Our People


At Stateside Foods, we want business growth to benefit employees and their families. Our primary concern is the safety of everyone who works at Stateside Foods, but beyond this we believe that the education, development and wellbeing of our employees are important factors which will help us to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to eliminate poverty, create decent jobs and aid economic growth.


Stateside Foods focuses on embedding a safety culture in the day-to-day work of every single person who works with or for our company. Health and Safety Champions Committees meet monthly. Each committee has worker representatives from all operational areas. The aim is to identify health, safety and operational issues and manage any issues raised locally and feed these in for company-wide consideration.

Issues that require a strategic approach, may be referred to the Corporate Health and Safety Committee. The Corporate Health and Safety Committee meets monthly and is attended by the Managing Director, Operations Director and Heads of Engineering, Production and Logistics departments and the Health & Safety Manager.

The Health and Safety Champions Committees and escalation to senior managers and directors is a consultation process aimed to provide access for workers across all areas of the business. Every employee has a voice in our mission to reduce our lost time injuries to zero.

Our passion for Continuous Improvement is reflected in our targets to reduce the frequency and seriousness of accidents year-on-year.

We are pleased to report that although some accidents still occur, 77% of accidents were considered to be minor and we have a zero rate of work-related fatalities.

2018 Results

Total injuries 106
Lost time injuries 14
Lost days due to injury 232
Reduction in accidents from previous year 20%

Reducing Risks

Inherent in our bakery process, is the use of flour. Airborne flour dust has been identified as a respiratory sensitiser. The Workplace Exposure Limit and the COSHH Substantial Limit of airborne flour dust is 10mg/m3. Given these factors, there is a management requirement for exposures to be reduced as low as reasonably practicable. The company continuously strives to reduce the generation of dust at source. In addition, we work to install systems that reduce dust once it has become airborne. We operate significantly within legal tolerance and limits.

Periodically we review our status with third party audits, measuring airborne flour dust and our workforce’s exposure to it.

The emission of noise from plant and machinery in a manufacturing environment is inevitable. In noisy environments, we supply hearing protectors, and with high noise areas we take measures to minimise exposure to that environment, whether hearing protection is used or not. The company is continuously updating plant and equipment with the latest technology for safety, quality and efficiency. The generation of workplace noise is taken into account when designing new work places and purchasing new plant and equipment.

Third party audits of noise levels are a key aspect in our process with workplace and plant design. Our surveys have identified no exposure above the legal level when ear protectors are needed, however, Stateside Foods provides hearing protection for use in all production areas, to simply maximise staff comfort. Machine rooms where noise is higher, are kept secure from unauthorised entry and the wearing of hearing protection is mandatory.

In addition to continuously strengthening company policies and processes, our senior management team have driven a health and safety programme, prioritising practical solutions aimed at having the greatest impact on reducing accidents within their departments. The expansion of the company premises continues to produce challenges, so a major part of the work completed by the team has included project safety.

The installation of new automated product handling machinery has vastly reduced the need for manual handling by staff, and changes in the layout of production areas has significantly reduced operational risks. Further improvement are planned for the coming year.


Diversity is one of our main challenges and we continue to monitor data across the main metrics of age, nationality and gender, to assess how we manage this.

We work to ensure that we do not discriminate against people or culture. We have systems in place to ensure that discriminatory acts are logged. There have been no acts of discrimination to report. Stateside Foods is committed to an equal opportunities and diversity policy.

Although we have a very diverse workforce in terms of nationalities, with 37 represented within the company overall, there is still room to improve diversity across other dimensions. As part of our Brixit planning, we are helping 279 of our EU staff to gain settled status in the UK.

The graphs below illustrate the diversity of the different areas of the business. Greater numbers of nationalities are present in the production and warehouse departments than in any other area and we are mindful that work needs to be done in order to increase numbers of ethnic minorities working in senior positions. Understandably, the first level management are older, as these roles require experience, but it is also interesting to note that the Engineering department are generally older workers, due in part, to the recent shortages of young students focussing on the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects. Because of this, we are working hard to introduce young people to Engineering through our apprenticeship schemes.

