first_imgThe British Society of Baking’s Golden Jubilee Spring Conference, held at Food & Bake, will provide bakers with an insight into business issues affecting the whole of the industry. Speakers from Greggs, Tesco and Allied Bakeries will be among the roll call.On the Monday, Sir Michael Darrington, MD of Greggs, will speak at the conference, as well as Tony Reed, category director for bakery of Tesco, and Alex Waugh, director general of millers’ association Nabim.Sir Michael Darrington has been at the helm of Greggs for 23 years, during which time the Newcastle-based bakery firm has become the third biggest seller of sandwiches in the country with sales of bread and rolls reduced to just 9% of annual turnover. Sir Michael will give an insight into how Greggs continues to be successful through its people. As category director for bakery of Tesco, Tony Reed controls bakery in 1,800 stores in the UK. He first joined Tesco 28 years ago on his 15th birthday as a trolley boy and worked his way up to become a director. Brian Robinson, the new chief executive of Allied Bakeries, will compare the progress of the Australian baking industry with that of the UK. These speakers will be joined by Professor Christiani Jeya Henry, head of food science and human nutrition at Oxford Brookes University, and Royal Society visiting professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. A board member of the Food Standards Agency, Professor Henry will be sharing his thoughts on the glycaemic index and opportunities and challenges for the food industry.On the Tuesday, speakers include craft baker Chris Freeman, organiser of National Doughnut Week; Trevor Mooney, joint-MD of Chatwins in Nantwich; John Slattery of Slattery’s in Manchester; Alan Stuart from Dubbie Bakery in Fife; and John Waterfield of Waterfields. Interest in the event has been such that tickets for the gala dinner on Monday, March 20, are completely sold out. But limited tickets for the conference are still available. They cost £60 per day for members and £79 per day for non-members. For more information and to book tickets, visit or call the BSB on tel: 0161 427 1772.last_img read more

Sourdough show

first_imgMetfield Bakery uses meat reared on owner Stuart Oetzmann’s own farm to make its lauded pork pies – with the pigs also performing the dual role of handy waste disposal unit, gobbling up the bakery’s leftover bread and vegetables. If mud, pig-like sanitary conditions and hungry, whiffy creatures are your thing too, you could join the 85,000 revellers at this summer’s Download rock festival, or the gargantuan 150,000-capacity Bestival festival on the Isle of White, who will be fed by Metfield’s new travelling bakery.The former wholesale-only bakery will be taking to the road this summer as it branches out into retailing, following successes with markets and online sales. The Dereham-based firm recently designed and commissioned a working mobile organic bakery – a big trailer with a three-deck Mono oven, a spiral mixer, mains pressure hot water and refrigeration – which will also be scooting around local events, horse trials and agricultural shows.The prospect of live bakery theatre has clearly sparked the imagination of event organisers, with Metfield signed up to 20 already. And the projected £100,000 extra sales should easily recoup the branded trailer’s £27,000 price tag within the year. “The fact that we’re probably one of the only people in the country that can pitch up with a mobile organic bakery unlocks plenty of doors for us,” says Oetzmann. “There’s good volume turnover in taking your business to 20,000-200,000 customers on a weekend.”It trialled the concept last year, transporting a generator and the bakery’s own oven to one event – at great cost. The main attraction is the sourdough bread, just three-to-four types of which are baked on the trailer. “Because we have long fermentation times we have more control; we can make it up on a Thursday night and bake it on the Saturday morning,” says Oetzmann.The Norfolk-born ex-chef has a track record of working with big names, including Anthony Worrall Thompson and the Roux Brothers, but is now a-self proclaimed baker. “I’ve converted to being a baker, for sure,” he says. “There are some really good pastry chefs who are passionate about using great ingredients – they’re now discovering bread and making their own personal journeys with it.”Oetzmann’s own journey began in the early 1990s after taking inspiration from 18th-century authors, including Eliza Acton, Hannah Glasse and Elizabeth David. Six years ago, he started his own business with the aim of reviving bygone British baking traditions. He now employs 23 people and turns over £1m.His sourdough starter – a barm, that’s seeded using brewers’ yeast, and fed with rye flour – is used to make 5,000 loaves a week. With sourdough, costs are low and margins high, he insists. “We don’t have to buy in much yeast and we don’t use additives or fats to achieve the kind of textures that bakers years ago would have achieved anyway.” Apart from bread, Metfield makes a series of traditional English tarts, cakes and puddings, including Eccles cakes and the hugely popular – if not entirely lardy – Lardy cake, made with 50% butter. nlast_img read more

