A FAMILY-owned business in Cam has invested £600,000 to expand its premises and gained European accreditation to further boost the quality of its products.

Cam Catering Butchers, which works from Draycott Industrial Estate, has bought the adjacent unit on the site to gain European Food Safety Inspection Service accreditation.

This ensures the company has certified safety, quality, hygiene systems and procedures in place, boosting its standing in the eyes of its customers.

Because of the expansion, owner Tony Gabb and his son Daniel have grown their customer base to include premium nursing homes, nurseries and schools and now expect the firm’s turnover to increase by 15 per cent to over £1.4 million.

To gain the accreditation, the firm needs to have separate rooms for the preparation of meat, refrigerated to 10 degrees or below.

Separate fridges must also be used for poultry, hanging and boxed meat and firms are required to keep a high standard of records regarding hygiene, staff, traceability and meat testing.

The firm provides wholesale meat supplies to local pubs, catering companies, restaurants and hotels, receiving orders from up to 120 miles away, relying on customer recommendations rather than advertising.

The business has installed new technology so it can trace meat from plate to field, to ensure customers stay fully-informed where there food has come from.

The butchers also recycle the heat energy created from the refrigeration systems to heat the business’ water.

To support the expansion, they approached Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking for a £200,000 commercial loan.

As the facility was arranged under the Government-backed Funding for Lending Scheme, the bank was able to offer a one per cent discount on the life of the loan.

Tony Gabb said the they were proud to supply to chefs who had been sourcing their produce from them for 20 years.

“As well as new customers and sectors through our expansion, we hope to employ another three staff and an apprentice through the National Apprenticeship Service,” he said.

“Sustainability and quality is an important factor for our business and something that customers appreciate.”

Relationship manager at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, Rod Smith, said: “When Tony approached us, we could see the business’ potential.

“Cam Catering Butchers provides many businesses in Dursley with its products and will no doubt, continue to grow.”