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Farmison steak and caviar basket

Online butcher Farmison & Co has appointed corporate advisors to raise fresh investment after turnover doubled as consumers spent more on home food delivery during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Yorkshire-headquartered meat delivery firm is targeting sales of £100m with ambitious plans to continue disrupting the industry.

Revenues doubled to about £12m in the year to end of March 2021, surpassing the whole of 2018 and 2019 combined, as demand for DTC businesses soared throughout the Covid lockdowns in the UK.

Over the past 12 months Farmison has introduced seven-day and next-day delivery options and invested £1m of capital expenditure in cold-storage capacity.

Farmison said changing consumer habits and a desire for more sustainable, ethical and high-quality meat, paired with continued investment in British heritage breeds, had resulted in a 195% surge in ecommerce revenue, with the business fulfilling close to 150,000 orders at year end.

To build on the rapid expansion that has led to the active customer base rising five-fold year-on-year, Farmison has appointed KPMG to explore strategic options and help access new investment to support growth, marketing, international expansion and operational innovation.

Founder and CEO John Pallagi, who started formed Farmison in 2011 alongside friend Lee Simmons with a mission to encourage consumers to eat better meat, said the business had shown “great resilience” since the launch a decade ago.

“Now, we want to go further ensuring we can continue our growth, fly the flag for British meat excellence, and in support of the farmers who play such a vital role in our supply chain.”

The KPMG team will be led by Rob Baxter, head of the firm’s consumer and retail M&A practice.

He said: “Farmison & Co continues to go from strength to strength, consistently recognising and catering to changing consumer needs. Having grown quickly and profitably, with the opportunity to export overseas alongside the right investment partner, the potential for this British business to grow further is limitless.”

Based in Ripon in North Yorkshire, Farmison employs more than 100 staff – including its own Michelin-starred chef.

The business works with artisan farmers largely across the north of England, slow-rearing ancient heritage breeds native to the British Isles.

As well as selling direct online, the brand also supplies high-end retailers such as Fortnum & Mason and Harrods, as well as recipe box company Mindful Chef.

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