But as managing director Grace Clements explains, business needs to be worked on and innovation is vital.
This approach has been the cornerstone of FMM’s success in recent years and, as the company celebrates 70 years in business, this way of working is set to continue. Grace took over the business from her parents 15 years ago and has certainly seen many changes over the years as she has grown the brand into what it is today.
Where did it all begin for FMM Sugarcraft?
Well, we’re celebrating our 70th birthday this year and back in 1948 my parents (Joe and Mary Clements) started the business making filter coffee bags working from home. They then expanded into making piping tubes, piping bags, and aprons for the catering trade.
During the 1990’s the business expanded further when we saw a gap in the market for sugarcraft tools and cake decorating equipment and so made the decision to develop this area. This also coincided with the development of sugarpaste as a medium for covering cakes and decorating cakes. Our first product was a simple carnation cutter that we used to test interest and we haven’t looked back!
70 years in business is a fantastic achievement, how does FMM stand out from other companies in the sector and what do you attribute your success to?
From the start, my parents quickly realised that to build a sustainable business we needed to offer superior customer service and this is still true today. Putting customers at the heart of our company has been key to our success and is an underlying core value of our family business. In addition, bringing new and innovative products to our customers is essential to staying ahead in this competitive market. None of this of course would be achieveable without the dedicaton of my hardworking team! We’re here for the long term rather than a quick buck.
What are your most popular products?
We are probably best known for our innovative tappit range which is ideal for making letters, numbers and shapes to decorate cakes and plaques. We continue to add new fonts and shapes to the range to keep up with current trends. Our ‘Easiest Ever’ range has revolutionised the way people make sugar flowers because it takes minutes and not hours to make a selection of pretty flowers. In addition to our first product, the easiest rose over two years ago, we now have a carnation, peony and a beautiful ranunculus set in the range.
The popularity of our novelty cutter range which includes a set of fluffy clouds, mermaid tails, a unicorn and much more has been amazing! Not only are these products great for beginners as they are so easy and simple to use, they are real time savers for busy cake professionals, where time is money! We stand by our products which are all backed by a lifetime guarantee.
Explain why manufacturing in the UK is important to FMM Sugarcraft
From concept through to design and manufacture, everything is done in the UK. This gives us control of the whole process, from ensuring that the initial drawings are clear all the way through to checking prototypes. Any issues or problems can be picked up straight away and addressed without delay. Everything is done on site here in the UK so we can ensure the consistent quality and the food grade standards of our products. It also means that our range is in constant supply, not having to wait weeks for a boat to arrive from China or other far flung places!
How do you plan to celebrate FMM’s 70th birthday?
We have created an anniversary logo and are developing a special anniversary product, plus we’ve got a new brochure and new website. We are also hosting a networking celebration event at the One Big Show in association with AFCI at the Mercure Daventy Court Hotel at the end of June. And of course we will be making our own birthday cake!
If you'd like to find out more about FMM Sugarcraft and their exceptional products, take a look at their site www.fmmsugarcraft.com!