News & Awards

20th Sep 2023

Limited edition Milk Loaf with Fenugreek, created in partnership with our local community.

Our second limited edition bakery product, created by four budding food entrepreneurs from Gloucester is now on sale in our Farmshops at Gloucester Services, thanks to a unique collaboration between Gloucester Services, Hobbs House Bakery and Gloucestershire Gateway Trust.

The ‘Limited Edition’ course was created to give aspiring food producers from our local communities the opportunity to learn new skills by undertaking product research, product development and teamwork, culminating in the pitch of three different product ideas to representatives from our Commercial team at Westmorland, and Hobbs House Bakery.

The team’s inspiration for a milk loaf stemmed from childhood memories of light and fluffy freshly baked bread, adding fenugreek for its health benefits and to acknowledge the diversity of Gloucester, and the team themselves.

Originally from the Philippines, Viva O’Flynn moved to the UK in 2018 and started her own business, as well as working in our local communities. Viva said:

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to develop my business skills for free, it has been inspiring and life changing. I have been to Gloucester Services many times and imagined what it would be like to have my products sold there. Taking part in the Limited Course has helped me to understand what buyers are looking for and I have learnt so much from the tutor and the other participants. I wish more people could experience this course.”

Hobbs House Bakery have been bringing the product to life and the Milk Loaf with Fenugreek will be on sale from 26th September – we can’t wait for you to try it. The loaf will be found on the bread table at the front of the Farmshops and will have a QR code alongside to allow customers to find out more about the unique product.

This Limited Edition course was funded by the Multiply adult numeracy programme and Adult Education in Gloucestershire, and delivered by local social enterprise The Engine Room CIC.

Charlie Marwood, Top Cog at The Engine Room which is based in Dursley, said:

“Working with a small group of enthusiastic entrepreneurs enabled us to focus on the principles behind good business practice. The team developed product ideas, carried out research, learnt about production techniques and built budgets to support everything from marketing, pricing strategy, cost analysis, profit margins and potential discounting to bring a successful new product to Gloucester Services Farmshop. The course has delivered skills, growth, confidence, ambition and friendships. I am particularly grateful for the enthusiasm and hard work of all involved. A fabulous course to be involved with – thank you all.”

Jason Dunsford, Head of Neighbourhood Learning and Work at Gloucestershire Gateway Trust said:

In addition to reinvesting up to 3p in every £1 spent at Gloucester Services in our communities, we are passionate about connecting local people to the business through jobs, creative opportunities and as suppliers. This course was about improving business maths and marketing skills but also to raise the confidence of people looking to take that next big step to start or develop their business idea. We are committed to finding and nurturing talent from our local communities and excited to see what the future holds for this course’s participants. Who knows, perhaps we’ll see their own products on the shelves in the not so distant future!

You can find out more about Limited Edition and watch a short film about the course on the Gloucestershire Gateway Trust website.