Asda’s new “hot cross hedgehog” loaf is the “best product it has ever put out”, according to bakery director Huw Edwards. The new 400g spicy bloomer loaf, priced at 92p, has a ripple effect from cuts on the top. Bakery equipment company Capway Systems has started marketing Rijkaart NV products in the UK, after taking over the Dutch dough-processing equipment firm last year. The acquisition gives Capway the capability to supply complete production lines.A NEW report from market analyst Datamonitor reveals the UK is Europe’s biggest user of own-label goods, with pene-tration rate exceeding 35% of total consumer packaged goods spending. Consumer spending on private-label food, drinks and personal care reached £39 billion in 2005, and Datamonitor forecasts this will increase a further 25%, to £48.7bn in 2010. Kroll, administrator of snacks company Golden Wonder, is in negotiations with three separate parties as it seeks to sell the firm’s remaining operations, including brands such as Nik Naks. Its manufacturing site for Pringles Mini in Corby was sold to CTO Holdings, an affiliate of Tayto (NI) on January 13. Golden Wonder is continuing to trade since going into administration on January 6.
has bought US firm The Coffee Equipment company and its Clover Brewing System.The deal will see the US coffee chain install Clover coffee machines, which have a vacuum brewing process and tailored coffee blends, alongside its standard system.The Clover system is better suited to bringing out the flavours of complex coffees, Starbucks said. Clover coffee will be sold at a higher price than Starbucks’ standard blends. Machines will be installed in the US first, then rolled out to selected international markets.Starbucks has also launched a new website, mystarbucksidea.com. Starbucks boss Howard Schultz said this and other initiatives would “help reignite” the firm’s relationship with its customers.
Consultancy roleNeill Hastie who retired from Greggs after almost 30 years, has set up a consultancy for the baking industry. His specialities are ingredients through NPD, production, engineering, building, risk and overall project management. Contact him on 0191 378 1871 or email: [email protected]’s expandsThe Dorman Museum in Middlesbrough is now home to a second Nana-Tom’s outlet, to be run by coffee-loving family, the Thompsons. The first café is located at Captain Cook’s Birthplace Museum, serving premium coffee, lunchtime meals, cakes, and a range of other sweet bakery goods.Sausage rolls adaptedAfter research into the taste preferences of its sausage roll brand, savoury pastry brand Pork Farms has launched a four-pack version of its Big Hit sausage roll (stronger recipe) and a four-pack Bowyers recipe (lighter) sausage roll. Both packs will be available from Tesco and Asda from 10 September on promotion.Tropical tastesJuice brand Tropicana is launching a new tropical Pineapple and Guava flavour, to add to its 100% not-from-concentrate Tropicana Pure Premium range. It has been designed to increase consumer choice and drive sales outside the breakfast drink market.Miniature agreementCooper’s Coffee has secured a deal with The Miniature Bakery to distribute its premium bakery products into UK coffee shops. The Miniature Bakery’s cakes, biscuits and chocolate are already stocked in shops such as Selfridges, Harrods and Harvey Nichols, but the firm hopes the agreement with Huddersfield-based Cooper’s will help it gain listings in cafés.
£6.99 Published by EgmontThis bakery cook book for the kids invites you to follow in the footsteps of Wallace & Gromit in their latest film, A Matter of Loaf and Death, in which they run a bakery. Full of practicality, it has wipe-clean pages for those messy flour spillages, as well as a pen to mark off the ingredients used, so you don’t accidentally put two lots of flour in and no butter.The ring-bound book folds out as a stand-up and, on the inside front cover, is a list of equipment needed for the recipes. There is also child-friendly information about what equipment to leave to the adults, as well as tips on safety in the bakery. The baker’s dozen book contains 13 recipes – for obvious reasons – including: Banana Bread, Flipping Pancakes, Sweet ’n’ Cheesy Strawberry Cheesecake, Shortbread Biscuits and Bouncy Blueberry Muffins. There is also a note by each recipe for steps that require the watchful eyes of an adult. The last page is dedicated to Wallace & Gromit’s Cookery Corner, which gives some simple technical tips such as abbreviations for measurements.This is a must for encouraging children to bake, whether you are a baker, a parent or both.
Cast your mind back to when you were at school. Remember how you were taught the basics and encouraged to discover the rest. This is the perfect time of year for you to get back to basics by reviewing your bakery retail or coffee shop offer.Review each category in terms of sales and profitability: hot food and bakery; sandwiches and snacking; hot and cold beverages; and your all-important healthy range of food-on-the-go. Decide which are your best-selling products and look for ways to improve or support their sales. For instance, sausage rolls are always in the top three, so maybe try a twist: go for a product with provenance, high meat content, lower salt, Cumberland or Lincolnshire – your customers will always appreciate something different yet familiar.As with most businesses, we rely on the same customers returning again and again. Yet why should they if, when they visit, they find half-full displays and tired-looking products? In a recent him! survey Pret A Manger, Greggs and Subway scored well in terms of customer service. Why? The answer is simple: great products, served quickly with friendly service.Look to your local trading area and ask where your customers are coming from. If you are close to a school, you can easily identify one of your major customers as the ’school-run mums and dads’. In this case, your offer should be family-friendly, so why not offer a multi-bag with a sandwich, fruit, snack and a drink. And remember, school runs are twice a day! Other customer groups range from morning commuters, looking for a fresh coffee and breakfast snack, and builders and van drivers, looking for mid-morning top-ups.Cafés close to office buildings are a perfect destination for professionals looking for a place to hold their meeting outside the office and meeting room arena. A nice seating area, a small lunch menu, tea and coffee is all you need to accommodate these customers.So what’s next? Take a look at the calendar and decide which events you should support in order to maximise customer spend. We start with Halloween, closely followed by our beloved Bonfire night on the 5 November and, if you haven’t already planned your National Cupcake Week promotions, then now is the time to start.Finally, with your offer looking great, make sure your staff reflect your quality and standards by focusing on customer service training, food hygiene and safety, and up-selling. Your business is now perfectly prepared to satisfy customers and boost your sales in the weeks ahead.
