Apuro (Solihull, West Midlands) is introducing a technologically advanced double milk shaker and frappé machine, which it says is aimed at satisfying demand for increasingly sophisticated drinks in today’s café society.The Sirio 2VV, suitable for preparing coffees, cocktails, sorbets and frothy frappés, has a three-whisky mixing system. Each independently operated whisky is powered by a 100-watt motor and fits inside a plexiglass jug. The machine, which has a shiny aluminium finish, is supplied with two easy-to-attach mixing jugs, each fitted with a micro-switch to prevent accidents.
Around 1,000 people, 95% of staff, took part in a one-day strike at Park Cake Bakeries in Oldham on Monday – the first strike since 1976 at the bakery.The Bakers’, Food and Allied Workers’ Union organised the 24-hour strike over redundancy plans.Some 400 staff are currently on a 90-day redundancy notice to the start of May, following the take-over of the bakery by Vision Capital. Roy Streeter, the union’s regional officer, said he was waiting to meet senior management and see how the debate could be moved forward. He said: “We do not want to put Park Cake at risk.We want to protect our members’ terms and conditions.”It is understood the dispute centres around the redundancy terms offered by the new owners, which, it is claimed, compare unfavourably with those previously in place with former owner Northern Foods. “Some members could lose as much as £20,000,” said Streeter.Park Cakes said in a statement: “The company was disappointed by the action taken by the Union. It was a 24-hour strike, which is now finished and our service to our retail customers was not affected.”Plans to make 90 job losses at Park Cakes’ second bakery in Bolton, which makes slab cakes for the major multiples, have been called off. The Oldham bakery’s main customer is Marks & Spencer.
The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) Food and Drink Group, Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Federation of Bakers and National Association of Master Bakers (NA) are running an event entitled ‘Flour dust – respiratory disease in the food industry’, on Wednesday, 21 January, 2009 at The Turbine in Worksop, Nottingham.The programme of talks cover issues such as local exhaust ventilation (LEV) systems, control strategies, good occupational hygiene practice and COSHH Regulations 2002. There will also be an open forum in the afternoon. It costs £35.25 incl VAT for IOSH members and £47 incl VAT for non-members. For more details, call Kat Wright on 0116 257 3245, fax 0116 257 9245 or email [email protected]
I couldn’t decide whether it’s genius or a disaster…” was one onlooker’s response after being introduced to the twin-cyclone effect of the Lewis brothers and their artisan bakery concept.The multi-entrepreneur siblings – and forces of nature – gifted delegates at the Scottish Association of Master Bakers’ annual conference with a masterclass in breathless presentation and, in doing so, wrote a whole new chapter in the book of public speaking.From farmers to chefs to plant hirers to hoteliers to chip shop owners – the bakers-without-a-pause took an atypical career path into bakery. Two years ago, they stumbled into the trade when they bought the local bakery in Callander (swear words removed to protect our more delicate readers). “It all came about in our chip shop,” remembers elder brother Tom. “Someone came in and said [adopts thick Scottish accent] ’Wanna buy my bakery? You boys wud f******* love it!’”Sold on the superb location, they bit. “Cocky b****** that I was, I thought ’I’m going to make all leaven breads, they’re going to be lovely and crusty, free-moulded and amazing. People have been buying s**** for a long time and it’s disgraceful. The first thing I did was take away the chemicals from everything we did.”Along with brother Dick, they set about making artisan breads and traditional fare like Black Buns, Buttered Bannocks and Perkins under the Mhor Bread brand, which they’d already applied to the hotel and chip shop. “I bought the Mhor name a long time ago because I thought there was something in it. I had this thing in my head – ’Mhor’ – it looks good big and I like red, so we had it big and red,” is Tom’s perfect reasoning.They developed the chip shop over four years to the point where they now buy all their fish off the boat and customers will pay up to £18 for a fish supper. “I’m only able to charge a lot of money – and some people say I should be wearing a mask – because people trust what we put into the food, or what we don’t put into the food. We’ve taken the same principles into