NEWS REVIEW OF THE YEAR

first_imgCake supplier Inter Link said it had achieved its goal of becoming the UK’s number two cake supplier, with the £12.25m purchase of the Yorkshire Cottage Bakeries Group. The deal was the Blackburn-based firm’s ninth and largest acquisition and will put annualised turnover at approximately £125m a year, chief executive Paul Griffiths said. That puts Inter Link ahead of Northern Foods annual £110m cake turnover. But RHM was still ahead with a £300m cakes turnover. Bakers were urged to “keep up the good work” on salt reduction by Food Standards Agency chair Sir John Krebs. He praised plant bakers for achieving a 13% reduction in salt and urged them to “do it again”.Research from Imperial College London and the Royal Brompton Hospital showed a high incidence of asthma-related symptoms in bakers. A study of 239 bakers in 20 supermarket in-store bakeries found 26% had eye or nose symptoms, such as itchiness and excessive sneezing. New Rathbones’ Carlisle plant was gutted in a fire, which took 80 firefighters two days to bring under control. Sandwich businesses, including Pret A Manger, Greggs and the Sandwich Factory, were hit in the Sudan 1 crisis, withdrawing sandwiches made with spicy mayonnaise dressings made from contaminated Crosse & Blackwell Worcester sauce. Premier Foods, the British company that distributed the affected Worcester sauce, supplied it to more than 200 companies.Allied Bakeries launched a new Kingsmill bagel range supplied by Mr Bagels, in a challenge to market leader Maple Leaf Bakery, which produces the New York Bagel Co brand.Warburtons announced plans to launch a low-GI All in One Loaf – white bread with fibre and wheatgerm.last_img read more

Greggs ‘controlling costs’

first_imgRetaiL baker Greggs complained of rising energy costs as it reported flat like-for-like sales performance over the Christmas trading period, in a statement last week.Group MD Sir Michael Darrington said the group’s like-for-like sales in the second half, the 28 weeks to December 31, 2005, increased by 3%. Under-lying like-for-like sales growth was around 2%, after adjusting for the benefit of extra trading days over the Christmas period compared with 2004. Like-for-like sales over the Christmas and New Year period, the five weeks to January 7, were up by 5.4%. However, comparisons are distorted as there were additional trading days. Underlying like-for-like sales progress during this period was negligible, said Greggs.Despite substantial cost pressures during the year, notably in energy, it had made some progress in controlling costs in what is undoubtedly a more challenging trading environment, Sir Michael said. Greggs expects to report modest progress, in line with market expectations, in its preliminary results on March 10, he added. During 2005, Greggs opened 72 new shops and closed 16, giving a total of 1,319 outlets trading as Greggs and Bakers Oven as of December 31. This was ahead of target.last_img read more

Traditional Polish Bakery hits Irish expansion trail

first_imgThe Traditional Polish Bakery, set up in Dublin 12 months ago, is now expanding its nationwide distribution of traditional Polish bread lines.It is targeting an estimated 120,000 Polish people living in Ireland, with 100,000 of them in the greater Dublin area as well as Irish consumers.The man behind the bakery, at Ballymount in west Dublin, is 30-year-old Karol Tracz, who comes from southern Poland.Tracz arrived in Ireland two years ago to work in Information Technology, before spotting a gap in the bread market and setting up the bakery with a finan- cial partner.The products of Tracz’s firm, which currently employs 15 and is expanding staff numbers, are distributed through supermarket chains Centra, Londis, Spar and Super Valu as well as independent retailers, mostly in the Dublin area, but also in bigger towns and cities, such as Athlone and Cork.Over the next two months, distribution will be widened to many other areas of Ireland, outside greater Dublin.Tracz said that setting up a business in Ireland was far less bureaucratic than in his native Poland.But he added that he found it difficult to rent the premises because he wasn’t a native Irishman. “We’re not doing confectionery yet,we’re too busy keeping up with the demand for our bread, including three kinds of brown bread,” said Tracz.Half a dozen other bakeries in Ireland also produce Polish lines.last_img read more

