British Sugar Factories - Cantley

Our factories


Advanced manufacturing plants



ABOUT OUR FACTORIES

Across our four factories we produce a lot more than just sugar. Our investments to date have enabled us to use as much as possible of our raw material - sugar beet - to diversify and build a successful portfolio of co-products that positively impact other industries.

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We supply around half of the UK’s demand for sugar.

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UK JOBS

We support up to 9,500 UK jobs in the wider economy.

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  INCREASE  

Together with NFU Sugar, we’ve helped improve beet sugar yields by more than 25% in the past ten years.

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GROWERS

We partner with over 3,000 growers.

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BUSINESSES

We’re Involved with 7,000 different businesses.

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INVESTED

We’ve invested £250 million in the past five years to make our four advanced manufacturing plants more efficient.



FACTORY FACTS

ABOUT BURY ST. EDMUNDS



OUR HISTORY

WHAT WE DO

CO-PRODUCTS

Bury St. Edmunds factory - Our history

THE HISTORY OF BURY ST EDMUNDS

The factory at Bury St Edmunds started operations in 1924, and has been processing sugar beet grown in Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire ever since.  

In 1972, Silver Spoon was established as British Sugar’s retail arm and is the branding that’s recognised on supermarket shelves today. During 1973, the Bury Sugar Beet Factory became the largest in Europe when two new silos were built.

In the summer of 2016, British Sugar completed the construction of a brand new £15m Anaerobic Digestion (AD) plant as part of an exciting new renewable energy business project at Bury St Edmunds.

Now fully operational, the plant produces energy in the form of electricity. While a small proportion is used to power the AD Plant, making it self-sufficient, the majority (up to 5MW) is being exported to the National Grid as clean renewable electricity.

WHAT WE DO AT BURY ST. EDMUNDS

Here at our advanced manufacturing plant in Bury St Edmunds over two million tonnes of sugar beet are produced by over 700 growers illustrating the crucial part we play in the local rural economy. 

The growers who supply our factory here in Bury come from a range of different counties including Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire. However the average distance between farm and the plant is only 28 miles.

We turn the 2 million tonnes of sugar beet in to 320,000 tonnes of quality sugar.

Bury factory 1st stage
Bury factory engineer what we do

WE TURN THE 2 MILLION TONNES OF SUGAR BEET IN TO 320,000 TONNES OF QUALITY SUGAR 

AGGREGATE AND STONES

TOPSOIL

RENEWABLE ENERGY

LIMEX

ANIMAL FEED

ELECTRICITY

ABOUT CANTLEY



OUR HISTORY

WHAT WE DO

CO-PRODUCTS

Factory cantley archive

THE HISTORY OF CANTLEY

Cantley factory was the very first sugar processing factory in the UK and kick-started the birth of our homegrown sugar industry. For over 100 years, the factory has been a landmark on the banks of the River Yare and is well known for the generations of local families who have worked alongside each other. The tradition of long service continues today and several of Cantley’s employees have worked at the factory for many, many years, providing the business with a wealth of experience.

More recently, in 2014, the Cantley Factory was once again in the public eye when nearly 270 tonnes of energy saving equipment was delivered via the River Yare.

Following collaboration between suppliers and companies all over Europe, the new equipment started its road, sea and river journey 470 miles away in Rotterdam. Crossing the North Sea on sea pontoons it was then joined by two river tugs at Great Yarmouth to continue down the River Yare. This final leg marked the first time in a generation that major equipment had been delivered to the Cantley factory by river.

WHAT WE DO AT CANTLEY

Here at our advanced manufacturing plant in Cantley over one million tonnes of sugar beet are produced by over 700 growers illustrating the crucial role we play in the rural economy.

The growers who supply our factory mainly come from Norfolk and Suffolk and the average distance between farm and the plant is only 28 miles.

We turn 1.5 million tonnes of sugar beet in to 220,000 tonnes of quality sugar.