Rule review

first_imgLabelling, waste treatment, fortification and saturated fat are on the EU legislative agenda, as parliamentary officer Chris Dabner told the NA conference earlier this month.EU review of food labelling proposalsThe EU is proposing mandatory nutrition labelling on all pre-packed food; an extension of country-of-origin labelling; and improved label clarity.”This will present many challenges,” said parliamentary officer Chris Dabner. “The EU thinks that in order to make labels clearer, you need to make the print bigger. We’ll end up with A4 labels.”On loose food and food pre-packed for direct sale, the EU wants the declaration of allergens and a use-by date provided for certain foods – for example, pâté and cooked meats. “We initially hoped the EU review would result in the Food Labelling Directive being consolidated and simplified,” said Dabner. “In reality, it will become a Regulation not a Directive and additional requirements will result in a huge document.”There are also seven UK Food Labelling Regulations (National Provisions) which are not in the EU Food Labelling Directive, said Dabner. These include:? Regulation 4(3)(b)&(c): exemption from labelling for foods sold for the benefit of charities and food sold at fêtes, bazaars for the benefit of schools, etc? Regulation 18(1)(e): exemption from labelling for the mandatory fortificants in flour – calcium, iron, niacin, thiamine? Regulation 23(1)(b): Exemption from labelling for flour confectionery packed in crimp cases or wholly transparent packaging.The continued existence of these national provisions is also being challenged. The completion date is expected to be around 2009/10.Fortification of flour or bread with folic acidThe Food Standards Agency (FSA) Board held a meeting on 17 May, when its 12 members decided whether to recommend, to the Department of Health, whether folic acid should become a mandatory additive. Folic acid reduces the incidence of foetal neural tube defects, Dabner told delegates. He explained the various options which the FSA was weighing up and some of the issues raised.”Folic acid could be added to any of the following: all flour; all flour except wholemeal; bread-making flour; or to bread. The Republic of Ireland is probably going to fortify bread. Other issues include, whether the presence of folic acid should appear on labelling, in which case should the four other statutory fortifications – calcium, iron, niacin and thiamine – also be labelled?”Also, as flour is present in thousands of products, often in small amounts, does this mean that there should be a minimum flour content in products before labelling is required?”Landfill directive and pre-treatment of waste”In about nine years’ time it is predicted there will be no holes in the ground left for waste,” said Dabner. So, as of 30 October, 2007, waste must be pre-treated prior to landfill. Businesses will have to sort and recycle some of their waste, either by pre-treating their own waste or paying a contractor to do it for them. “Ultimately it is in our interest to recycle, because the less landfill space there is, the higher the landfill taxes will become.”consultation on energy intake and saturated fatThe intake of saturated fat and calories for large sections of the population are too high, resulting in obesity and concerns about cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes and some cancers.”The FSA’s main target appears to be major food manufacturers and food retailers but it also wants to engage the catering sector,” added Dabner. The FSA is suggesting:? More front-of-pack labelling? A healthy balanced diet, with more bread and fewer crisps, biscuits, cakes and soft drinks? A reduction in portion sizes? Reformulation to lower levels of saturated fats and/or sugars? The removal of added trans fatty acids and hydrogenated vegetable oils, which the FSA says often occur in foods such as biscuits, cakes, fast food and pastry? Focusing reformulation on biscuits, buns, cakes, pastry, fruit pies pizzas and meat. nlast_img read more

Flamboyant fruit flans

first_imgThis is a light flan made from a pastry case and filled with a diplomat cream, flavoured with rum and topped with fresh fruit. It is easy and quick to make, has great visual appeal and sells very well in the summer months. It is the perfect light dessert to accompany a barbecue.We think that the retail price should be three to three-and-a-half times the price of the ingredients and we charge £15 for an eight-inch round fruit flan. IngredientsSweetpaste, sponge, chocolate, diplomat cream (see recipe overleaf), seasonal fruit, sugar syrup, apricot glazeMethod1 Line a shallow (18mm high) flan case with sweetpaste (approximately 3mm thick). Trim the edges so it looks neat.2 Bake blind until golden and leave to cool. Remove from tin and place on a cake board.3 Carefully brush the inside of the flan with a thin layer of melted chocolate. This will keep the pastry case crisp, as it provides a waterproof barrier between the custard and the pastry.4 Fill the flan with diplomat cream.5 Smooth over with a palette knife. If you ensure that the custard is slightly domed, this makes the flan look fuller when it is completed, which is more appealing.6 Cut out a thin layer of sponge and place gently on top of the custard (this prevents the fruit sinking into the custard).7 Soak the sponge evenly with sugar syrup – we flavour ours with Grand Marnier.8 Garnish with a selection of fresh fruit, ensuring that the fruit is completely covering the sponge. Seal with a clear apricot glaze.  VariationsThis can be made in a variety of sizes and fruit toppings, such as strawberry. They are also popular as individual pastries. Recipe for Diplomat Cream2/3 pastry cream1/3 whipped creamRum to tastelast_img read more

