The Perthshire manufacturer behind Mackie’s Crisps has doubled production to more than half a million packets a week.
Scotland’s biggest crisp brand is produced by Mackie’s at Taypack, in Errol.
The joint venture was set up in 2009 by Mackie’s of Scotland, then best-known for its ice cream, and Perthshire potato farmers, the Taylor family.
In the past year its weekly production has risen from an average of 275,000 packs to more than 500,000.
The Perthshire operation now employs a team of 50 staff.
New manager makes changes
The increase in production comes after general manager Emma Foster returned to the company one year ago.
Starting out with Taypack Potatoes Ltd in 1999 as a production manager, Emma has seen the Taylor family business transform.
After taking a two-year career break to explore new avenues, she found herself drawn back to the company in 2020.
In the past year, Emma restructured production runs and shift patterns resulting in better work life balance, reduced on site waste and increased productivity by 20%.
Shift patterns have changed to manage the increase in orders, but also give the employees a better work life balance.
Alongside the rise in production, Emma has helped cut down on site waste from 10% to less than 3%.
She has monitored waste from every production run and invested in new packaging with altered dimensions.
Emma says: “Returning to the Mackie’s team has been like coming home.
“Even though a lot has changed I feel like I’m back where I’m supposed to be.
“The team is always open to new ideas and there is always something exciting going on, whether that be product launches or infrastructure developments.
“It’s like a breath of fresh air.”
New range of Mackie’s Crisps snacks
Emma’s one-year anniversary of returning to the factory has been marked with growing demands as a result of over 27 new product launches.
Some of the biggest changes since Emma’s return is the new product range and healthier snacks.
She says: “When Mackie’s Crisps started in 2009, its first stockist was Tesco with just six flavours.
“We now have 40 flavours with a thriving online store, export business, healthy line and various different packaging sizes.
“Throughout the last year there has been a massive jump in production with a real focus to tap into specific markets through listening and developing products that consumers want to see.
“It’s a really exciting time to be returning to the team as Mackie’s Crisps has been on a period of real growth.”