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About Manufacturing and Production

Think of a few everyday objects: The chair you’re sitting on, the toaster you used this morning, the TV in your living room. How do these products get from their most basic components to a finished, functioning and retailed product?

Over two and a half million people are employed manufacturing goods in the UK, accounting for 44% of total exports. Manufacturing involves the conversion of parts, components or raw materials into products that meet customers’ expectations or specifications and usually consists of human and machine processes, with division of labour in large scale production lines and facilities.

Food, household products, industrial chemicals and equipment, vehicles, furniture, toys – the scope of products you could be involved in creating is vast, needing many skilled roles to support it. Production line operatives, warehouse managers, equipment technicians, packers, wood and metal workers, electricians, designers, software specialists to name just a few are all helping to make manufacturing a resurgent sector in the UK.

Thanks to online sales, smaller scale production is also booming, with many start-ups offering premium, custom made objects for utility or recreation, employing people with skills in arts and crafts, materials such as woodwork and now plastic through the rise of 3-D printing.

Many of Norfolk’s manufacturing employers – especially those in food and related processing – are experiencing significant growth and this is expected to be sustained. Examples include Bernard Matthews, Kettle Foods (Kettle Chips), Kinnerton, Pasta Foods and Hain Daniels (producing Linda McCartney products and the Sainsbury’s ‘Taste the Difference’ dessert range).

If you want to be part of a team that constructs things from the ground up, from plans to packaged product, you should consider a career in this sector.

Did You Know?
The UK is currently the world's ninth largest industrial nation, manufacturing makes up 10% of GVA and 45% of UK exports, and directly employs 2.7 million people.

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