Hop oil supplier’s profits soar following international expansion, product growth and investment into staff, research and support for the brewing supply chain during challenging year –
Totally Natural Solutions, a UK-based company which creates natural and sustainable hop oils for the brewing industry, is celebrating a successful year of growth which saw turnover increase 44% from £2.7 million in 2020 to £3.9 million in 2021.
The increase in turnover comes alongside its work to support brewers through a difficult year, helping them cut transport, storage and raw material costs through supply of its efficient hop products and investing in the wider education of the brewing community.
The company, which was established in 2013 by Managing Director Colin Wilson, has seen strong growth in its zero-alcohol range, HopZeroÒ, which is designed to help brewers create quality alcohol-free products in a sustainable way.
Across the business, sales have grown significantly, as brewers experiment with more efficient brewing methods and engaged in discussions around how to use hop oils to increase their business and product offering to overcome ongoing challenges faced by the industry.
Part of Totally Natural Solutions’ overall investment strategy to grow and develop its services to further support brewing needs, in July this year the company invested in a new 6,500 square foot warehouse. The new space is supporting the growth of its patented natural hop extract business and allows for an expanded team to operate from its headquarters in Tonbridge, Kent. The new warehouse has allowed for 500 pallet spaces, supported by investments in stock control systems, and will allow for shorter lead times for its increasing export sales to markets including the USA and Asia.
Alongside the physical space it operates from, Totally Natural Solutions has also significantly expanded its team with the appointment of nine new members of staff in 2021 and a further two joining in January. These roles cover various aspects of the business including sales, sensory, marketing and the warehouse.
Strategic appointments such as Dr Pedro Oliveira, a seasoned brewing and beverage professional with previous experience working at Kerry Foods and Symrise, who joined as Technical Director, and Gill Fisher, previously from Campden BRi, who strengthens the understanding of hop applications and sensory within the team, will support future growth aspirations.
The hop oil firm has demonstrated ongoing commitment to investing in the future of the wider brewing industry through learning and research development. Throughout 2021, investment has been made in the research and development team to upskill through focused training with KU Leuven University in Belgium, alongside a further sponsorship of a PhD and Post Doctorate study at University of Nottingham.
Further appointments include Steve Lewis, who joined from Carlsberg and will head up the direct sales team, supporting further growth into international markets.
Totally Natural Solutions has strong ambitions with an aspiration to take its turnover to £25 million over the next three years. Immediate plans include expanding the team further, with a focus on operations, and securing additional warehouse space to allow capacity to increase five-fold in the next year.
Commenting on the growth Colin Wilson, Totally Natural Solutions managing director said: “This year we have seen fantastic growth across the board which has allowed our internal team to feel a renewed sense of passion and optimism for the years ahead during a time which was difficult for so many. We have brought on some incredible team members who are fully invested in growing Totally Natural Solutions and have introduced new ways of working to reach existing customers and attract new customers.
“Between Covid-19 and Brexit, 2021 has been a difficult year for the brewing industry but it has also brought opportunities to adapt the way we operate in order to reach a wider audience and respond to demand and customer curiosity in ways we didn’t before. We have worked hard over the last year to find new ways of supporting all of our customers, both domestically and internationally, with a renewed focus on online discussions and technical support to help them get the most out of the products we offer.
“A big focus over the last year has been on sustainability and that is something we’ve long been championing within the industry. Using hop oil extracts instead of dried hops is a much more climate friendly way of brewing. It also takes up a lot less storage space, helping reduce footprint, and allows for a greater degree of experimentation, which provides brewers with an opportunity to bring new products to market and respond quickly to changing customer demands.
“We have come a long way from our initial 2,000 square foot premises back in 2013 and we still plan to exercise our business strategy to expand in line with support for other owner managed businesses.”