Inside the Factory is a television series produced by Voltage TV for BBC. Each episode explores how a specific product is made inside a factory. The series is presented by Gregg Wallace and Cherry Healey, with historian Ruth Goodman providing a look at how products came to exist as we know them today.
Gregg and Cherry visit the Kingsmill factory in West Bromwich to learn the secrets of how they make bread. Cherry looks at how to make your bread last longer and Ruth shows what hidden items used to be found in bread.
6 May 2015
Gregg visits the Nestlé factory in York and Cherry visits the Thornton's factory in Derbyshire to learn the secrets of how they make chocolate. Ruth meets some people who used to work on the first chocolate production lines.
7 May 2015
Gregg and Cherry visit the Arla factory in Aylesbury to learn the secrets of how they process milk, Cherry also learns how Cheese is produced and visits Unilever to learn how they make ice cream. Ruth investigates the history of milk.
Gregg and Cherry visit the Kellogg's factory in Manchester to learn the secrets of how they make cereal, specifically Crunchy Nut Corn Flakes. Cherry also visits the Weetabix factory, looks at how wheat is grown and how they add additional vitamins and minerals to cereals. Ruth looks at what people used to eat for breakfast before cereal was invented.
Gregg and Cherry visit the Walkers factory in Leicester to learn the secrets of how they make crisps, specifically Cheese and Onion. Cherry looks at what makes a perfect potato for making crisps and how your brain can be tricked into thinking you are eating something different. Ruth looks at who invented crisps.
Gregg and Cherry visit the Brompton factory in West London to learn the secrets of how they make folding bicycles. Cherry gets tips from Team GB to improve her cycling speed and she also learns how bicycles are painted to cope with adverse weather. Ruth looks at important moments in history that used bicycles including the D-Day landings.
Gregg and Cherry visit the Swizzels Matlow factory in Derbyshire to learn the secrets of how they make different sweets. Cherry learns how they put writing into rock and how different nations have different tastes in sweets. Ruth investigates how sweets were first invented.
Gregg and Cherry visit the New Balance factory in Cumbria to learn the secrets of how they make trainers. Cherry looks at how leather is processed as well how ballet shoes are produced. Ruth traces the origins of trainers, specifically to Reebok.
Gregg and Cherry visit the Typhoo factory to learn the secrets of how they make their teabags. Cherry looks at the process of how the tea leaves first start out before being shipped off to the factories.
Gregg and Cherry visit the McVitie's factory to look at the production of chocolate digestive biscuits. Cherry looks at the preparation of the chocolate and the creation of the bronze moulds used to make biscuits.
18 December 2017
In this Christmas special, Gregg Wallace, Cherry Healey and Ruth Goodman explore the fascinating factory processes and surprising history behind favourite festive treats. Gregg follows 24 hours of production at a cake factory in Oldham. Meanwhile, Cherry is given special access to Britain's largest marzipan factory. Ruth Goodman adds her own Christmas revelations by investigating how early industrial heritage inspired Charles Dickens to write a Christmas Carol, and why Christmas tree lights are called fairy lights.
Gregg explores the Sealord factory in Caistor near Grimsby that processes 165 tonnes of fish a week and produces 80,000 cod fish fingers every day. Cherry travels to Iceland where they land up to 50 tonnes of cod a day and sees how frozen fish is processed.
9 January 2018
Gregg is in the Netherlands at a sauce factory that produces a quarter of a million tonnes of condiments every year. Cherry is at a vast factory in Maastricht, where a furnace holding 250 tonnes of molten glass has been running continuously for the last 11 years. Historian Ruth discovers how Brits fell in love with mayonnaise.
Gregg explores Ribena's Gloucestershire factory. It turns 90 per cent of Britain's blackcurrants into soft drinks, producing three million bottles a week. Cherry is harvesting the berries on a farm in Kent - one of 40 that supply the factory. She also heads to the Netherlands to a plant that recycles plastics. Ruth investigates the origins of fizzy drinks.
Gregg and Cherry visit the Nescafé factory in Derbyshire to learn the secrets of how they make 175,000 jars of freeze dried instant coffee daily. Cherry learns about the chemistry of coffee and Ruth visits the UK's very first coffee house which dates back to 1652.
Gregg explores the Cushelle factory in Manchester after visiting Sweden to see how trees are harvested. Cherry visits Britain's oldest toilet factory, where they churn out 1,000 loos a day. Ruth finds out what was used to wipe with before the invention of toilet paper.
Gregg explores the Heck sausage factory in North Yorkshire that produces 625,000 sausages each day whilst Cherry visits the University of Chester to get the lowdown on getting the best out of our bangers. Historian Ruth Goodman heads to Germany to establish how sausages came to be.
Gregg explores the Sharwood's factory in Worksop, Nottinghamshire which makes 250,000 jars of Curry sauce each day. Historian Ruth takes a look back at the origin of Curry, cooking up a recipe from 1747. Cherry heads to Guntur, India to harvest chillis and follow them on their journey into powder ready to make up Curry sauce.
17 December 2018
Gregg visits a factory which produces a staggering 2,000,000 tins of festive chocolate assortments a year, while Cherry travels to Germany where she joins a crew of 35 ornament decorators, applying glitter and paint to an army of glass Santas. In the UK, she goes behind the scenes at the Royal Mail as the Christmas stamps are printed. Ruth investigates the trail of the Christmas turkey.
Gregg visits the Birds Eye factory in Lowestoft, at an enormous factory where they produce 450 tonnes of frozen food each day. Meanwhile Cherry Healey is learning about the differences between waxy and floury potatoes and finding out which spud you should use for which job. Historian Ruth Goodman is myth busting Walter Raleigh’s connection to potatoes.
Gregg is in Italy, at an enormous pizza factory where they produce 400,000 frozen pizzas each day. Meanwhile Cherry Healey is asking if mozzarella – the traditional choice for pizzas - is also the scientific best bet. Historian Ruth Goodman is investigating the technology that allows frozen foods like pizza to be transported across the globe.
Gregg is in Burton upon Trent at Britain’s biggest brewery, where they produce 3 million pints of beer a day. He follows the production of Britain’s best-selling lager from raw barley to finished cans. Meanwhile, Cherry Healey is learning how four basic ingredients – water, malted barley, hops and yeast – can be manipulated to make dark, heavy ales, light, fragrant lagers and everything in between. She is also uncovering the secrets of the perfect pint in a scientific study. Historian Ruth Goodman is asking why Burton became the centre of brewing in Britain in the 19th century.
Gregg Wallace is in Germany, at a historic factory which produces 600,000 pencils a day. He also discovers why pencils are hexagon. Meanwhile, Cherry Healey is at Manchester University examining the astonishing properties of graphite. She is also investigating the science behind graphology and asking if we can evaluate personality from handwriting style. Historian Ruth Goodman is on the trail of the very earliest pencils in the Lake District.
Gregg Wallace is in Gateshead at a cheese factory where they produce 3,000 tonnes of spreadable cheese every year. He follows the production of jalapeno chilli flavour cheese from a 28,000 litre delivery of milk to 5,400 squeezy tubes. Meanwhile, Cherry Healey is finding out how bacteria are responsible for the huge variety in smell, taste and appearance of different types of cheese. Historian Ruth Goodman is finding out how cheddar, originally just one of hundreds of regional varieties in the UK, became the predominant hard cheese world wide.