baking,” he enthuses. “We must have the most expensive pies in Scotland!” chips in brother Dick.Then the inevitable happened – Greggs came to town. “We thought ’here we go’,” sighs Dick. But at the end of the first week of Greggs opening, takings were still going up. “With the quality of product we have at the bakery, and with people paying the extra price, I see my customer in both shops; they go into Greggs for bits and pieces, the take-out stuff, but they’re back to us for the stuff they’re taking home. And they’re paying more for it.”One bonus from running Mhor Bread – which also has a tearoom and sells celebration cakes – has been a revival of the ailing farm they inherited from their parents. “We were struggling to sell lambs for £7 and we sold all our breeding cows years ago,” Tom recalls. “Now, the farm has been built up. We have a butchery and we supply the bakery with meat at a good price. We only produce mutton pies for two months of the year because I’ve only got that many sheep!”The hardest thing, he says, has been finding the time to communicate that ethos to the customer. “We worked out we could physically go for two days straight then we’d have to have five hours’ sleep. The problem with bakery is you work all bloody night and then you have to be up all day to see the customers.”A shortage of time and the cost and unavailability of skilled labour means they will be investing in machinery. “Yes, a piece of kit might be £80,000, but the reality is it’s saved you four guys. And it’s only £80,000 once,” he explains. They have also bought a wood pellet oven, which has reduced energy costs enough to allow them to add an afternoon shift. The aim is to build up to 24-hour production. “We’re still a long way from efficiency. We’re still trying to build our team up,” says Dick.Tom readily admits there are a lot of improvements yet to be made to bring quality up to the top-notch standards they’ve set themselves. “I want our bakers to think like chefs, and I know that’s a terrible thing…” he risks, to a somewhat partisan crowd. “But there’s only one way to put a pie lid on a pie – the correct way. And you don’t change that overnight. You have to lead by example. And I might take a bit longer to put the lid on my pie, but I think it looks good, and if I’m going to charge 20p more than anyone else, people have to perceive that.”So it all boils down to whether this irreproachable business ethos is genius or not in execution. “We’re basically blokes, right?” says Tom. “We’re scruffy, we buy clothes from charity shops. We have a sister, Melanie, who makes things look pretty. But she hates us! She likes a business plan; she wants to know how much money to spend. I say deal with it, we haven’t got any money. If it’s a good day, take £50 out of the till. Maybe that’s not the right way to do it…” But that’s the best kind of genius in our eyes.—-=== Business tips: SAMB conference highlights ===Sir Michael Darrington (pictured), former chief executive of Greggs, on range rationalisation”What we’ve found is whenever we have a major range rationalisation in-store, and fewer lines, our sales go up. Why? Because we’ve got better availability and better quality. If you make three of this and four of that, two of this and 10 of that, you can be all over the place in terms of quality. If you make a lot of a product, it really settles down and you get a high standard. Where we have a more finely defined range, after looking at the customer trends, it’s simpler and there’s less waste. A smaller range is well worth doing.”Jason Turner, Abertay University, on gathering customer feedback”We encourage organisations to get involved in focus groups. We try to get 8-10 groups of customers together and we would also promote products to them. It’s your way to communicate with and inform the customer. It’s actual, real behaviour that you want to learn, not what TNS or Mintel are saying. That’s where a lot of companies are making mistakes, by making decisions based upon [market data]. Ultimately, you want customers to feel valued. And it doesn’t have to be through formal mechanisms. You’ll be surprised how much information you can get through your staff.”Campbell Laird, Three Brands consultancy, on developing a brand”Companies often think they have a brand, but what they have is a product. A brand should ideally have these key parts: a set of brand values, brand positioning, a very specific tone of voice in how you communicate, a brand proposition and a great quality product. If you’ve got that, you’ve probably got a strong brand and a way of differentiating yourself from the competition.”