Cantley factory what we do
Cantley factory worker what we do

WE TURN 1.5 MILLION TONNES OF SUGAR BEET IN TO 220,000 TONNES OF QUALITY SUGAR

TOPSOIL

AGGREGATE AND STONES

ANIMAL FEED

ELECTRICITY

ABOUT NEWARK



OUR HISTORY

WHAT WE DO

CO-PRODUCTS

Newark factory - Our history

THE HISTORY OF NEWARK

Newark Factory opened its doors in 1921 and is an ideal location for growers of sugar beet in Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire. Situated just beside the A1, it has excellent road links.

Nearly 100 years old, Newark, like its sister factories, has seen massive investment over the years which has turned it in to the advanced manufacturing plant it is today.

Most recently, Newark has increased the amount of storage space at its site, the 23m high and 50m wide steel structure, which is the largest across all the factories, can safely store an additional 60,000t of thick juice, sugar in its liquid form. This is the equivalent of 31,500 tonnes of bagged white sugar.

In 2014, our factory was proud to play host to David Cameron, when he visited Newark on the campaign trail. The visit was an opportunity for the Prime Minister to see British Sugar’s advanced and highly competitive food manufacturing facility, as well as meeting with engineers, technicians and apprentices from Newark.

WHAT WE DO AT NEWARK

Here at our advanced manufacturing plant in Newark over 1.6 million tonnes of sugar beet are produced by around 700 growers meaning we have a crucial part to play in the local rural economy. 

The growers who supply our factory here in Newark come from a wide range of different counties including Lincolnshire, Humberside, Nottinghamshire, Yorkshire and Leicestershire. However the average distance between farm and the plant is only 28 miles.

We turn this 1.6 million tonnes of sugar beet in to 235,000 tonnes of quality sugar 

Newark factory what we do
Newark factory engineer

WE TURN THIS 1.6 MILLION TONNES OF SUGAR BEET IN TO 235,000 TONNES OF QUALITY SUGAR 

AGGREGATE AND STONES

TOPSOIL

LIMEX

ANIMAL FEED

ELECTRICITY

ABOUT WISSINGTON



OUR HISTORY

WHAT WE DO

CO-PRODUCTS

Wissington Factory - Our history

THE HISTORY OF WISSINGTON

Towards the end of 1925, British Sugar opened the doors of its factory at Wissington for the first time. Back then the beet was delivered by rail and barge and the factory processed 600 tonnes per day. Over 90 years later the factory at Wissington is the largest and the most cost effective sugar processing site in Europe.  

As with all its factories, British Sugar has made significant investments. In 2000, British Sugar built and opened a glasshouse powered by the heat generated by the factory’s Combined Heat and Power plant. Today, this glasshouse has grown to cover 18 hectares, the UK’s largest single glasshouse.

In 2007, Wissington also became the location of the first UK bioethanol plant, winning an award from the Renewable Energy Association for the best new project, in its first year of operation.

The plant can now produce up to 64,000 tonnes of bioethanol per year. Complex heat recovery systems minimise the energy demand of the plant. This ensures the plant achieves the low carbon footprint required to produce renewable biofuels.

WHAT WE DO AT WISSINGTON

Here at our advanced manufacturing plant in Wissington over three million tonnes of sugar beet is produced by over 1,000 growers illustrating the crucial part we play in the local rural economy.

The growers who supply our factory here at Wissington come from a range of counties including Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire. However the average distance between farm and factory is only 28 miles.

We turn the 3 million tonnes of sugar beet in to over 400,000 tonnes of quality sugar & 64,000 tonnes of ethanol.

Wissington factory engineer
Wissington factory what we do

WE TURN THE 3 MILLION TONNES OF SUGAR BEET IN TO OVER 400,000 TONNES OF QUALITY SUGAR & 64,000 TONNES OF ETHANOL

AGGREGATE AND STONES

TOPSOIL

ANIMAL FEED

ELECTRICITY

LIMEX

BIOETHANOL

HORTICULTURE



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