n A night-shift worker has died after an incident at a Warburtons’ bakery in Bellshill, Lanarkshire. Police found Stephen McArdle lying outside the unit at 4.40am last week. The 26-year-old victim, of Coatbridge, was rushed to Monklands General Hospital in Airdrie. A spokeswoman for Warburtons said: "We are deeply saddened that one of our employees has died." Police are investigating.
n Leicester-based Geary’s Bakeries has applied for planning permission for a new bakery near its existing premises. The site is expected to be complete in two years, and will be "one of the most modern in the UK", chairman Charles Geary told British Baker. All staff and production will relocate to the new premises. Geary’s wholesale business supplies customers including the Co-op, Aldi, Tesco and Greencore.
n Premier Foods’ £1.2 billion takeover of Hovis bread owner RHM is scheduled to be completed today, March 16.
n British Baker has launched an online poll to find out what bakers think attract people to their cafés. Go to [http://www.bakeryinfo.co.uk] to vote and to access a wealth of information on the baking industry
n The national minimum wage is to rise by 17p from £5.35 to £5.52 an hour from October 2007. The rate for workers aged 18-21 will rise by 15p to £4.60 an hour, while workers aged 16 and 17 will get a 10p rise to £3.40 an hour.
n The Village Bakery Melmerby’s Fairtrade Christmas Puddings raised some £2,000 for an Oxfam project in Honduras.