Carr’s contest

first_imgCarr’s Milling Industries is to sponsor the World Marmalade Festival, held in February. This will mark Paddington Bear’s 50th birthday and is designed to give “the traditional marmalade sandwich a make-over”, said Caroline Dale of Carrs Breadmaker.Bakers have been asked to design a new sandwich filling incorporating marmalade. The top three sandwich fillings will be taste-tested by visitors to the festival at Dalemain Country House, Ullswater, on 7-10 February.The winner, as voted by the public, will win a weekend break for two in the Lake District.last_img read more

Fruit pricing

first_imgCoconut: Origin coconut prices have eased over the past 1-2 months, although these declines have been largely offset by the stronger dollar. Demand for coconut should pick up in the run-up to Easter.Raisins: Although Turkish raisins are scarce and still trading at a widening premium over Turkish sultanas, their prices are still cheaper than the US fruit and California will need to drop down much lower before it can effectively compete again, although the dollar weakness right now is encouraging.Sultanas: Exports from the start of the season to date, virtually mirror those figures from last year (approx 125,000mts) although availability is far greater. Provided the weather prevails and there appears to be another big crop on the horizon, then pricing should stabilise if not weaken further.Currants: Prices are still high in Greece, with little reason to reduce their export pricing, and compounded by a euro/sterling exchange rate, now 25% worse than six months ago. The quality coming out of Greece is also unreliable this season.Apricots: There has been little to no change in UK pricing over the past two to three months. As always, the developing new crop in Turkey is vulnerable to frost damage until June, which has affected the crop and pricing on more than one occasion.? Based on information provided by ingredients supplier RM Curtis.last_img read more

Starbucks profits improve as it eyes a rebrand

first_imgStarbucks Corporation has announced strong third quarter results for the period ended June 28, 2009, and has exceeded its cost saving target the period.Despite a fall in net revenue from $2.6bn in Q3 of 2008 to $2.4bn in 2009, the firm said the success of its consumer facing initiatives and changes to its cost structure have resulted in improvement in comparable store sales – 2009 has seen a sales decline of 5% in Q3 compared to 8% in Q2.Third quarter operating profit stood at $204m, compared to an operating loss of $21.6m in Q3 2008.The coffee chain achieved cost savings of around $175m, exceeding its Q3 target of $150m, which amounts to approximately $370m cost savings for the year-to-date.Troy Alstead, executive vice president and chief financial officer said its store partners had “embraced the cost disciplines and efficiency initiatives”. The chain has also been trying to boost sales by experimenting with an unbranded outlet. One former Starbucks branded outlet in Seattle has been rebranded and will open as 15th Ave. Coffee and Tea on Friday 24 July.“This coffeehouse is a Starbucks, albeit a different one than our customers are accustomed to,” explained a spokesperson for the firm. It will serve Starbucks coffee and share the same missions and values as Starbucks but delivered in a totally different way, she added. The new outlet will also serve beer and wine, and there are plans to open a further two outlets of this type.The spokesperson added that the trial is “very specific to Seattle” and there are currently no plans to roll it out in the UK.last_img read more

Renshaw benefits from home baking boom

first_imgRenshaw looks set to grow by over a quarter as the bakery ingredients supplier reported spring sales matching those of the Christmas peak.”Our ambition is to grow the business to £50m of revenue,” said commercial director Sarah Summers. “2009 was a very busy year for Renshaw. We grew revenue to nearly £38m, with a 30% increase on EBITDA through a combination of volume growth and improving our margins. We’re usually a seasonal business we’re as busy today as we were in December.”Renshaw, whose business is split evenly between manufac-turing ingredients, retail packs and wholesale/sugarcraft, has recently signed up to every major multiple. “We plan to extend the Renshaw brand into key consumer sectors,” said Summers, who identified retail as a strong growth area. “There is a huge trend for home baking and crafting. More consumers are shopping in this area and, at each trip, they’re buying more products and they’re doing it more frequently, which is great news for us.”The firm, which has been decoupled from sister company, sugar supplier Napier Brown, has invested in plant and training, set up an innovation team, and developed links with research bodies to improve R&D. “We have developed sauces for the desserts sector in the last 18 months, and that has grown very strongly.”Parent Real Good Food Co also revealed a change in strategy at its recent AGM. “The key thing is that we want to be a market-led business rather than a business controlled by manufacturing or strictly controlled by its finances,” said chairman Peter Totte.As part of the implementation of that strategy, Waitrose and Marks & Spencer supplier Hayden’s Bakery said it was on track for 30% growth by the end of this year compared with 2008 and is expanding into 55,000sq ft of additional space.last_img read more