Norman Olley, a well-known baker and one of Rick Stein’s food heroes, has closed his business in Dereham, Norfolk, after falling sales left him with no choice.The self-proclaimed “campaigning baker” told British Baker he blamed the increasing dominance of the supermarkets, for the falling number of consumers coming to buy bread from his shop. “I’ve been trying to fight the big boys and everything they represent… but now they’ve finally got me,” he said.The North Elmham bakery, which Olley had run for 34 years, shut its doors on Saturday 16 January, after he had run through his finances the day before and realised he didn’t know where the money was going to come from to pay the bills and his staff their wages. “I thought it best to walk away now, rather than be pushed,” he said.The business, which employed eight people, comprised a shop in Dereham and a stall at Norwich market. The bakery also supplied between 30 and 40 wholesale clients in the local area, including schools.Sales had fallen over the past year, explained Olley. “A year ago I was taking around £1,500 a week on the market stall, but this has dropped to £500, and the business had been turning over around £5,000 a week, but this had dropped by around £1,200 a week on average.”Olley said he’d noticed falling customer numbers over the past five years as people chose to shop at the supermarket for their bread instead. Looking back, he said he probably should have closed about five years ago, “but being a baker you run business from your heart rather than your head”.
Proper Cornish has set a new world record for the heaviest handmade pasty, weighing in at almost 1 tonne.The pasty was made as part of a new TV series, Monster Munchies, to be screened on the Good Food channel on 8 November, and measured over 4 metres in length and 1.4 metres wide. It was officially weighed at Proper Cornish’s factory in Bodmin, Cornwall, before being delivered to Fowey where it was measured and tasted before being cut up and distributed to hundreds of spectators. The previous record was 400kg. Proper Cornish went head-to-head with another local food producer to make the largest Cornish pasty possible in 24 hours for the new series, which celebrates Britain’s best food by supersizing some classic dishes. The firm was crowned champions of the bake-off by five local judges.“The logistics of making such a large pasty were challenging to say the least, as the final product had to taste good as well as being enormous,” commented Phil Ugalde, chairman of Proper Cornish Food Company.The ingredients included 165kg of beef skirt, 352kg of potatoes, 106kg of swede, 96kg of onion and 381kg of pastry.“We even had to build a new oven to cook it, and delivering it to Fowey involved a JCB, a forklift, a lorry and a lot of manpower,” he added.
The great thing about bakery products is they speak for themselves. You cannot beat the golden glow of freshly made croissants or smiling gingerbread men, free of packaging.Contrast this, for example, with supermarket crisps, with their all-singing-and-dancing packaging that reveals more air than product once open.Yet packaging nonetheless plays a crucial, if not more subtle, role in the bakery mix, from environmentally-friendly paper bags in which fresh loaves are dispensed to the likes of Colpac’s Fuzione sandwich packs that boost visibility, improve stackability and feature a “snap-lok” system to maintain freshness once the pack is opened.Tri-Star Packaging says the food and beverage industry is completely dependent on quality and presentation. Matthew Slade-Pedrick, a buyer at the company, which supplies everything from sandwich wedges to disposables, says: “Packaging is massively important. People buy with their eyes. It makes product look good, it’s tidy, it stops contamination and it enhances the look. It also gives branding and marketing opportunities.”Keeping it greenNowadays, packaging’s green credentials are key and Martin Kersh, administrator at the Food Packaging Association, says many new clever developments combine environmental considerations with style. With disposable foodservice items, issues include disposability and convenience. “You are able to promote the company on the packaging, the consumer should be able to enjoy the product without the risk of excess heat or cold, and the packaging should keep the product in pristine condition between purchase and an acceptable time of consumption.”Kersh does not believe the packaging industry is over-using or under-using materials, but he says fewer materials are going into packaging without sacrificing effectiveness, style and visibility. “Sandwich boxes need to look