You might not know it, but getting our products from development and into shops is a long and complicated road. First, we have to develop a product on paper – usually because we’ve identified a gap in the market – before creating it in our on-site laboratory. Once our team of lab technicians has settled on a particular product’s formulation – and conducted six months of performance and stability testing – it’s time for it to enter production.
The first stage of production is mixing, which takes place in our purpose-built mixing room. Here, ingredients are added to our steam-jacketed mixing pots in precise quantities before being blended together. If necessary, heat is added at this stage – we might do this if we’re adding beeswax, for instance! Once the product has finished mixing, we take a test sample to ensure consistency, before sending it into the filling area via a diaphragm pump.
In the filling area, any products that were heated up before are now cooled down, before they’re poured into traditional tins, bottles, and tubes. Interestingly, we don’t fill our tubes from the top, as you might expect – liquids and creams are instead inserted into the bottom of the tube, before a heated clamp crimps, bonds, and trims away any excess plastic! All of our products are poured via machinery, which is closely monitored, in order to maintain consistency across lines.
This kind of automation was only introduced in 2015, by our Production Standards Manager, John. With the addition of new Italian-made machines, and several rotary tables, John’s changes allowed the existing Granger’s International workforce to be distributed more efficiently throughout the factory. This combination of machinery and more traditional labour allows us to produce anywhere from 10,000 to 60,000 units per day – or around 15 million pieces a year.
With the products now filled into their respective tubs, tubes, or tins, any necessary lids are fitted by hand before each product is placed into boxes and packaging. Having a person perform this task provides an added element of quality control – any stock that isn’t perfect can be refilled or removed before it leaves our factory floor. A separate round of quality control is conducted by our in-house technicians at this stage too, with random samples being picked from the finished products in order to ensure the great performance our customers demand.
Finally, completed products are sent to our distribution centre, located a mile away from Junction 28 of the M1 motorway. From here, they’re distributed to over 50 countries worldwide, including Japan, Australia, Canada, and - of course - the United States. We also keep some products a little closer to home too – sending our polishes, cleaners, and waterproofers to supermarkets, independent retailers, discount stores, and sole traders all over the United Kingdom!