Finance

Greggs sales up thanks to sandwiches

Greggs, the high street bakery, has reported like-for-like (LFL) sales were up 3.7% for the first 18 weeks of the year, which it credited to hot sandwiches and breakfasts.

Food to go boosts sales at Morrisons

Morrisons has reported a second quarter of rising like-for-like (LFL) sales, as it continues to cut costs and prices, although total sales fell due to store closures.

West Cornwall Pasty Co sales up 20%

Pasty operator West Cornwall Pasty Co (WCPC) has reported like-for-like (LFL) sales are up 20% for the year ending 31 March.

Big four supermarkets see sales slide

The grocery market continues to struggle, with the big four supermarkets all suffering a drop in sales for the 12 weeks to 24 April, and Asda faring the worst according to Kantar Worldpanel. 

Sainsbury’s underlying profits down 14%

Sainsbury's has announced a fall of 14% in underlying yearly profits in its trading update, but saw a turnaround in pre-tax profits, which were up by £620m.

Whitbread acquires Pure stake for £6.8m

Costa Coffee owner Whitbread has announced that it has acquired 49% of London-based food-to-go chain Healthy Retail Ltd, which trades as Pure, for £6.8m.

Asda to change "misleading" promos

Supermarket giant Asda has agreed to make changes to “misleading” promotional practices as part of a wider crackdown by The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Village Bakery wins south Wales Tesco contract

Wrexham-based Village Bakery has struck a deal to supply 27 Tesco stores in south Wales, adding to the 16 it already sells to in north Wales.

Major shareholder accuses Premier Foods of ‘arrogance’

A major shareholder has accused Premier Foods of “arrogance” in its handling of US suitor McCormick.

Costa sales up 15.7%

Costa Coffee owner Whitbread has reported that UK retail sales at Costa were up 15.7% in the year ending 3 March.

Dumfriesshire bakery sells to garage firm

Dumfriesshire-based Gretna Bakery has been sold for an undisclosed sum to garage business Hills of Lakeland.

Waitrose exports biscuits to China

The supermarket has started to sell its Waitrose Duchy Organic biscuits to China, as part of a new deal to export to the country for the first time.

New export guidance from FDF and FDEA

The new guidance for food and drink manufacturers from the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) and the Food and Drink Exporters Association (FDEA) is designed to help exporters compete in the global marketplace. 

Pret sales up thanks to breakfast

High street coffee chain Pret A Manger’s financial results for the 52 weeks to 31 December 2015 showed group sales were up 13.9% year on year (YOY) to £676.2m (+7.5% like-for-like). Ebitda was up 14.5% to £84.3m. 

ABF profits up despite “challenges” in bakery

Kingsmill owner Associated British Foods (ABF) has seen grocery profits rise, despite a fall in sales and “challenges” within the UK bakery market.

William Jackson Food Group acquires health food brand

William Jackson Food Group has acquired healthy snacking and bread brand The Food Doctor for an undisclosed sum.

Coffee sales to hit over £3bn in 2016

Coffee shop's sales are expected to hit £3.14bn this year, according to new research by Mintel.

Online grocery boom worth £8.6bn last year

One in four consumers now shops for groceries online, according to a new survey by Mintel.

Premier Foods criticised by leading shareholder

Premier Foods has come under fire from a leading shareholder after McCormick walked away from negotiations to buy the Mr Kipling producer.

McCormick drops bid for Premier Foods

US spice brand McCormick has walked away from talks to buy Mr Kipling-maker Premier Foods after examining its books.

Tesco records first quarterly sales growth in three years

Supermarket giant Tesco reported a £162m pre-tax profit for the year to 27 February, its first quarterly sales growth since 2013.

Caffè Nero scraps free staff lunches following NLW

High street coffee chain Caffè Nero has stopped giving its staff free lunches, in response to the National Living Wage (NLW), which came into effect on 1 April.

Christopher Rogers, outgoing MD of Costa Coffee
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Costa MD resigns

High street café Costa Coffee has announced that managing director Christopher Rogers is to step down.

Tesco rumoured to be selling off Euphorium and Harris + Hoole

Tesco is reportedly on the verge of selling its offshoots Euphorium Bakery and the coffee shop chain Harris + Hoole.

