More than 14,000 Bakewell Puddings are being sent to Japan for two major food festivals.
Richard Nealon and Esplin Chapman, owners of Bloomers Craft Bakery, were approached by Hankyu Dept Stores in January about taking part in their annual British Food Festival in October in Hakata and Osaka.
Discussions took place but Richard and Esplin were still shocked when the order size of 14,800 Bloomers Original Bakewell Pudding®s was received.
As it would be impractical to export all the ingredients and cook the puddings in Japan, they will be baked in the UK and then sent out there.
A thousand puddings will be baked at a time, and then transported to Holdsworth Foods in Tideswell, who are specialists in food storage and packaging.
Once complete, the full order will be sent frozen in a sea container, 12,000 nautical miles to Japan from Southampton.
Timing is critical as the journey will take up to 40 days, with an additional ten days for the puddings to clear customs.
To ensure the puddings are prepared and served exactly as they should be, Richard and his head baker will travel out to Japan in October for the five-day festival in Hakata followed by the seven-day festival in Osaka.
Commenting on the order and the opportunity, Richard Nealon said, “I have to say this is something we’re very pleased and proud to be doing. “Going to Japan will be very exciting and we’re really looking forward to getting to understand the Japanese food scene and retail environment.
“There are still a few things left to be confirmed - getting all the documentation ready for customs has been very challenging but we’ve already sent a test package of puddings a few days ago just to see how they fare.
“Once we have customs clearance, we’ll get the green light and start on the production and the target is to get the order baked, frozen and ready to be shipped out during the first week in August.
“The whole experience really has been wonderful so far, and we can’t wait to travel to Japan to discover how the Japanese people like our authentic pudding.”