A firm whose high-tech equipment is used all over the world has scooped the £1,000 award for for business excellence at the Platinum Business Awards.

Malvern Instruments also picked up a £500 manufacturing award sponsored by Clarke Roxburgh in the annual awards run by Malvern Hills District Council.

News of the the firm's success was welcomed by managing director Paul Walker, just back from a business trip to the USA.

"It's very good for the morale of our employees and it's also important in helping us attract the skills we need to support our future growth," he said.

As chairman of the Enigma Business Park partnership, Mr Walker was also pleased that the publicity generated by the awards could attract other world-class businesses to the town.

Malvern Instruments employs around 250 people, including 100 overseas, in China, Japan, Europe, the USA and South America. Its instruments, designed for measuring particles, have many thousands of different application in industries including pharmaceuticals, food and drink, cement and minerals.

Mr Walker said: "All our customers need to understand and characterise particles because they are critical to the design of their product, whether it is cement or inhalers for asthmatics.

"For instance, Cadbury was able to develop the Wispa bar by controlling the size of cocoa particles in the chocolate.

"About a quarter of our business is in pharmaceuticals and another quarter in chemicals. After that, you are talking about almost any other application you can think of, in 85 countries world wide."

The company has an annual turnover of more than £30 million and 90 per cent of its production is exported, a quarter going to the Far East and another quarter to the USA.

Collaboration on product development is currently being discussed with Sysmex, a Japanese company which produces medical equipment.

l Applications scientists Darrell Bancarz and Tina Rowney with managing director Paul Walker tuck into Wispa bars developed using the firm's techology.