Westaways' hot leads cold calling

A West Country sausage company has been 'cold-calling' on firms in France and building a lucrative export trade as a result.

"I knew there was a market there for quality sausages, so I literally knocked on a few doors," said Charles Baughan of Devon-based Westaways.

The company is now doing steady business on the Cote D'Azur and St Tropez where there are a lot of ex-pat Brits. About a tonne of sausages a week is being sold into France.

This is not Westaway's first foray onto foreign soil. The company, which has been run by well-known Exeter butcher Steve Turton for the past four years, also trades in Portugal where it sells about a tonne of sausages a week to 180 small shops and a few larger stores.

Like-for-like sales have increased by 30% this year and exports now represent nearly 5% of the company's turnover. "I would like to double the amount of sausage sold abroad to about five tonnes a week within three years," said Baughan.

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