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It's safe to say we have come a very long way in four years. It's been a real rollercoaster of ups and downs, but overall Poppy's Picnic has thrived... and to a great extent this is due to the support we've had from our home county of Wiltshire. We've been extremely fortunate to have worked with the local Department of International Trade, Business West, SWMAS, Innovate2Succeed and more. All these organisations have been able to offer us many hours of expert time to help refine and grow our raw dog food business.
Two of the most impactful supporters have been Plain Action and the LEP.
The lovely Grants & Enterprise team at Community First, Alan and Lesley, closely supported our application for the EU Leader Grant, with endless patience. Under this grant, awarded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development, we were able to buy significantly larger and more powerful production machinery.
The Swindon & Wiltshire LEP agreed a loan which we used to refurbish our factory and purchase additional machinery.
Both contributed directly to our new factory going online, an increase in our production capacity, and the creation of new jobs.
This is what they had to say about their support of our business:
“It has been wonderful to see and help Poppy's Picnic expand and increase production in their new premises. We wish them all the best for the future.”
Alan Truscott, Programme Manager, Plain Action Local Action Group
"The Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is delighted to be supporting Poppy’s Picnic. A loan of £150,000 via our Growing Places Infrastructure Fund (GPIF) has enabled the re-use of a redundant agricultural building and supported the growth of the rural economy with new jobs across a variety of skill levels, a key feature of our Local Industrial Strategy."
Phil Clement, Head of Investment and Export
We would encourage any start up or small business to contact their local business support organisations, to see what free expert time is available and/or get access to grants and loans. This kind of support has been truly invaluable for Poppy's Picnic and we would not be where we are today without Wiltshire having our back.