CBILS support for Cheltenham speciality food business

Bays Kitchen

A Gloucestershire food business specialising in dietary requirements has secured a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) via SWIG Finance.

Award-winning Bay’s Kitchen creates sauces, soups, stocks and gravies which are specifically designed for people suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), as well as people on Gluten Free, Dairy Free and Vegan diets.

The loan, backed by Triodos Bank, will allow the business to expand their product lines, as well as create a new sales and marketing role to support the growing business.

Bay’s Kitchen, based in Cheltenham, began trading in 2018 and is the brainchild of CEO ‘Bay’ Burdett. Bay suffered with IBS for years, and following official diagnosis, she was advised to follow a Low FODMAP diet.

Bay realised that creating Low FODMAP meals from scratch was time consuming and there was a significant lack of Low FODMAP produce in the UK. At this point Bay decided to take matters into her own hands and create a business to fill the market gap.

Bay’s Kitchen products are certified as Low FODMAP and have been developed by trained chefs and dieticians.

In 2019, the business was awarded Gold at the Free From Foods Awards for its Tomato & Basil Stir-in Sauce and now has several national retailers on their books, including Ocado and Morrisons.

According to recent statistics, up to 1 in 5 UK residents now suffer from IBS.

Ben Haynes, Commercial Director at Bay’s Kitchen, said: “When we initially approached our high street bank for a CBILS loan, they immediately said no without even speaking with us. It is great that SWIG takes the time to understand the business. I was impressed with the process, as it matched the entrepreneurial culture we have at Bay’s Kitchen.”

SWIG’s business manager, Nicola Mapp, said:” “The impact of Bay’s Kitchen is incredibly far-reaching. Anyone with IBS, or similar conditions, will understand that there are many things that can trigger an ‘episode’, the main triggers are diet and stress. For the people who suffer, diet can be a main cause of stress – so reducing worry over diets has had a big impact on their customers lives”.

SWIG Finance is the South West’s leading Community Development Financial Institution.

Matt Boggan, senior relationship manager at Triodos Bank UK, who provided a loan to SWIG to support funding such as this, added: “We’re proud to be supporting SWIG, alongside another likeminded organisations. Its aim to make finance more accessible and inclusive aligns closely with our own values, and we look forward to hearing more about the impact that SMEs like Bay’s Kitchen have in the South West.”