Salad Days is a specialist manufacturer of sandwich fillings and salads servicing the retail and foodservice sector in Tyneside.
Established in 1991 as a fresh fruit and vegetable supplier, it has evolved to become a leading brand for sandwich-makers in the area.
In this manufacturer close up, we speak to Carl Robertson, director at Salad Days, on how he turned the business into a sandwich-filling success.
Tell us about Salad Days
Salad Days started out under another name: Ready Veg. The business concentrated on supplying fresh fruit and vegetables locally, until we started producing coleslaw in 1996.
A year later we went into the sandwich filling industry and are continuing to make a wide range of filling products for caterers today. We moved into our 2,000sq ft manufacturing facility in 1997.
Our customers are predominately Tyneside-based, and thanks to the strong relationships we’ve built with them, we’re a well-known food brand in the area. Indeed, we have made more than one million sandwich fillings since launching!
What makes you stand out from the competition?
Our strength has always been threefold; a competitive price, excellent service, and a consistent high quality.
We’re lucky to have a well-trained and dedicated team of 10, who are split into office roles, manufacturing the fillings, and distribution via our fleet of four vans.
Thanks to my staff, I tell my customers that sandwich fillers don’t go on holiday, are never sick, and they always turn up!
This helps drive home just how reliable we are, and how much easier it is to buy fillings directly from us to help grow their businesses.
What are Salad Days’ next steps?
We’re focused on organic growth here, having expanded at a steady rate ever since our beginnings.
Thanks to a lot of loyalty from our customers, we’ve punched above our weight as a small manufacturer in a competitive food market and our products are used by approximately 500 businesses.
I continue to believe that by being consistent, more success will come.
How does Erudus help the business?
As we deal with a wide variety of ingredients, Erudus plays an important role in demonstrating the traceability of our products.
Many of our fillings are manufactured in a nut-free environment, so having the specifications available via the online platform instantly helps us prove the absence of allergens.
Insurance is an expense until it’s needed, and Erudus provides us with constant reassurance that our data is available whenever a customer requests it.