A REDUNDANCY deal has been accepted by the majority of staff at Irish Pride’s Keatings Bakery in Kanturk, Co Cork, which closed on March 16, writes Ann Marie Foley.“People are very happy with the settlement terms which are five weeks per year of service and statutory notice where applicable,” said Martin Hanlon, regional officer, Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union.Up to 10 van and sales staff and two dispatch staff retain their jobs at the site. The manufacturing function moves to the parent company, Irish Pride’s, Mayo and Wexford plants which have spare capacity. None of the other 76 full-time and 20 part-time staff will relocate.The closure went ahead in spite of intervention with top management by two government ministers, Micheal Martin, Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment and the Minister for State, Batt O’Keeffe.
Greggs blamed unseasonably mild and wet weather for particularly disappointing trading in the four weeks to 7 October.The bakery group announced like-for-like sales in the second half of the year (19 weeks to 28 October) up 0.2% and it added that the Christmas period would be critical to its success for the full-year.Group managing director Sir Michael Darrington said: “Our results for the year as a whole will depend on performance in the remaining nine weeks of the second half, and particularly over the Christmas period.”He added that consumer react- ion to the launch of its Greggs’ Healthier Options range of reduced fat and salt products had been encouraging, and that it would introduce other innovatory trials next year.Greggs has 1,334 shops under its two brands, an increase of 15 since the end of 2005.
Rank Hovis will be sponsoring this year’s Kart Grand Prix, an annual charity event that raises money for the Bakers’ Benevolent Fund, which raised over £2,250 last year.People in the industry can either register drivers or sponsor a prize. Both experienced karters and complete novices can attend. This year’s event is to be held at Daytona Raceway, Milton Keynes Thursday 27 September, 10.30am-4.00pm.Email [email protected] or tel 01494 428505.
Northern Foods’ bakery division has seen like-for-like sales increase by more than 10% in its second quarter following a period of decline in Q1.Like-for-like sales for the 26 weeks to 2 October 2010 grew by 3.3% within bakery, with sales up 10.9% in Q2 following a 5.6% drop in Q1. The firm said its biscuit volume growth had returned to “normal levels” following its decision to return to promotional activity after the World Cup. Major investment in automated technology for Fox’s Biscuits is also proceeding to plan, it added.The firm has also announced a new organisational structure in a bid to streamline the business and achieve cost savings. Its current three divisions: Bakery, Chilled and Frozen, will become two: Branded and Chilled.Its Branded division will comprise Goodfella’s Pizza, McDougalls and Holland’s Pies, Fox’s Biscuits and Matthew Walker Puddings, while its Chilled division will combine sandwiches and salads with ready meals and its British Airways supply business.
Crantock Bakery is aiming to fill a gap in the market for frozen savouries that are baked-off at home by consumers as it launches its first branded range.Following market research into the £1bn pie and savoury snacks market, the Cornish firm identified opportunities in the premium chilled and frozen sector, and has launched Crantock’s Finest Frozen range, for meals at home, and a Finest Chilled range for eating on-the-go. “There are currently no frozen pasties or pork pies available, nor is there a premium large-size sausage roll in the freezer cabinet,” according to Crantock’s research report.Cornish pasties now account for 9.1% of the pie and savoury snacks market in value terms, with value up 10.1% growing ahead of volume up 2.3% according to recent Nielsen data (52 weeks to 20 March 2010). “Until now, branded products have been driving the value in frozen, while own label is driving volume. We believe Crantock’s bake-at-home range will do both: increase volume and enhance value.” The launches form part of the bakery’s aim to create a £30m brand over the next five years.National accounts controller Ross Beatie told British Baker the firm will target the range at the major grocery retailers, including Budgens, Spar and Londis.Both ranges feature tradi-tional handmade Cornish pasties, handmade Davidstow cheddar and onion pasties, handraised pork pies and jumbo sausage rolls.
