November

Subway supplier Evron to spend £400k on R&D

Bakery manufacturer Evron Foods, which supplies Subway’s breads, is to invest £400k in research and development, to include the investigation of a new sweet muffin-style range.

Bakery nets Merseyside pie deal

After supplying pies to Everton Football Club for several years, Clayton Park Bakery has cornered the football pie market in Merseyside, signing a contract to supply Liverpool Football Club.

The Lancashire-based firm will supply Anfield with a wide range of products for both hospitality and concourse catering. The concourse pie range includes potato and meat; steak; and ‘scouse’ pie, which is made with lamb, potato and vegetables.

The hospitality range includes unusual options such as the breakfast pie, made with gammon, sausage and beans, and a potato, meat and mushy pea pie. The company is also working with Liverpool’s head chef to develop mini pies and an exclusive Liverpool FC pie.

“Football clubs account for around 15% of sales,” said MD Barry Thomas. “It’s a good market to be involved in because of the prestige and exposure for the company.”

Clayton Park supplies pies to football clubs in all four English leagues in the north west, including Oldham Athletic, Rochdale, Preston North End and Accring-ton Stanley. It also supplies Lancashire County Cricket Club, Spar and Booths supermarkets.

North-west baking trade gains £1m grant boost

The baking industry in the north west is set to benefit from over £1m of government investment, which will be used to develop new products and boost production.

The North West Regional Development Agency (NWDA) has awarded grants to Bells of Lazonby, Peter Hunt’s and United Biscuits for a variety of projects in the region.

Bolton-based Peter Hunt’s has secured a £250,000 grant under the Grants for Business Investment (GBI) programme to invest in new equipment, enabling the savouries company to diversify into the £100m par-baked Continental pastries market.

The company believes it could gain 5% of this market within three years. David Wood, Peter Hunt’s MD, said: “The UK imports large quantities of freshly-baked croissants and Danish pastries, available in supermarket in-store bakeries. With the help of this NWDA grant, we will soon be producing high-quality products for this growing UK market from a new production line in Kearsley.”

Meanwhile, Cumbria-based Bells of Lazonby has secured a £480,000 grant from the NWDA under the Grants for Research and Development scheme. The money will be used to improve the nutritional value of ‘free-from’ products by cutting salt, fat and processed sugars and boosting fibre content over a three-year period. As part of the deal, Bells will also invest £1m-£1.5m.

Said Bells’ MD Michael Bell: “This project will bring the principles of thoughtful nutrition to free-from baked goods.”

United Biscuits has also benefited from a £425,000 GBI scheme investment at its Aintree factory, enabling the firm to increase the output of TUC crackers and to start manufacturing Jaffa Cake Bars.

The NWDA is funded by the government, via the Single Budget, and the EU via the European Regional Development Fund. Its budget for 2009/10 is £397m.

Subway supplier Evron to spend £400k on R&D

Bakery manufacturer Evron Foods, which supplies Subway’s breads, is to invest £400k in research and development, to include the investigation of a new sweet muffin-style range.

The investment has been supported by an offer of over £140,000 from Invest NI, with funding from the European Regional Development Programme.

The firm, which manufactures a range of chilled, frozen and ambient breads and pastries for the retail, foodservice, wholesale and food processing sectors, now hopes to increase its current turnover of approximately £20m by 50% within the next three years.

It has also appointed a new commercial manager and key account manager as part of its plan to drive the business forward.

“With the support of Invest NI, we now hope to achieve additional efficiencies by further strengthening our management team, while increasing our foothold in the retail bakery market around the UK and Ireland with our new sweet muffin range,” said Morris Evans, managing director, Evron Foods.

He said alongside the constant challenge of meeting and exceeding customer expectations, the firm has also faced increasing pressure on its overheads. “Flour, butter and electricity costs have all risen dramatically in recent times, but this further motivates us to be innovative in how we do things,” he added.

Ginsters uses technology to bring bakery to classroom

Students studying the Diploma in Manufacturing and Product Design (MPD) can now gain access to Ginsters’ Callington Bakery without leaving their classroom, thanks to online video conferencing technology.

Using free Skype communication software, pupils are able to talk directly to staff at Ginsters and look around the bakery as part of course projects and assignments.

The new Diploma in MPD targets students aged between 14 and 19 and mixes practical and theoretical work on food manufacturing and product development, including at least 10 days’ work experience.

“At Ginsters, we have worked with schools and colleges in Plymouth and Cornwall for many years. But we noticed that visits were decreasing year-on-year.

It seems that new challenges associated with taking a class of young people on a visit were responsible for this reduction. These included transport, health and safety, financial and time-tabling issues,” said Chris Schaffer, bakery training and education co-ordinator at Ginsters.

“We didn’t want this to affect our ability to help schools, especially with the new work-relevant requirements of the Diploma in MPD, so we decided to use Skype. Now, thanks to this technology, we can give students access to our facilities and the expertise of our staff.”

Schaffer, who has signed up to become an employer champion for the Diploma in MPD, has also developed an educational website to support Ginsters’ activity.

Ginsters uses technology to bring bakery to classroom

Students studying the Diploma in Manufacturing and Product Design (MPD) can now gain access to Ginsters’ Callington Bakery without leaving their classroom, thanks to online video conferencing technology.

Sandwich chain Henry Healy’s shops for sale

Glasgow-based sandwich chain Henry Healy’s five former shops are now up for sale after the business went into liquidation in October.

Starbucks opens first new-look store

Starbucks has opened its first “bespoke” store in Conduit Street, London, as part of a strategy to roll out locally-inspired coffee shops across the UK.

Big Bakery Debate consultation document now online

The Big Bakery Debate has now taken place and the consultation document, which has been sent to the Food Standards Agency (FSA), is now available to download as a free white paper on the bakeryinfo.co.uk.

Northern Foods’ major plant investment leads to job losses

Northern Foods has announced it is to plough £26.5m into its Fox’s Biscuits brand in an investment that could see new automated technology replace hundreds of jobs.

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