Mouthing off

first_img“This is a first for Paris and maybe the world. I want to mix luxurious gastronomy and urban style to create an eclectic mash that’s different to anything else around, for the young and out of sync”Guillaume Sanchez, owner of the recently opened Horror Picture Tea on rue St Honoré in Paris, described as “a funky mixture of luxury dessert shop, music venue, bistro, urban art gallery and, yes, tattoo parlor””You have to be a bit Willy Wonka about which flavours you pair with which vegetable some vegetables enhance the flavours they’re with, such as parsnip and ginger, for example” Harry Eastwood, co-founder of Paris-based baker Petit Pois, which will be launching next week in Selfridges with a whole new cupcake niche: gluten-free vegetable cupcakeslast_img read more

Bolton awaits bakers’ visit

first_imgB olton arena will play host to the 5th annual Bakers’ Fair this autumn, which takes place on Sunday 2 October. The free-to-attend event, sponsored by Norbake, will be coupled with Butchers’ Fair as it was at the spring fair in April, giving great opportunities to those companies that work across both sectors.Many new exhibitors are attending this year: CakePortioner; The South African Macadamia Nut Council; GB Plange; Stamford; Eurowire; Soil Association; FWP Matthews; BFP Wholesale; and Mailbox Mouldings. Existing exhibitors include sponsors Norbake; Dawn Foods; Mono Equipment; RedBlack; Reynards; Rank Hovis; Unifine; and Cereform.The Stage will feature presentations by John Robertshaw of Bako North Western on ’How to make cake pops’. He will show bakers how these cakes on sticks can become a commercial success, by producing them in a cost-effective and timely manner.Lee Holdstock, the Soil Association’s trade relations manager, will be discussing the issue of ’Demystifying Organic’. He will give an overview of regulations and standards relevant to organic baking, while also considering to whom they apply, what the requirements are in practice and what opportunities there are for certified businesses.For the first time, the Richemont Club of Great Britain’s competition classes have been opened to everyone to enter, not just Richemont members. As part of the eighth annual competition, the Live Challenge Cup will be competed for, this year, by invited teams from the Richemont Club of Great Britain and the National Association of Master Bakers. The overall Richemont Trophy will be awarded to the highest-scoring Richemont team or business, with the competition prizes presented by ’Allo ’Allo! actress Vicki Michelle.Opening Times9.30-16.00Stage Presentations & Masterclasses10.00-15.30Richemont Club Competition TimingslAll products to arrive prior to 10.30am on Sunday 2 October 2011lJudging will take place between 11:00 and 13:00lPrize-giving will commence at approximately 14:30lPrizes to be awarded by ’Allo ’Allo actress Vicki Michelle Travel info Location: Bolton Arena, Arena Approach, Horwich, Bolton, Lancashire, BL6 6LBThe Arena is situated in the Middlebrook Leisure & Retail Park, next to the Reebok Stadium. It is just 300m from J6 of the M61 and 200m from Horwich Parkway railway station. It has extensive parking, convenient hotel accommodation and direct motorway and rail links. All travel information can be found on the Bolton Arena website, Exhibitor list The South African Macadamia Nut Council*CakePortioner*RedBlackRenshawRank HovisAcoldDawn FoodsNorbakeDCA EquipmentJiffy TrucksAcrivarnMono EquipmentGB Plange*ReynardsStamford*UnifineLink Print & PackagingKraft FoodsCereformEurowire*Soil Association*CJ’s Specialist VehiclesFrimovelDelifrance FWP Matthews*BFP Wholesale*Mailbox Mouldings** new exhibitors Stage Timetable 10.00amHow to make Cake Pops, John Robertshaw, Bako North Western10.40amDemystifying Organic, Lee Holdstock, Soil Association1.00pmchristmas ideas Keith Clarke, Unifine1.30pmGeneration Game3.00pmAwardsPresentationChampion of Champions 2011National Pie CompetitionRichemont Club CompetitionPresented by Vicki Michellelast_img read more