French scientist Mege Mouries, invented margarine in response to the need for a more economical product than butter with better keeping qualities.
The invention was sold to Dutch firm Jurgens who combined with another firm, Van den Bergh, to become the first commercial producers of margarine.
Craigmillar’s first factory, producing margarines, was built in the shadow of its namesake Craigmillar Castle near Edinburgh. The factory was valued at £5,000 and later bought by Van den Bergh.
The Ward Baking Co. of New York who owned a chain of bakeries throughout the United States couldn’t understand why the bread they made was different in every town. The Mellon Institute of Industrial Research was sponsored by Ward to identify the reason why. This work revealed that the mineral salt content of the local waters was causing the variation and by creating a mixture of these minerals an improvement and standardisation of the bread could be achieved. The Mellon’s director of research at the time was Dr Robert Kennedy Duncan -RKD - Arkady, and so a name and product was born.
Opening of new factory at Bromborough by William Lever for his Planters Margarine Company. Lever later joined with Van Den Bergh and Jurgen to become Unilever.
In the UK Arkady yeast food began to be manufactured in Willesden, London.
Arkady products had become so successful that an entirely new factory was built at Manchester. Production was doubled in 1929 and again in 1936.
Craigmillar was bought by Van den Bergh & Jurgens.
British Arkady Co. moved to Old Trafford, Manchester, marketing a single product, Arkady.
Planters produces the world’s first vitaminised margarine. A breakthrough which led to margarine being established as a food and today all margarines are vitaminised by law.
Increasing business led to a doubling in size of the Bromborough factory.
Bromborough becomes Europe’s largest oil refinery.
Van den Bergh & Jurgens pioneer the introduction of flour cake mixes.
The company extended its bakery expertise to complete mixes for institutional and industrial canteens.
The Wirral factory became known locally as the Stork Margarine factory after one of the famous branded products manufactured at the site.
British Arkady acquired a substantial interest in the Tweedy group, famous for its high-speed mixer developed for the Chorleywood Bread Process.
New hydrogenation plant commissioned at Bromborough, processing 2,500 tons of oil per week for production of margarines.
British Arkady, now part of ADM expands its markets across the UK and Ireland and into 21 other countries with a broader range of products including bread mixes, cake, pudding and pastry mixes.
Country Home Bakers, a major player in the cookie market saw an opportunity to sell its product, in the UK and started trading as Readi-Bake, the American cookie brand name.
Readi-Bake develops partnership with Millies, the largest independent retailer of cookies. Initially production was with a UK 3rd party.
Acquisition of Burton, Son and Saunders, whose product range consisted of sugar strands, jellies and custards including the highly regarded “Crème Pâtissière”.
Readi-Bake opened its own small factory in Milton Keynes which was soon at full capacity.
British Arkady sold to Unilever, joining the Bakery Ingredients division to become Arkady Craigmillar in 1996.
Changing customer demand leads to massive investment in the Wirral site (£15m) turning it from a fats company to one producing a wide range of bakery ingredients and frozen products.
Merger of Arkady and Craigmillar. Started cookie production.
Investment in largest doughnut plant in the world (in its day!).
Investment in new tunnel oven for baked muffins, sheet cakes and cookies.
Started scone production in Bromborough. Launched highest performing liquid bread ingredients on the market.
Acquired Simpsons licence for doughnuts, brownies and cookies. Acquired Smarties ® licence for all fresh bakery products (excluding muffins). Acquired by CSM from Unilever.
Integration of cake mix production to internal site; (previously manufactured at Unilever site). Acquisition of Readi-Bake.
Acquisition and integration of Caravan Brill (icings, cake mixes).
Arkady Craigmillar & Readi-Bake are renamed as BakeMark UK but the names Arkady, Craigmillar and Readi-Bake remain alongside Bon Vivant and Caravan Brill as its five key brands. BakeMark UK operates from three sites: Manchester, Wirral & Milton Keynes.
First bakery manufacturer to remove hydrogenated fats from all its internally produced products.*
Acquired Nestlé licences for Toffee Crisp ®, Rolo ®, Milky Bar ® and Yorkie ® for all fresh bakery products (excluding muffins).
Investment in £2m glazed doughnut plant. Tesco supplier award for outstanding contribution.
Acquired Harden Foods, producers of handmade impulse sweet snacks including mini bites, individually wrapped slices, traybakes, biscuits and traditional Eccles cakes.
The European CSM Frozen & Bakery Products Innovation Centre opens. The centre is a hub for bringing the latest developments in frozen bakery products to customers and consumers across Europe.
In 2001 BakeMark UK was acquired by CSM, the worldwide market leader in developing, producing and distributing high-quality bakery ingredients and products. To reinforce our local and global identity BakeMark UK became CSM (United Kingdom) Ltd from January 1st 2010. The name change strengthens our identity as a member of the CSM worldwide group and builds a stronger bridge between our local market operations and the expertise that CSM has worldwide to create a better base for a bright and innovative future.
Watch this space...