Scunthorpe site won't be left in the cold as Rick Bestwick invests to handle rapid growth

By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 7 Aug 2018

Scunthorpe's major cold storage operation looks set for further investment after the firm behind the major complex announced a first phase in a growth strategy.

Rick Bestwick, the controlled food holding specialist, is emerging from a transformational period with chief executive of the owning Magnavale Group, Colin Taylor, coming up to a year at the helm - having formed a strong partnership with founder and co-owner, Stuart Hancock.

It has just added 30 more permanent staff to its Chesterfield headquarters, as it wins several major export contracts and more than doubles its already substantial blast freezing capacity.

Mr Taylor said: “As our client base expands, our staff has to expand with it to guarantee our high service standards, and we are delighted to welcome our new colleagues on board. It’s an exciting time at Rick Bestwick, and as we continue to grow, we look forward to a bright future together.

“While this is a period of rapid growth, this is only the start of our ambitions, not just in Chesterfield, but also at our sites in Scunthorpe, Liverpool and Warrington.”

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The Celsius Parc complex was brought into the group as one of several similar businesses unified by Magnavale, under the Rick Bestwick brand. 

It was previously run by Innovate Logistics, which went into administration in 2008. Rick Bestwick has operated out of Scunthorpe since 2011, initially as via Coldstores, acquiring three stores from Innovate Logistics, and a further three from Yearsley in 2015, after Magnavale bought in.

It is now the company’s largest site with six purpose-built, stand-alone coldstores offering 650,000 sq ft of warehouse space.

The site is described as being “ideally located for the import and export of goods from Grimsby and Hull docks and an area renowned for growing some of the best produce in the country”.

The new positions include 27 warehouse operatives which became essential due to rapid increases in demand for blast freezing and microwave tempering – services Rick Bestwick specialise in.

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The company claims to have the largest blast freezing capacity in the UK, a 1,200 tonne per week microwave capability, as well as plans to further automate and expand this offering in the near future.

Mr Taylor added: “The increased demand for these technologies and services runs in parallel with the demand for proper end to end logistics necessary for modern companies to scale, grow and simplify their operations, and it’s something our customers know we can provide.”

Last year Rick Bestwick opened Europe’s largest up-tempering facility at its Chesterfield headquarters. The microwave technology can warm food from -18°C to -3°C in under three minutes – a process which could take more than 14 hours naturally.

The company enjoys a long term logistics partnership with Grimsby and Immingham shipping and transport operator DFDS.

Mr Taylor has more than 30 years’ experience in the food industry with major manufacturers such as Bernard Matthews, Moy Park, Pinguin and Vion – and prior to joining magnavale was chief operating office of Middle East food and logistics business, Mezzan.  

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