The charts below illustrate the diversity of the different areas of the business. Greater numbers of nationalities are present in the production and warehouse departments than in any other area and we are mindful that work needs to be done in order to increase numbers of ethnic minorities working in senior positions. Understandably, the first level management are older, as these roles require experience, but it is also interesting to note that the Engineering department are generally older workers, due in part, to the recent shortages of young students focussing on the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects. Because of this, we are working hard to introduce young people to Engineering through our apprenticeship schemes.

Actions to promote diversity are ongoing and include:

• Efforts to build awareness of issues relating to diversity among business managers through educational
• Family-oriented benefits, such as childcare schemes and enhanced maternity pay.
• Multi-faith prayer rooms on-site
• All engineering apprentices brought into the business are aged 16 – 24.

Gender pay Gap

Stateside Foods are an equal pay employer. Gender pay gap is distinct from equal pay, as all employees are paid the same rate for doing the same job. There is no difference between the rates paid to men and women.

The differences in the distribution of males and females in different areas of the business, seen above, have led to an overall mean gender pay gap of 10.7% as departments such as the senior team are predominantly male. We recognise the need to achieve a more balanced split at senior level, and are actively seeking to increase the number of female senior managers.

Pay Information

Mean hourly pay difference between male and female employees: 13.2%
Median hourly pay difference between male and female employees: 12.8%

Stateside Foods Ltd’s gender pay gap is significantly lower than the UK median gender pay gap of 17.9% for 2018 for all employees.


Of the 251 employee’s in the lower quartile 187 are male and 64 are female. This means 74.5% are male and 25.5% are female.

Of the 252 employee’s in the lower middle quartile 185 are male and 67 are female. This means 73.4% are male and 26.6% are female.

Of the 252 employee’s in the upper middle quartile 181 are male and 71 are female. This means 71.8% are male and 28.2% are female.

Of the 251 employee’s in the upper quartile 177 are male and 74 are female. This means 70.5% are male and 29.5% are female.

Bonus Information

The mean gender bonus pay gap percentage is 73.2%

The median gender bonus pay gap percentage is 0%

Out of 652 relevant male employees 15 were paid a bonus. Out of 231 relevant female employees 5 were paid a bonus. This means 2.3% of all relevant males were paid a bonus and 2.2% of all relevant females were paid a bonus.

What we are doing to improve our Gender Pay Gap?

We are actively looking at ways to address the gender split throughout our business, and have a range of initiatives in place to do this.

Flexible working

We support all of our employees through shared parental leave, job sharing, part-time opportunities where we can practically facilitate this, ‘keeping in touch’ and flexible working arrangements. Employees are able to request flexible working such as part-time working and shorter days – consideration is given to this along with the specific business needs in their roles.


As an employer we want to employ the best person for the job and pay competitive rates to attract talent.

We are an equal pay employer and pay employees the same rates of pay for the same grade regardless of sex. As we grow we will continue to offer fair equitable pay to all of our employees.

We currently recruit new employees based on our employee behaviours, which reduces unconscious bias and ensures that we have a fair recruiting process.

We pay above the national living wage and above the national average by 2.3% for production operatives and for semi-skilled staff, by 2.6%.

It is difficult to recruit in our area, as the UK national unemployment rate is 3.8%, in Bolton it is 2.9 and in Westhoughton (our home town), 1.4%.

We aim to fill 70% of vacancies from within the business through development and promotion of our people and in order to achieve this, all vacancies are advertised internally.

Employee Benefits

We are further enhancing our employee benefits offerings with enhanced maternity pay to attract key skills and talent back into the workplace after maternity leave. We pay all of our time- served female staff 6 months maternity pay at 90% of salary, compared to the statutory minimum of 6 weeks at 90%.

Training & Development

We are committed to employee involvement and provide a variety of career development opportunities. All employees are actively encouraged to express their views and contribute towards business improvement through our Continuous Improvement programme, Employee Open Forums, and other initiatives.

As part of our Continuous Improvement programme, more operators have received training to allow them to carry out maintenance on production equipment, saving £0.5m. We are also using this to upskill operatives to semi-skilled operatives and management.