Belgian pastry company Pidy has launched a mini waffle cone for use with savoury fillings.The Mini Cone Neutral comes in boxes of 112 or 308 pieces and each pack can be ordered with a unique artist’s palette-shaped cone stand, containing up to 35 holes. The cones are 7.5cm in length and can be filled with fish, meat or pâté for example. They have an ambient shelf-life of 12 months.Pidy has also launched another foodservice friendly product Cuppys. These are pastry canapé cases, which come in two shapes Flower or Canapé and can be filled with both sweet and savoury fillings. The cases are 5cm in diameter and can be served hot or cold.
Sodium reductionMarket research expert Mintel has revealed that sodium reduction features in its 2010 global Consumer Packaged Goods predictions as “the next major health movement”. Mintel director of trends and innovation David Jago said the difference with sodium reduction was that it is being “pushed by food companies and health bodies, not by consumers”.Milligans to expandNewcastle-based bakery chain Milligans has revealed plans to open five new cafés next year as it continues its expansion across the north, according to nebusiness.co.uk. The chain sold 15 of its bakery shops and a manufacturing site to rival North East Bakery in 2007. It has since set about growing as a coffee shop operator with its brand ’Café M from Milligans’.Bakery accoladesIndependent family flour miller Marriage’s recently sponsored Baker of the Year categories at the Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk Food and Drink Awards. The bakeries were nominated by the public, before independent judges assessed finalists on their product range, quality and customer service. The Norfolk champion was Steven Winter, Dozen Artisan Bakery; Christine Wright, The Cake Shop, Woodbridge took the Suffolk title; and Essex Baker of the Year went to Simon Cosson, Cosson and Son of Harold Hill.Dawn’s student dayDawn Foods recently held an open day for 13 A-level Business Studies students from Pershore High School in Worcestershire. The students were taken on a tour of Dawn’s Evesham production facilities and gained an insight into the history and culture of the company, including a look at the recruitment process.
Machinery: Schubert TLM (Top Loading Machine)Why installed: Ginsters’ bakery in Callington was extended to include a new 300m2 packing facility.How it came about: Two Schubert machines have been in operation at the site since 2007, but Ginsters wanted to add a third automated packaging machine to pack its Cornish pasties and savoury snacks.What it does: Up to 400 products a minute are packed by the new machine, which incorporates a vision system for checking product shape and surface decoration, so that any misshapen or broken goods are rejected before the final packaging process. Empty display trays are loaded on to a conveyor by a Schubert TLM-F2 robotic arm that removes them from a storage station with a special swiveling tool. At the same time, products are fed into the system from an upstream line.A Schubert TLM-F44 robot equipped with a vacuum gripper tool is used to pick and place products into the display trays, which are then transported on a conveyor to the next stage of the packaging process.Problems solved: Efficiency has been improved and costly, non-value added activities such as manual packing, have been eliminated.Supplied by: Schubertwww.schubert-uk.co.uk
Cheap and ’recession-busting’ sandwich ranges threaten to undermine consumer perceptions of quality and value for money in the category, according to a new report from the British Sandwich Association.The report found that while the UK market has grown by 3.6% in the last year to reach a value of over £6bn, average prices being charged by some retailers are the same or lower now than they were in 2007, despite food cost inflation of around 10% and a 4% rise in general inflation since then.Static prices are due, in part, to the launch of ’value’ sandwich ranges targeting price-conscious consumers.”This may be understandable in recession, but the industry needs to take care that it does not result in consumer perceptions of the quality and value for money becoming undermined,” said the report.Other concerns included product blandness due to reductions in salt and fat content to meet government targets; a lack of innovation due to cutting back on new product development budgets; and reduced consumer choice as a result of restructuring of shelves.
Teachers around the country are getting bread-making lessons so that they can inspire teenagers to bake.The National Association of Master Bakers (NAMB) is sending board members into schools as part of the Teach Food Technology programme, designed to prepare for when food technology becomes a compulsory part of the national curriculum.Home economics is not a statutory subject, so the programme is helping to educate teachers who are not food specialists, giving them basic baking skills and tips.National Association of British and Irish Millers (nabim) director general Alex Waugh said it had contacted the government to suggest the new programme covered baking as one of its practical elements. It agreed, and artisan bakers are now giving up their time to visit schools in London, Birmingham, Manchester and the south west.Said Waugh: “Four hundred teachers should have had the training by the time the programme ends in March and they are on track to do that.”Teachers’ feedback has been superb and really positive it has given them confidence and I think they’ll be teaching bread-making in schools as a result. It should lead to children being inspired and wanting to do baking or at least looking at bread a bit differently and recognising the skill of people who make it well.”Anthony Kindred, of Kindred Bakery, has given demonstrations at schools in London many of them to geography or history teachers. He said: “It’s usually quite a mixed bunch of people who are foodies and those who have never seen a bag of flour, but they have always been very keen.”His one-and-a-half-hour sessions show teachers how to make dough balls and plaits. Added Kindred: “The more people who know that bread is a handmade product, the more it becomes another weapon in our armoury against the supermarkets.”Waugh said it was unlikely the government would put any more money into the programme but that nabim was talking about ways the training could be continued.