A combination of traditional Caribbean business philosophy, mixed with a responsible modern-day approach to business has secured Cleone Foods Ltd, the accolade of being overall winner of 2012 Santander Responsible Small Company Awardat this year’s Business in the Community’s (BITC) Awards for Excellence, held in London on Wednesday 27th June and attended by HRH The Prince of Wales.
Cleone Foods Managing Director, Wade Lyn, commenting on the company’s award win said: “The Caribbean culture is always to make sure, even in circumstances of sometimes abject poverty, that everyone is included and looked after by working together, as would happen in an extended family.
“Receiving the Santander Responsible Small Company Award is formal acknowledgement that our vision of community responsibility, creating a positive culture benefitting our employees, our customers and suppliers and that of the wider community, works.”
Launched over twenty years ago in 1986 and an authorised supplier for London 2012, Cleone Foods is a small family business manufacturing Jamaican Patties, with MD Wade Lyn making a conscious decision that wherever possible he would make responsible business activity a core strategy for growth, based on a desire to “do the right thing”, a strong Influence on him as a young boy growing up in Jamaica.
Cleone Foods produce authentic Caribbean patties under the Island Delight brand, and was the first company in the UK to produce an authentic Caribbean product sold through supermarkets which used only original Jamaican recipes. The national Awards for Excellence recognise companies which demonstrate continuing impact and inspirational programmes which make a positive impact on the local community, the environment or the wider society.
Said Wade: “Sourcing from other local independent businesses helps support both the local economy and the community, both in Birmingham and the Caribbean.
“Our ethos of using locally sourced products and staying true to our roots is at the heart of everything they do. Having family friendly policies also helps facilitate local employment for those with school-aged children, promoting from within via staff development programmes, as we favour retention to external recruitment, a policy which continues to sustain our company growth.”
David Darlaston, Director of Business in the Community West Midlands said, “I congratulate Wade and everyone at Cleone Foods for beating off the competition to be the overall winner of the Santander Responsible Small Company Award. Cleone clearly demonstrate that you can run a small business both responsibly and profitably, as well as supporting people in one of the more deprived communities.”
Joining the other esteemed and royal guests in London were Suggs, double Olympic gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes and Paralympian Liz Johnson, with the event hosted by Mishal Husain from the BBC.