We recognise that our most important resource is our employees. We develop our people, providing them with nationally recognised qualifications and ensure that all employees gain necessary skills to reach their full potential.

Our recent growth has enabled many of our employees to advance their careers through opportunities that we create at all levels of our company. We have always been an organisation where people can thrive and develop regardless of their gender or background.

SStateside Foods participate in a number of educational initiatives with local schools, in order to encourage both male and female students to follow career paths based in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects equally, but we feel that there is still work to be done to encourage females into manufacturing and engineering roles.

With our plans to continue to develop these initiatives it will help improve our gender pay gap further.

Parental Leave

During 2018-19, of 1007 employees, 21 were entitled to take parental leave and 100% of these employees did so. 11 of these were female and 10 male employees.

18 employees returned to work, following parental leave. 73% of the females returned to work after parental leave. 100% of our male employees have returned to work after parental leave.

Employee Engagement

Stateside Foods has been re-awarded the Investors in People (IIP) Gold standard again this year, joining the top 7% of accredited organisations across the UK, who believe in realising the potential of their people.

Our production facilities are based in Westhoughton, Lancashire, where we have factory site of over 20 acres. Our site employs over 1000 people across a range of professions, to accommodate all aspects of the business in one location.

Stateside Foods is committed to employee involvement and provides a variety of career development opportunities. Employees are actively encouraged to express their views and contribute towards business improvement, through our Continuous Improvement programme, Employee Open Forums, Employee of the Month reward and recognition and also through the Company Suggestion Scheme.

IIP is the UK’s leading accreditation for business improvement through people management, with a focus on good people making great business.

We recognise that our most important resource is our employees. We are committed to the development of our people and ensure that all employees gain the necessary skills, to reach their full potential. We also recognise the importance of employee wellbeing. We work tirelessly to recognise the efforts of our people. We work to continually review and enhance our employee benefits package.

We operate a Buddy Scheme, for all new starters, which helps to welcome and integrate them into the business. Coupled with this, we send a confidential survey to new starters to ensure we are meeting their expectations.

Our dedicated workforce plays a major part in the development of our business and we are proud to have attained the Gold Investors in People accreditation, as we continue to work towards achieving even greater success and Platinum status, as one team, in the future.


Stateside Foods supports the health and wellbeing of its employees through a wide variety of benefits made available to all (see below). The company also understands the importance of good work life and family balance offering parental leave, enhanced maternity pay, flexible working agreements and support through childcare programmes. Other benefits offered by the Company include life insurance and employee discount schemes at various retailer/outlets.

We recognise the loyalty and hard work of our people through our Service Awards programme. For every five years of service, our people are presented with a certificate and a gift, as our way of saying thank you. In the last 4 years, we have presented over 380 service awards.

  • Company funded free corporate gym membership
  • Occupational Health
  • Physiotherapy
  • Social events to allow networking, such as our annual free Family Fun Day – open to all employees and their families and friends
  • Childcare vouchers
  • Cycle scheme
  • Long service awards
  • Pension
  • Subsidised canteen facilities
  • Discounted legal advice and products
  • Perkbox – employee benefits package
  • Counselling services
  • Company savings scheme
  • Free eye tests
  • Company sick pay
  • Gifts for new arrivals and newly weds
  • Death in service benefits
  • Compassionate leave

Family Wellbeing

Since 2013, we have held our very popular, annual Family Fun Day. This is a free event, open to all employees, their families and friends. The day involves lots of fun and games and is a great opportunity for staff to bring their families together, take a break from work and have some fun.

As part of our commitment to employee health and wellbeing, Stateside Foods are sponsors of Bolton Arena; a not for profit organisation, offering low cost sports facilities and coaching to local people. In addition to this sponsorship, Stateside Foods provides every one of its staff, with membership of Bolton Arena’s gym, fitness and athletics amenities.

