Kendal Nutricare, a pharmaceutical research company and healthcare product specialist owned by ambitious managing director and entrepreneur Ross McMahon, has pulled off a major coup by becoming the first British company to gain CNCA* accreditation. This allows Kendal Nutricare to export to China and launch and distribute its products within the world’s second largest economy. The accreditation was secured with the assistance of UK Trade & Investment (UKTI).

Kendal Nutricare purchased from H J Heinz the infant formula factory originally designed and built by Glaxo SmithKline on Mint Bridge Road in Kendal.  The healthcare-focused business is already shaking up the infant formula market by providing parents worldwide with a superior alternative to the existing powdered infant formulas available on shelves.

Working closely with Cumbrian farmers in the heart of Beatrix Potter country and neighbouring Lancashire, Kendal Nutricare is manufacturing infant formulas based on fresh, whole milk from local dairy herds – something no other infant formula producer is offering.  As parents are already discovering, this unique approach provides an infant with energy, as well as inducing better sleep.

By raising awareness of the benefits of its high quality Kendamil whole-milk formula for babies and toddlers in the UK, Kendal Nutricare is building a platform from which it can confidently export overseas.  Its product portfolio includes healthcare products for all ages, with adult complete meal powders infant and adult cereals, and anti-allergen and lactose-free powders being just some of its range.

Changing demographics within the expanding and lucrative Chinese market made it of particular interest to Kendal Nutricare.  With the leverage of already having established itself as a market leader that has produced formulas for world-renowned brands such as Boots, Nutricia and Heinz, the business is buoyant about the prospect of its products becoming a natural fit in China.

Ross McMahon says: “We identified the exciting growth prospects exporting to China could bring and have strategically created the Kendamil brand of infant powders and cereals that will appeal to Chinese consumers looking for premium English products. The relaxation of the one-child rule in China is set to create a boom in infant births that will see the demand for baby products soar. Our unique infant formula, with a whole-milk USP, will set a very high quality standard and should make us stand out from other brands and allow us to become the premium infant brand of choice in both UK and overseas markets.”

Ross McMahon adds: “The help and guidance from our local UKTI office, in particular Penny Wang-Orme, Rob Furse and Gordon Bettany has proved invaluable in the process of understanding and establishing our presence in China. We will continue to use their services as we look to further expand in Asia. I’d encourage other businesses across Cumbria and the north west to contact UKTI to find out how they can begin their export journey.”

Clive Drinkwater, north west regional director for UKTI said: “China is a huge and expanding market for UK businesses. UK exports have increased by over 37% in the last two years and we are determined to grow them even more. Kendal Nutricare’s story in China is an excellent example of the expertise we can export there, and of the valuable help and support UKTI is able to provide to companies seeking to establish themselves in China and other high growth markets around the world.  We are committed to supporting Ross and his team on every step of their incredibly exciting journey.”


*Certification and Accreditation Administration of the People’s Republic of China