October

Conference cancelled

Improve has cancelled the conference due to take place today, Tuesday, October 30 at the Bakers Hall in London. It will be rescheduled to take place during the Baking Industry Exhibition in April 6-9 at Birmingham NEC. Further details will be announced when the new date and time is confirmed.

O'Briens hails store revamps

Sandwich chain O'Briens says sales have risen by 14% across 50 stores, which have been redesigned in the past two months.

Competition hots up in Scotch pie contest

Bakers and butchers across Britain are gearing up for this year's World Scotch Pie Championships, taking place at Lauder College, Dunfermline, on 7 November.

Bright ideas

As costs continue to rise, bakers are increasingly keen to find ways of cutting utilities bills.

The Carbon Trust adds loan boost

New research by The Carbon Trust has revealed that lack of time and expertise to measure and reduce their carbon emissions is preventing the UK's small and medium businesses from achieving business energy savings.

Energy impact analysed

While competing claims and methodologies are being bandied about, one research team has been toiling away to nail down the carbon impact of products specific to bakers by developing a supply chain framework for measuring CO2 emissions from plough to plate. The results suggest that the bakery chain can operate at extremely high levels of efficiency, whether using animal or vegetable products and whether the products are organically-produced or not. But there is scope to improve energy efficiency in all parts of the food supply chain.

Finishing touches

Bakery retailers are increasingly turning to thaw-and-serve and bake-off goods to complement their own baked-from-scratch goods. This adds value with more upmarket offerings, helps diversification and enables bakers to accommodate an ever-more-discerning population hell-bent on premium novelties. Or as Arnaud Rannou of Traiteur de Paris succinctly puts it: "Bakers receive our products frozen and repack them in posh boxes."

Understanding is all

Knowledge is power was the message from Tesco's in-store bakery category manager at the autumn British Society of Baking (BSB) conference. Neil Franklin, who probably has more of both these commodities at his fingertips than many others in the baking industry, said suppliers are not employing supermarket sales data enough.

The Richemont Club at the Bakers' Fair

Chester-based P&A Davies was named best craft bakery chain, scooping the Richemont Club 2007 Trophy at the Club's annual competition, held at Bakers' Fair North West in Bolton Arena.

Bakers' Fair hits Bolton

More than 400 bakers and food-to-go retailers from all over the country travelled from as far afield as Devon to the Bakers' Fair North West on October 14.

Commodities tracker

Export meetings in Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands and Belgium indicate a strong demand for UK milling wheat in European markets this year, according to the Home Grown Cereals Authority (HGCA).

Aga sells foodservice and bakery arm for £260m

Equipment company Aga last week agreed a £260m sale of its foodservice and bakery equipment division to Italian manufacturer Ali SpA.

Farmhouse Fare wins BBS card contest

Farmhouse Fare has won the competition to find a budding artist in the baking industry to create the Bakers' Benevolent Society's charity Christmas card.

viewpoint

I sometimes think we are all obsessed with 'trends'. But one thing is certain: if you are not aware of them, your business will stand still then start to die - and so will your customer base.

Distribution watch

The Freight Transport Association (FTA) has this month criticised the government's decision to increase fuel duty by 2p per litre.

British Baker tackles social responsibility

Prices rise as costs increase

Half of bakers have put their prices up and plan further rises, due to rising costs, according to results from the latest British Baker poll on [http://www.bakeryinfo.co.uk].

Places running out for One Voice event

Three-quarters of the places for the One Voice conference on the future of bakery training and qualifications have already been snapped up.

Wood chips to fuel future expansion plans at Macphie

Scottish bakery supplier Macphie has unveiled plans for an ambitious renewable energy plan that will involve cutting its carbon emissions by 2,000 tonnes a year.

FSA in a hurry to decide future of trans fats

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is pushing through a review of the health impacts of trans fatty acids requested by Secretary of State for Health Alan Johnson last week.

Briefs

n Food Safety Week will take place next year from 9-13 June, the Food Standards Agency has announced. The UK-wide campaign aims to raise awareness of good food hygiene practice.

O'Briens hails store revamps

Sandwich chain O'Briens says sales have risen by 14% across 50 stores, which have been redesigned in the past two months.

Gordon Polson, director, the Federation of Bakers

Rising food prices are never far from the headlines these days with wheat playing a pivotal role in cost increases and providing a focus for the media.

Competition hots up in Scotch pie contest

Bakers and butchers across Britain are gearing up for this year's World Scotch Pie Championships, taking place at Lauder College, Dunfermline, on 7 November.

Bright ideas

As costs continue to rise, bakers are increasingly keen to find ways of cutting utilities bills.

The Carbon Trust adds loan boost

New research by The Carbon Trust has revealed that lack of time and expertise to measure and reduce their carbon emissions is preventing the UK's small and medium businesses from achieving business energy savings.