Rademaker focuses on craft style

first_imgThe Rademaker Crusto bread line has been specially developed for large craft and industrial breadmakers to create artisan breads.Crusto’s cutting tools shape the bread without harming the structure, says the company. The Crusto’s ’cut bread’ technology allows bakers to work with strongly hydrated doughs, such as ciabatta for instance, and also with bulk-fermented doughs, to achieve a high-quality completely artisan look and structure.For products that need to be decorated with seeds, top and/or bottom, Rademaker has developed a special method. A continuous dough sheet runs over and/or under a moisturising roller, which makes the dough wet. This enables a universal strewer to deposit the seeds on top while a conveyor transfers them to the bottom. Any excess seeds fall down between the topping module and are recycled.The Crusto can make different size rolls, various shaped loaves and, for rounded products, there is the option of a fully integrated rounder. If required, a special calibrating module can de-gas the dough sheet for toast-style breads. The weighing module ensures very accurate weights, even with difficult doughs, says the company. Rademaker offers 24-hour service helpdesks plus nationwide engineering and technical help, controlled in the UK by its Bolton office.[http://www.rademaker.com]last_img read more

Mouthing off

first_img“It’s devastating – a £2 sandwich has cost me my business, my home and everything I’ve worked on for the last 35 years”- UK businessman Tony Scott rues the day he stopped for a £2 chicken sandwich, as thieves stole £500,000 worth of jewellery from the back seat of his car, when he left it for two minutes in a Tesco car park”It is because we are useless; we are the only nation in the world that puts up with things we don’t like. If the French were unhappy about the price of bread, they would give up buying bread until the price went down. But the English would just moan about it and buy an extra loaf!”- rock musician Rick Wakeman, speaking to the Chichester Observer, explains how being grumpy as a response to life’s frustrations is predominantly an English trait, using bread as an example”Sorry it has taken me so long to reply. I am hours away from going in to labour with my second baby. I will be up and about at the weekend and work on my entry. I’m really pleased it’s been extended I didn’t want to miss out.”- Kellie from the Cupcake Café expresses her relief that the deadline on BB’s National Cupcake Week cupcake competition has been extended, as she has another, rather more pressing appointmentlast_img read more

French fancy

first_imgParisian chocolatier Maison du Chocolat has launched a range of macaroons for the summer. They include: Passion a dark ganache infused with passion fruit between a light almond biscuit; Andalousie an almond macaroon filled with fresh lemon zest infused into a dark ganache; Porcelana a dark macaroon, with a ganache made from the rare Porcelana cocoa bean; Pistachio a pistachio ganache in an airy almond macaroon; and Noisette crunchy nuts in a dark ganache.The macaroons will be available in La Maison du Chocolat’s boutique and Harrods in summer.last_img

Irwin’s Bakery invests €1m in supply chain

first_imgIrwin’s Bakery will invest €1m into its Irish supply chain network during the next three years to create a direct route to retailers in the Dublin area.The family-owned business, based in Portadown, County Armagh, believes the investment will bring about an initial €750,000 increase in turnover during the next year.Irwin’s has supplied its retail customers in the south of Ireland via third party distribution centres, and directly to key retail partners Tesco Ireland and Dunnes Stores. However, the move – which includes buying new distribution vehicles – will provide a more efficient and direct level of contact with retailers. The company has also secured new distribution partners in the Cork and Tipperary area, providing improved accessibility to retailers in Munster. Brendan Lappin, business development manager, said: “For the independent retailer, having direct contact with a bakery supplier allows for two-way communication and improved efficiencies across orders, stock control and delivery management.”These developments are part of a wider strategy by the business, which includes investment in new product development; Irwin’s has recently launched four new product lines into Tesco Ireland from its Howell House branded cake and biscuit range.last_img read more

It’s a kind of (pancake) magic

first_imgPancake Day PR of the week comes from self-proclaimed food alchemists Bompas & Parr, who have created “the world’s first food-based magic set that lets you use your kitchen for a performance as magical as the most avant-garde restaurant”.Each set of which only 10 were made for Harvey Nichols contains “a miniature edible laboratory of potions, syrups, powders and pipettes to make pancakes that glow in the dark using the same enzymes as fireflies; fire projectiles across the kitchen; and even turn your pancake topping into real gold”.Damn and we were planning on giving up luminous flying gold pancakes for Lent too.last_img

