Business Resilience 2022

30 November 2022

Fresh Pastures & SMUK

Fresh Pastures has experienced transformational change – evolving from a traditional milk processing plant into a chilled distribution business. However, when over 90% of its business was lost due to Covid-19, the company diversified and implemented strategic changes to survive and thrive.


Within 48 hours of the original lockdown, the team at Fresh Pastures and SMUK started to deliver essential food to children on free school meals, children of key workers, children with special needs, the elderly, the isolated and food banks.

Not only did this include the introduction of doorstep deliveries, but a shift from the supply of just milk and morning goods to everyday essentials, luxury items and hampers. An e-commerce platform was introduced to support this, while route and staffing planning was upgraded to support the changes.

Fresh Pastures became stronger during this volatile period because it is a business that could pivot during a challenging time. Alongside saving jobs, more drivers and supervisors were recruited, and new contracts were secured.

As schools returned and regular business resumed in 2021, the company's focus returned to its longer-term vision. A holding company was introduced and the business was separated into three profit centres - Fresh Pastures Food Service, FP Logistics, and School Milk UK.

Since this time, diversification of the customer base has been a priority. There has been an expansion of non-school business, with over 430 new customers and national rollout plans implemented.