the right size for the sandwich and not make it look bigger than it is.” He adds that there is not much point in having a product that is “recyclable” if the cost of recycling it is more than the cost of production.”Jim Winship, director of the British Sandwich Association, says everyone is focused on sustainability and trying to reduce packaging. He reckons that the big problem for people selling sandwiches is that the consumer carries them to their office and then the packaging tends to be dumped in the bin, so even if it is environmentally-friendly, it might not end up in recycling facilities.”A lot of people think cardboard is better, but corn-starch plastic is best,” says Winship. “A lot depends on what recycling facilities there are in the local area.”The importance of the environmental issue should not be overlooked. Research from Huhtamaki, the global packaging company that supplies the BioWare range, found nearly a third of those questioned felt sustainability and environmental considerations had affected their business. Its products include bio-coated paper cuts, suitable for hot drinks, and strongholder carry trays for several cups to reduce the possibility of spillage. Bakery packaging analysed The Future of European Food and Drink Packaging to 2015, just published by packaging industry research organisation Pira International, notes that a high proportion of baked products are sold unpackaged.Most baked products are sold in flexible packaging pouches and films. Flexible films are principally used for the higher added-value pre-packed Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) products, such as ordinary breads, croissants, pancakes, speciality breads and cakes. Baked goods are a significant market for folding cartons and plastic trays, with the major demand being for cakes, biscuits and morning goods. The report says metal trays are also benefiting from growth in sales of packaged cakes. Barrier film packaging helps to extend the shelf-life of fresh baked foods and innovative film structures enhance presentation. Pira says some of the reasons why barrier films for baked products are expected to grow much faster than all films include an increased share of premium products, increased pressure on shelf-life as metallised bread wrap extends shelf-life and promotes differentiation and the fact that sandwich bread in MAP will replace frozen bread for foodservice.
Limagrain Céréales Ingrédients (LCI), established in 2002, is part of the Limagrain Group, an international farmer-owned co-operative based in France’s Auvergne region. It provides functional solutions around 100 different products for five different markets: bakery, snacks, convenience foods, breakfast cereals and bioplastics. For bakery, it produces functional flours, enzymes, improvers, pre-mixes and fibres, under its Dafa, Sofalia and Westhove brands.Marketing director David Pearson says production at its Westhove site, which proces-ses maize, wheat, rice, oat, barley and rye, is currently running at full capacity 30,000 tonnes per year but there are plans to extend production, as the firm looks to grow its business in the UK and across northern Europe. He adds that LCI has seen around a 11-12% increase in sales in the past year, with the annual growth rate between 10-15% since 2002. “Our ambition is to double the size of the business in the next three years, through internal growth, joint ventures and acquisitions,” he explains.In terms of LCI’s global sales of bakery ingredients, France is its key market, but it also supplies the UK, Germany and the US, as well as Eastern Europe and Russia. Future growth in functional flours, at least, is likely to come from countries that have the most highly developed production processes those in northern Europe adds Pearson.To create its functional flours LCI uses a technique called the Farigel process a heat treatment that delivers special functionalities to the cereals. Following the milling of cereal kernels, the flour, bran and fibres undergo a hydro-thermic treatment, before they are ground and sieved.The firm claims there are a number of benefits to using its ingredients for example improving the thickening, binding and hydration of products to alter the texture for added crunchiness, to change the taste or colour and to provide added nutritional benefits such as extra fibre or minerals.Waxy wheatOne of the products developed by Limagrain through the Farigel process is ’waxy wheat’, a specific composition of starch, made up of 100% amylopectine, which can help prevent staling. It can be used to replace modified starch, is freeze thaw-resistant, and can also be used to