The Hawkshead Relish Company is a success story that turned a potential disaster into a triumph – and while we can’t take credit for co-owner Mark Whitehead’s creative talents in the Hawkshead Relish kitchen, every product is cooked using AvantiGas LPG.

The company produces a range of more than 120 relishes, pickles and preserves and increasing sales year after year with complete consistency. Their commitment to excellence and innovation has seen them guesting on Ready Steady Cook and presenting their products to HM the Queen as well as delighting customers everywhere.

The Challenge

The company has always used LPG to cook its ever-expanding range and was born out of adversity back in 2001 when the national epidemic of foot and mouth disease in cattle restricted movement around the countryside and made tourists reluctant to visit. Mark and Maria’s Hawkshead village café suffered as a result, but Mark’s relishes and preserves were always popular with café customers. So with fewer customers coming to him, he took his products to them, selling to delis, hotels, garden centres, restaurants and stately homes. Then the couple took the plunge, converted the café to a shop showcasing their own products, and they have never looked back.

What we did

AvantiGas came into play around five years ago, when expanding production for Hawkshead Relish products from sales all over the UK and increasing exports (they’re now in around 40 countries) made a reliable and economical LPG supplier all the more vital.

The results

Every year more and more discerning foodies choose to take Mark’s advice to “embellish with relish” and Mark and Maria’s commitment to excellent ingredients and innovative recipes continues to win awards. One of Mark’s most recent creations, Black Garlic Ketchup, is flying off the shelves and has already won five awards, most recently at The World Food Innovation Awards where it was named Best Condiment. Their Westmorland Chutney is another firm favourite while other new products include Salted Banoffee Mudd. The shop, nearby lakeside production base and Ambleside labelling unit provide employment for 30 local people.

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If you’d told me 20 years ago what I’d be doing now I wouldn’t have believed you. Mark Whitehead, the Hawkshead Relish Company