Energy impact analysed

While competing claims and methodologies are being bandied about, one research team has been toiling away to nail down the carbon impact of products specific to bakers by developing a supply chain framework for measuring CO2 emissions from plough to plate. The results suggest that the bakery chain can operate at extremely high levels of efficiency, whether using animal or vegetable products and whether the products are organically-produced or not. But there is scope to improve energy efficiency in all parts of the food supply chain.

Finishing touches

Bakery retailers are increasingly turning to thaw-and-serve and bake-off goods to complement their own baked-from-scratch goods. This adds value with more upmarket offerings, helps diversification and enables bakers to accommodate an ever-more-discerning population hell-bent on premium novelties. Or as Arnaud Rannou of Traiteur de Paris succinctly puts it: "Bakers receive our products frozen and repack them in posh boxes."

Understanding is all

Knowledge is power was the message from Tesco's in-store bakery category manager at the autumn British Society of Baking (BSB) conference. Neil Franklin, who probably has more of both these commodities at his fingertips than many others in the baking industry, said suppliers are not employing supermarket sales data enough.

The Richemont Club at the Bakers' Fair

Chester-based P&A Davies was named best craft bakery chain, scooping the Richemont Club 2007 Trophy at the Club's annual competition, held at Bakers' Fair North West in Bolton Arena.

Bakers' Fair hits Bolton

More than 400 bakers and food-to-go retailers from all over the country travelled from as far afield as Devon to the Bakers' Fair North West on October 14.

Commodities tracker

Export meetings in Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands and Belgium indicate a strong demand for UK milling wheat in European markets this year, according to the Home Grown Cereals Authority (HGCA).

Aga sells foodservice and bakery arm for £260m

Equipment company Aga last week agreed a £260m sale of its foodservice and bakery equipment division to Italian manufacturer Ali SpA.

Farmhouse Fare wins BBS card contest

Farmhouse Fare has won the competition to find a budding artist in the baking industry to create the Bakers' Benevolent Society's charity Christmas card.

viewpoint

I sometimes think we are all obsessed with 'trends'. But one thing is certain: if you are not aware of them, your business will stand still then start to die - and so will your customer base.

Distribution watch

The Freight Transport Association (FTA) has this month criticised the government's decision to increase fuel duty by 2p per litre.

British Baker tackles social responsibility

Prices rise as costs increase

Half of bakers have put their prices up and plan further rises, due to rising costs, according to results from the latest British Baker poll on [http://www.bakeryinfo.co.uk].

Places running out for One Voice event

Three-quarters of the places for the One Voice conference on the future of bakery training and qualifications have already been snapped up.

Wood chips to fuel future expansion plans at Macphie

Scottish bakery supplier Macphie has unveiled plans for an ambitious renewable energy plan that will involve cutting its carbon emissions by 2,000 tonnes a year.

FSA in a hurry to decide future of trans fats

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is pushing through a review of the health impacts of trans fatty acids requested by Secretary of State for Health Alan Johnson last week.

Briefs

n Food Safety Week will take place next year from 9-13 June, the Food Standards Agency has announced. The UK-wide campaign aims to raise awareness of good food hygiene practice.

Irwin's breads on Irish menu

Independent bakery Irwin's business development manager Brendan Lappin has unveiled 69-pub chain O'Neill's new Taste of Ireland menu, due to launch in October.

UK millers' concern over wheat supplies

Millers in the UK are waiting nervously for the Australian wheat harvest to come in later this autumn, with high global wheat prices and volatility expected to continue.

People

Dave Roberts, Lucy Baylem

Healthy from the inside

Healthy ingredient technologies for use in bakery will be at the forefront of this month's Food Ingredients Europe exhibition at London's ExCeL.

Bakbel's plant is just jammy

To a jounalist, the prospect of trip abroad to visit a newly-opened factory sounds jammy! Especially when the factory involved is a supplier of that sweet preserve.

How to avoid going stale

The growth in supermarket convenience-store formats is paving the way for more impulse and top-up bake-off and finished goods. However, heavy promotions could devalue the category and, as inevitably happens when new launches occur, long-established key products become commoditised.

Historic occasion

Some 84 past and present members of the British Confectioners' Asso­ciation gathered in Nairn, Scotland last month for an historic annual general meeting.

Small firms set to take a pounding

Alistair Darling delivered his first Pre-Budget Report (PBR) on 9 October, 2007. One of the related press notices begins with the sentence: "The government recognises the contribution that small businesses make to the economy and that business owners should profit from the success of their business." After reading that, small business owners might have looked forward to the rest of the PBR, to see how the government was going to recognise the contribution they had made, and help them to profit from the success of their business. Sadly, they will have been very disappointed.

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