This benefit also includes membership for a family member, meaning that our people can spend more time with their families, staying fit and healthy. Under the scheme, Stateside employees and their family are entitled to unlimited use of the arena’s state of the art fitness suite, sauna and steam rooms, studio classes and athletics track. This gym membership package is part of a wider initiative for Stateside to work closely with Bolton Arena to promote an active lifestyle for its workforce and Stateside Foods has several Workplace Wellness initiatives, from free fruit available to staff, to Wellness Weeks, which include onsite fitness challenges, expert advice on exercise and nutrition, and Body Fat Testing, all provided by the team of professionals from Bolton Arena.

We offer advice and support such as legal, pension and debt advice. Counselling can be provided confidentially to anyone in need through our Occupational Health service. Our free employee membership with Perkbox, also offers several services to our people through the Employee Support Hub; getting support with emotional, legal, and family issues, talking to qualified therapists – either over the phone or a live ‘chat’, and access to a wealth of information on health and wellbeing issues. This service is confidential, and can be used 24 hours a day, seven days week. Our staff Perkbox membership also includes free access to online workout and wellness classes for those who prefer to get healthy in the comfort of their own home.

Training and Development

By increasing the skills and knowledge of our employees, Stateside Foods produces confident, muti-skilled people, working as an effective and efficient team.

Our Human Resources and Learning and Development departments work together to support and strengthen the skills, knowledge and capabilities of all our team members and managers, through structured training provision and performance management

Stateside Foods operates a Performance Development Review (PDR) System for all employees who are out of their probation period. These reviews take place in January and July, and are applicable to all of the qualifying workforce.

Performance and training during the probationary period is reviewed monthly until the probationary period has been completed.

The management of Stateside Foods recognise our responsibility to ensure that all employees are trained and motivated towards achieving even greater success as one team.

Stateside Foods offers Chartered Management Institute (CMI) training, apprenticeship schemes which offer degree level qualifications, soft skills training, IT courses, vocational qualifications.

Management Training

In a fast paced industry like ours, staff development is one of the most important ways in which we can remain relevant and continue to grow. As a Chartered Management Institute (CMI) approved centre, we encourage management development by providing the training to equip our managers with the tools and skills needed to carry out their work confidently and effectively. The Chartered Manager programme requires candidates to demonstrate how they have developed as a manager. It also reviews how they have applied their leadership and change management skills to achieve a significant business impact. We have offered this training since 2014 and to date, 71 employees have been through the process at various levels. Our target is to ensure all managers receive the training and are CMI accredited.

Soft Skills Training

Soft Skills training is available to all and includes courses in Excel, Word, Powerpoint, Effective Communication, Time Management, Presentation Skills and many more subjects. We aim to train over 260 of our people in Soft Skills each year.

Professional Qualifications

Stateside Foods recognises the value in its people realising their potential, and so invests, by providing funding for them to gain professional qualifications, wherever appropriate for the needs of that person to succeed in their chosen career. In addition to the NVQ and degree level apprenticeships (see overleaf) and the student placements that we offer, our people are currently studying for professional qualifications in Health and Safety, Accountancy, Purchasing and Packaging Technology.


Stateside Foods has a long history of providing career paths for our people and we pledge to ensure that all employees have the opportunity to reach their full potential. As part of our commitment to supporting the next generation of talent, we have provided apprenticeships to young people for many years. Our apprenticeship schemes began in Engineering, but have since branched out to a number of key areas across our site, including Manufacturing, Accounts, IT, Planning.

We offer NVQ Level 3 apprenticeships in Engineering and degree level apprenticeships in Chartered Management and Mechanical Engineering, working in partnership with Manchester Metropolitan University and UCLAN respectively.

Our apprentice numbers have increased steadily over recent years as can be seen in the graph below.

Apprentice Personal Development

Our Personal Development Programme equips all of our apprentices with the skills required to succeed in business, from discovering personality profiles, to honing presentation skills and teambuilding.

As part of their apprenticeship, our Chartered Manager apprentices gain a Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Level 5 qualification, in addition to their degree qualification.

All apprentices are supported throughout their studies by the Learning and Development team and the Apprentice Mentoring team. They are given many experiences and opportunities within a safe learning environment.