Upmarket pie maker Higgidy has set out its stall to become a £10m brand next year - despite having missed its sales target for this year.

Higgidy sales have grown from £4m to £6m in the past year, falling short of the £8m target the company set almost exactly a year ago (The Grocer, p60, 24 May 2008). But James Footit, Higgidy's MD, said he was not disappointed and that the company was now looking to improve its manufacturing capacity so it could hit sales of £8m to £10m next year.

"We are negotiating with a neighbouring factory to expand our facility - this would be preferable to moving to a greenfield site, which would incur a hefty loan," he said.

A busy NPD programme would help the company reach its new target. "We are looking to have a presence in the food-to-go sector - Higgidy sausage rolls are top of the wish list and sweet pies could be on the agenda too," he revealed.

Last month's listing deals at Waitrose and Ocado, which Footit claimed were a "huge breakthrough", would generate further sales growth, he added.

Although the brand had sparked interest from the money men, Footit said he was not interested in outside investment.

"We have had a few trade and equity groups knocking on our door, but we want to retain control of the decision making," he said. "Significant outside investment would probably incur a demand to outsource manufacturing and distribute our products everywhere. This is not in our interests."

Footit claimed he was flattered that a number of retailer own-label pies had appeared to have imitated Higgidy's packaging design.

He also revealed that the brand's Skinny Pies range would next week be renamed Little Pies after Trading Standards complained about the health implications of the word 'skinny'.

"Our grounds were that because the pies were half the size of the standard range, they were skinny, although Trading Standards has been very reasonable about the whole thing," said Footit.