Euphorium invests £1m in factory and shops

first_imgEuphorium Bakery is investing £1m in a new factory and shop, and has plans to open a further 20 new shops. The north London-based chain, which currently has seven outlets, is due to open the 7,500sq ft factory, 10 times the size of its previous production facility, in Islington this summer.Operations director Andrew Green said the company had outgrown its production bakery in its Highbury shop, and had delayed by two years the opening of a new shop in Threadneedle Street in the City of London, due to lack of production capacity. The new factory means the shop, the company’s eighth, will now open in the summer.Green said Euphorium Bakery had secured private funding that would enable it to expand rapidly to 30 shops over the next four years. This would increase turnover from £3.5m to between £15m and £20m, he added.Funding has come from several entrepreneurs who specialise in food retail. “We had several unsolicited approaches, which we decided to engage with,” said Green. “That process has been going on for the last six months.”The company is recruiting for directors, senior management and shop managers ahead of the expansion. “We are now interviewing to strengthen our board and management team and look forward to opening our new factory with some new team members ready to roll out our plans,” said Green. Twenty to 30 other staff will also be taken on.The company plans to expand its shops initially through acquisition. “We are at advanced stages of negotiation with two separate potential businesses,” said Green. “These two have eight shops between them, so we would have 16 in total. Ideally we’d like to have all 16 trading as Euphorium Bakery by late summer.”last_img read more

BSU Study: Robots could soon take over restaurant service

first_img Twitter WhatsApp Twitter Facebook Google+ Pinterest Pinterest WhatsApp Previous articleBeware scams targeting Amazon customers in IndianaNext articleNew traffic-focused officer unit created in St. Joseph County Jon ZimneyJon Zimney is the News and Programming Director for News/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel and host of the Fries With That podcast. Follow him on Twitter @jzimney. By Anthony92931 [CC BY-SA 3.0], from Wikimedia Commons You always hear about how robots will eventually take all of our jobs, but are we closer to the future than we think? The idea of robots taking our orders, making our hamburgers, or creating a mixed drink could become a reality.Professor Dina Zemke from the Miller College of Business at Ball State University did a study called “How to Build a Better Robot for Quick Service Restaurants,” and surveyed people who work in the food service industry their thoughts on robots.“Participants felt that the incorporation of robotic technology is a question of ‘when’ rather than a question of ‘if,’” Zemke said.She got the idea of the study because of restaurants making changes during the pandemic, having customers order ahead of time on an app, to reduce the amount of interaction inside the restaurant. Even before the pandemic, some fast-food restaurants turned to kiosks, where customers could order their meal on a touch screen.“But that’s not considered to be robotic, since it does not move,” Zemke said.So could actual robots take our order and make our sandwiches?“Everyone is a little suspicious of the voice-recognition technology,” she said. “One of the recommendations, pretty much across the board from the study participants, is don’t use that technology until it has been perfected.”Zemke says the conversations about possibly replacing human employees with robots might become legit if the conversations about raising the fast-food minimum wage to $15 continue.“If your labor costs continue to go up, there is now talk, of course, about ‘well, will restaurant owners replace employees with robots to do the work in the kitchen?’,” she said.The participants in Zemke’s study brought up pros and cons to having robots in restaurants and bars. They mentioned that robots don’t have to call in sick, and they don’t need to take breaks. At the same time, they only work at one pace.Zemke says she and her colleagues once went to a bar that had a robot bartender.“It was fun, it was entertaining and very interesting,” she said. “But the one thing we really noticed, especially since three of us were bartenders in the past, is that we could make drinks much, much faster than the robots could. So if you hit a period where you’re absolutely slammed and you got tons of people waiting for drinks or hamburgers or pizzas or whatever, the robots will not speed up, where as, humans can.”In the end, Zemke says there is still a lot of technology that needs to be developed before we’re all replaced by robots. IndianaLocalNews By Jon Zimney – September 25, 2020 0 327 Google+ BSU Study: Robots could soon take over restaurant service Facebooklast_img read more