A new chocolate factory is opening in Suffolk, and is set to be up and running by Easter.

Malaysian company GCB (Guan Chong Berhad) Cocoa will manufacture liquid and solid chocolate at the factory near Sudbury.

The unit is on track to be operational from April.

The 17-acre site in Lower Road in Glemsford has been under construction since last year.

The site was a Philips Avent baby products factory until it closed in July 2020, affecting 425 jobs and leaving concerns over employment in the area.

East Anglian Daily Times: Philips Avent in Glemsford. Picture: Phil Morley

The chocolate company took over the site in November 2020, promising to invest £62.2million into the plant and restore 220 jobs, with planning permission granted in December 2021.

Councillor Stephen Plumb, ward member for Glemsford, said: "It is good news. We need employment for the area, which has suffered greatly since Philips Avent closed two years ago, one of the biggest employers in Suffolk."

MP for South Suffolk James Cartlidge visited the new factory and said he was "delighted" to hear its progress.

Mr Cartlidge said: “It’s fantastic news that one of the world’s leading cocoa companies will be producing high quality chocolate in the heart of our rural district to service household name suppliers across the UK.

"In these challenging economic times it’s vital that we remember the many economic positive stories that are happening, and GCB’s inward investment into South Suffolk already represented a very significant vote of confidence in our economy – but now it’s going to become tangible, with a finished product to be proud of.

East Anglian Daily Times:

East Anglian Daily Times:

"I look forward to working further with the company as they drive forward on their path to production, and then ongoing growth”.

GCB also confirmed that Phase 2 of the site plan is expected to be operational by the middle of next year.

The company added that they were actively recruiting in the area and welcome any recruitment enquiries to: ukrecruitment@euk.favorich.com