Cambro grows UK business as chains seek kitchen storage

Cambro factory, Stuttgart

Foodservice manufacturer Cambro has revealed that the UK is now its third largest market in Europe, with the growth of chain businesses helping to bolster its growth.

The company is one of the world’s largest producers of foodservice trays, gastronorm pans, storage systems and shelving, and believes its market share across all the product sectors it serves in the UK currently stands at around 50-55%.

Speaking to FEJ on a tour of its European factory in Stuttgart, UK and Ireland national accounts manager, Brian Lavelle, said: “What we find in the UK is that a lot of domestic US chains come to this country and see what we think of a concept before they roll it out to mainland Europe. So from a Cambro point of view, if there’s no product specified in the US, then I or my colleagues will try our best to get other products specified to go into the rest of Europe. The legislation and practices in the US aren’t always the same as in Europe, so there’s always market share to grab.”

Lavelle (right) said the company was confident that the breadth of its range, which extends to more than 14,000 light equipment and food storage lines, means it can offer a solution for all end-users.Brian Lavelle, UK & Ireland national accounts manager

“No-one else offers the complete package – we pride ourselves at being the best at what we do. We are trained to a very high standard and we’ve got solutions in the back of our minds that a competing company may not think of.”

As well as its Stuttgart factory, Cambro has manufacturing facilities in Turkey, China and the US, all of which are 100% owned and operated by the company.

In Europe, distribution is managed from the Stuttgart base, which also has a showroom on hand for training, while in the UK Cambro partners with Foodservice Equipment Marketing (FEM). It holds the most popular Cambro lines at its base in Scotland, ensuring product can reach the market quickly.

Cambro shelvingLavelle says that one of the biggest value adds that Cambro offers comes in the form of its ‘StoreSafe’ assessments and safety audits. The StoreSafe assessments comprise analysing an operator’s storage solutions and advising them how they could improve this.

Lavelle has previously encountered hygienic nightmare situations such as ingredients being stored in unwashed ice cream tubs and food such as meat being placed, uncovered, on shelving.

In the UK, Cambro’s fastest selling items are its gastronorm pans and its range of shelving. “All Camshelving lines and our storage containers are HACCP compliant, so the shelving never rusts and the containers are almost unbreakable and easy to clean,” said Lavelle.

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