Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg last week unveiled the new Oreo production line at Mondelez’s Sheffield facility, the first time the American biscuit has been manufactured in the UK.
Mr Clegg was joined by former home secretary David Blunkett, MP for the Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough region where the plant is based, to cut the ribbon on the new operation.
Belvita breakfast biscuits will begin production on the site from August, while existing Maynards Winegums, Bassett’s Jelly Babies, Liquorice Allsorts and Trebor Mints brands will continue to be manufactured in Sheffield.
Mr Clegg, who also met with a team of trainees undertaking four year apprenticeships, said: “Bringing the Oreo biscuit production line to the UK for the first time is great news for Sheffield and adds Oreos to the global brands we proudly tag ‘Made in Sheffield.
“This investment is a huge boost for the city and the UK – securing local jobs and giving Sheffield employees the skills to work on yet another global brand.”
Both men also donned hairnets and took a tour of the factory, which has been making sweets in Sheffield for over 170 years.
The site, which boasts the capability of being able to produce 10,000 Oreos per minute, could be further expanded in the future, with the possibility of additional Oreo products being manufactured there.
Mondelez, which was created last year to oversee parent company Kraft’s sweets and biscuits arm, has invested a figure of around £6m into the facility, safeguarding 70 jobs.
The costs include the investment made in re-training staff, with Sheffield workers training to operate at the new facility at the manufacturer’s biscuit facility in Spain and its R & D centre in Paris.
The production of Oreos in the UK increases its status as Europe’s biggest biscuit market, with Kraft investing £50m in the country’s biscuit and chocolate industries since 2010.
Since launching on these shores in 2008, Oreo’s UK revenue has gone up by 16% year-on-year, and now totals a £22m annual figure.
It remains the world’s biggest biscuit brand, worth more than £1.3bn and is the most popular brand in the USA, Canada and China.