Kluman & Balter clocks up 100 years of baking innovation

By Gill Hyslop

- Last updated on GMT

Kluman & Balter celebrates 100 years of supplying bakery ingredients. Pic: Kluman & Balter
Kluman & Balter celebrates 100 years of supplying bakery ingredients. Pic: Kluman & Balter

Related tags Kluman & Balter centennial Bakery ingredients supplier Brenntag

Originally founded as a family business in East London, the UK ingredients wholesaler has been at the forefront of bakery innovation since 1923.

Kluman & Balter was passed down four generations before being acquired by Brenntag in 2017.

Capitalising on the German chemical giant’s global network took the Essex-based business to the next level, firmly establishing it as one of the UK’s largest bakery ingredients suppliers and wholesalers boasting a portfolio of over 1,500 products.

Kluman and Balter

It was also a win for Brenntag, which, at the time, said the deal would increase its footprint in the UK’s “very attractive food and nutrition sector”. ​Brenntag operates from more than 550 locations and generated sales of €10.5bn in 2016.

“The UK bakery ingredients and cake mixes market is expected to continue to grow, benefiting from positive consumer trends such as increasing demand for gluten, lactose or other free-from goods,”​ said Anthony Gerace, Brenntag Group MD for mergers and acquisitions.

“In addition, the companies focus on higher-value products and channels like artisanal bakers, instore bakeries and foodservice, thus creating further growth potential.”

Following the Brenntag acquisition, Kluman & Balter moved shop to a multi-million-pound high-tech delivery hub and development centre in Manchester, allowing it to offer national delivery across the UK.

Making every day extraordinary

Kluman and Balter Lawrence Watson
Lawrence Watson

The centenary marks a huge milestone in the company’s history.

Numbered amongst its notable achievements has been adopting American-style cake and doughnut mixes for the UK; partnering with an Irish baker to launch edible ink printers - which led to the popular personalisation of printed photos on cakes; and adapting recipes to use more sustainable and affordable products.

It is also understandably proud of its range of Kaybee Cake Mixes, along with its capability to create bespoke mixes for larger customers. Alongside this, the company also supplies a wide range of other market-leading brands, including Dawn, MacPhie, CSM, Puratos, Ireks, Renshaw and Bakels.

“Our longevity and success are founded on the key elements of entrepreneurship, innovation, loyalty and commitment to a common purpose,”​ said Lawrence Watson, Kluman & Balter MD.

He also attributes the company’s success to its workforce and “their passion to delight customers with high quality ingredients.

“Our employees - [their] commitment, energy and dedication - make us who we are.

“I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our customers, our suppliers and stakeholders who allow us to deliver Kluman & Balter’s passion to help our customers make every day extraordinary.”

At the core of Kluman & Balter is its promise to continue providing the service it is known for - for the next 100 years and beyond.

“I am personally incredibly proud to lead this business as we embark on a new centenary and look forward to the next 100 years, where we will face a number of challenges we must rise to,” ​said Watson.

“Innovation is crucial and it is vital we retain the passion for delighting our customers with fantastic tasting products and high-quality ingredients.”

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