
It won business of the year at last year’s EDP Business Awards, and has also collected national pet awards for its strong performance over the past few years.