replace fat in different applications. The gelatisation can be stopped at different levels, to achieve certain viscosities useful in, for example, stopping a layer of puréed fruit from sinking to the bottom of a cake. LCI’s masa flour is suitable for use in soft wrap tortillas, and tortilla chips, while its functional flours can also be used in pastry, such as in profiteroles, to keep it softer for longer.LCI says there are two key issues that customers and manufacturers are looking for: health and cost savings. “People don’t buy snacks to be healthy, but a lot of people don’t buy snacks because they aren’t healthy,” says Anne Lionnet, marketing manager bakery products. With this in mind, LCI has just launched a number of new functional products, designed to meet these trends, offering three solutions for different bakery applications: the first solution was the use of waxy wheat to reduce the fat in brownies; the second was the use of waxy wheat to reduce the fat in bread; and the third was a new ingredient, Hydra 0.2%, which aids dough hydration. “Fat is traditionally used to soften products and get a melt-in-the-mouth experience, and by using ’waxy wheat’ you get the same effect,” says Lionnet. With 2% waxy wheat per 100g of flour, you can reduce the fat content of a brownie by 40%, as well as achieving a creamier texture, claims the firm.Hydra 0.2% aims to save bakery firms money by increasing the level of hydration achievable in dough, without affecting its processing abilities. It allows a gain of 4% hydration, from 60% to 64%, with trials showing that the dough didn’t become sticky or lose shape, and was process-tolerant. Based on a traditional recipe for a French stick, using 100kg flour, 1.8kg salt, 2.5kg of yeast, 0.5kg of dough conditioner, but increasing the water content by 4kg to 64kg, and adding 0.2kg of Hydra 0.2%, the firm said a baker could achieve an overall cost saving of 1%.
Previous articleNotre Dame + Clemson = Ratings VictoryNext articleWhat role might Pete Buttigieg serve in a Biden Cabinet? Tommie Lee By Tommie Lee – November 10, 2020 0 414 CoronavirusIndianaLocalNewsSouth Bend Market Facebook Google+ Pinterest Twitter Notre Dame students donate plasma for COVID patients Pinterest Facebook Twitter WhatsApp (Tom Franklin/95.3 MNC) More than a dozen Notre Dame students donated plasma last week to help COVID-19 patients.It was part of a convalescent plasma donation drive organized by Fighting Irish students and the South Bend Medical Foundation.WNDU says 17 students participated in the drive, which resulted in enough plasma to benefit 56 COVID patients.Convalescent plasma can only be donated by someone who has recovered from COVID, which means they have developed antibodies in their blood. Hospitals have found it to be a promising therapy for patients. WhatsApp Google+
WhatsApp Pinterest By Brooklyne Beatty – December 9, 2020 2 516 WhatsApp Twitter Facebook (“The Fall of Madoff” by frankieleon, CC BY 2.0) Hundreds of St. Joseph County employees can expect to see an increase in their paycheck soon.Approximately 400 employees from 13 different departments are eligible for one-time “hazard pay” stipends for working during the pandemic. The stipends will either be $600, $900 or $1,500, depending on the employee’s risk of exposure to the virus.Elected officials are excluded from receiving hazard pay.According to the South Bend Tribune, the County Council passed an ordinance establishing stipend amounts last week, and voted unanimously to pass it on Tuesday.The stipends are estimated to cost St. Joseph County about $440,000.The county determines the amount of hazard pay each employee receives by reviewing the following:$1,500 stipends are reserved for employees who are essential to public health and safety, worked in “tight quarters, in very close proximity” to the public and went without PPE for some period of time.Also eligible are employees who interacted at work with someone who tested positive, and those who were infected after being required to attend a large gathering. Google+ Twitter Pinterest Facebook Google+ $900 stipends will go to those who had access to PPE but worked in essential, hands-on jobs.$600 stipends will go to employees who do not quality for the first two tiers, but were unable to work from home and had to be around other employees, vendors and members of the public. TAGScoronavirusCOVID-19hazard payIndianaordinanceSt. Joseph Countystipends 400+ St. Joseph County employees to receive hazard pay stipends IndianaLocalNewsSouth Bend Market Previous articleUPDATE: Missing Elkhart man found safeNext articleBenham Ave open again in Elkhart Brooklyne Beatty