Carr’s Group ekes out profit rise despite fall in revenue

Carr’s Group has reported a small 0.5% rise in operating profit to £9.6m for the six months ended 27 February 2016, despite a 9.4% plunge in revenue to £189.1m.

ABF acquires majority Illovo stake for £262m

Kingsmill owner Associated British Foods (ABF) is to spend £262m to buy up the remaining stake in Illovo Sugar.

Co-op boss takes pay cut as profits dip

The Co-operative Group has reported 3.3% underlying profit growth in food sales, up to £250m for the 52 weeks to 2 January 2016.

M&S food sales up 4% in Q4

In its fourth-quarter trading update issued today (7 April), Marks & Spencer (M&S) has reported that food sales were up 4%, in contrast to its “unsatisfactory” clothing and home division.

Callebaut issues ‘solid’ half-year results

Chocolate and cocoa manufacturer The Barry Callebaut Group is buoyant, despite the impact of a strong Swiss franc and a weak cocoa products market, leading to a slump in net profits.

Premier holds talks with McCormick

Premier Foods has revealed it has had “detailed” and “constructive” discussions with takeover suitor McCormick.

Bakery market suffers as snacking falls

The war on sugar is starting to have an impact, with people turning their backs on sweet baked goods and pastry products because of health concerns, according to new figures.

Bakers advised to secure dairy supplies

Bakers have been warned to lock in their dairy commodity prices, which are at a 10-year low.

Carr’s Water Biscuit production restarts at flood-hit factory

Carr’s Water Biscuit production has resumed at United Biscuits’ (UB) Carlisle factory for the first time since it was flooded last December.

Grocery prices drop for 4th consecutive month

The cost of groceries has dropped for the fourth month in a row, according to mySupermarket.co.uk. 

United Biscuits identifies £500m growth opportunity in biscuits

United Biscuits (UB) has identified £500m of growth opportunity in the UK biscuit market as part of its first Biscuit Review.

Premier rejects third takeover bid

Premier Foods has rejected a fresh offer from US spice brand McCormick, which valued the company at 65p per share.

McCormick issues third offer for Premier

US spice brand McCormick has upped its offer on Premier Foods to 65p a share.

Patisserie Holding’s Luke Johnson backs Brexit

The Vote Leave campaign group has published a list of 250 business leaders whom it says support Britain leaving the EU, including Luke Johnson, chairman of Patisserie Holdings.

Gavin Darby, chief executive at Premier Foods
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Premier Foods under fire for takeover rejection

Premier Foods has been criticised by shareholders for its handling of a takeover offer from US spice brand, McCormick.

Premier Foods sells 17.27% stake

Nissin, a Japanese instant noodle firm, has committed to buy a 17.27% stake in Premier Foods.

Premier Foods’ shares jump after takeover rejection

Shares in Premier Foods jumped to a high of 54.05p yesterday, after the company announced it had rejected a takeover bid by US spice brand McCormick.

Foodservice sales growth slowing

The growth in the UK food sector will not match that of 2015, according to data analysis company Horizons’ managing director Peter Backman. 

Brian Cassin joins Sainsbury’s board

Sainsbury’s has announced Brian Cassin will join its board as a non-executive director.

Costa beset by separation rumours

Whitbread’s shares soared yesterday as takeover and break-up talk was rife around the owner of Costa Coffee.

Premier Foods writes off Hovis stake

Premier Foods, the manufacturer of Mr Kipling and Cadbury cakes, has revealed it is to write off its £8m investment in Hovis.

Survey finds demand for more gluten-free products

There is insufficient choice in the gluten-free market, according to 73% of consumers who buy coeliac-friendly products.

Scottish companies forge gluten-free partnership

A partnership to produce gluten-free biscuits has been announced by Duncan’s of Deeside and Pulsetta Foods.

Allied Bakeries avoids strike disruption

A hot cross bun shortage has been avoided following successful talks between Allied Bakeries and union officials.

New director for Tesco

Supermarket giant Tesco has announced that Lindsey Pownall will join the board as an additional independent non-executive director.

Demand for more independent coffee shops

Despite high street domination by the branded coffee chains, it is independent coffee shops that consumers want, according to new research.

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