Bee’s Knees Bakes is based on Portland and was founded by Jen in 2021 after she decided to turn her love of baking into a small business. Having always watched her Mum and Nan bake, she developed basic skills throughout her childhood which became a much-loved hobby in her adult years. Jen had always given her bakes away to friends and colleagues due to making so much, where they were always very well received, and eventually gained the confidence to make it into a business with the support of her partner, Simon.
Within a few weeks, Simon was helping Jen with the baking due to the number of orders they were receiving. Simon had worked in a bakery with his Dad prior to serving 24 years in the Army, so this was a great opportunity to get back in touch with the career he began in. Simon now undertakes the majority of the baking, having taken this on full-time whilst Jen continues to work full-time for another company.
After six months, they had out-grown their own kitchen and began renting a purpose-built commercial kitchen on Portland. From this kitchen, they now produce a wide range of New York-style cookies, traybakes, cupcakes, no-bake cheesecakes and some of the best-tasting sausage rolls in the area! They currently supply a couple of local cafes with their baked goods and are looking to expand their customer base by visiting local markets. They are always looking for new things to bake and Simon especially is constantly researching new methods and techniques to further increase the product range they will be able to offer in the future.
Their next project is to begin bee-keeping! They have just completed a course introducing them to bee-keeping and are hoping to have their first hives set-up very soon. The honey produced by the bees from 2023 will be used across their baking range wherever possible and will hopefully be available to purchase along with other honey and wax related products.