The Scottish Association of Master Bakers (SAMB) is training bakers in places as far afield as Cornwall, London and Northern Ireland after being recognised by the National Skills Academy for Food & Drink Manufacturing as the main craft bakery training body.The organisation offers Food Manufacture National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs) for staff aged over 19 at Levels 2 and 3 and the Food and Drink Manufacture Modern Apprenticeship programme to all young people aged 16 to 18. These on-the-job craft-based training programmes have been developed by the SAMB and are fully funded by the Skills Funding Agency across England, Scotland and NI. Employers do not have to pay for employees to take part in the 12-month courses beyond releasing their staff during the on-site training visit.Twenty-five firms in England have already signed up to the schemes in locations such as Cornwall, Devon, Essex, London, the Midlands and Yorkshire, while in Scotland the SAMB is now working with 75 businesses.”We were approved by the Food and Drink Skills Academy earlier this year and are already working with bakeries outside Scotland, but we hope a lot more will get in touch as English and NI bakeries find out about us,” said David Allison training manager, England. “Both the adult and apprenticeship recruitment service and training programmes offer a real opportunity for the sector to further develop the skills of its people. In the current economic climate access to free training may become a thing of the past, so please take the opportunity while it is available.”At this year’s Baking Industry Awards, Macphie of Glenbervie employee Kyle Hendry won the the Trainee Baker of the Year category, sponsored by Improve, after working with the SAMB training arm.
A front-runner in UK bagel manufacturing, Maple Leaf Bakery has invested in the redevelopment of its branded bagel range and hopes to widen its eating occasions. Georgi Gyton finds out moreThere are several stories about how the humble bagel came to be. Some believe the word bagel is derived from the German word ’buegel’, meaning stirrup. It has been said that, in 1683, a Viennese baker wanted to pay tribute to the King of Poland, who had saved the people of Austria from an onslaught of Turkish invaders, by producing a roll resembling a stirrup, in commemoration of the king’s favourite pastime. Others say bagels were invented much earlier in Poland, as a competitor to the bublik, a lean bread of wheat flour designed for Lent, and were a staple part of the Polish diet in the 16th and 17th centuries. All I know is that they are amazing when toasted and filled with bacon and cream cheese.Whatever their origins, bagels made it big in America after Jewish immigrants bought them over around the end of the 19th century. Bagel businesses thrived in New York City, and there was even a union dedicated to them. As with many things Americana, they also made their way across to UK shores, where companies such as Maple Leaf Bakery UK have driven the market considerably. Bagels are something the Americans are very passionate about, with shops such as H&H bagels in New York City seen as a destination outlet. The shop has even been used in number of major Hollywood movies. This passion is what Maple Leaf is hoping to instil in UK consumers.Maple Leaf make-upThe business, part of Canada Bread which is 89.8% owned by another Canadian firm Maple Leaf Foods is focused around three product groupings: bagels the origin of the business; and Viennoiserie and speciality, which were acquired businesses. It also produces some sliced and ISB bread. Its bagel business is concentrated in Rotherham, with Maple Leaf the first company on a commercial scale in the UK to use the traditional bagel-making process, which involves passing the dough through boiling water before baking it.Despite the growth of the bagel market over the past 10-15 years, the firm was keen to drive even faster growth of the market by getting consumers to eat bagels more frequently, and to encourage them to use them for a variety of different eating occasions not just breakfast. Following months of research, the redevelopment of its bagel recipe and, subsequently, the production process, the firm has announced it is to relaunch its New York Bakery Co brand in early-January 2011, backed up by a £2.4m marketing drive. The new-look and -taste bagel, along with revamped packaging and a new ad campaign, is designed to bring a taste of New York to Blighty.When marketing director Simon Foster joined Maple Leaf UK in January this year, he decided to find out what was working at the firm and what wasn’t. After visiting the plant in Rotherham, undertaking extensive consumer research and visiting the heartland of the bagel, New York City, he jokes that he probably knows more about bagels than is healthy. “We asked our customers for feedback on what we were doing well, and not so well, which helped us understand how we can get this business growing at the rate it deserves to,” says Foster.He says a key visit for him was the trip to New York, in order to find out and understand what New Yorkers’ views on bagels were. And what did he find out? Well, that New Yorkers have an “almost manic passion” for bagels, like the English alternative of a passionate real-ale drinker. He says they all had an opinion on where the best place to get a bagel was, and about what constitutes a truly authentic bagel. “If we’re being honest, we once knew what that was in the UK, but we’ve wandered from that path,” he adds.The product has been reformulated, so that it can be used un-toasted throughout its shelf-life, whereas the old bagel was only really suitable for toasting at the end of life, says Foster. The new recipe is around 10% heavier than the old one, the bagels are now fatter and have a smaller hole; the size of the hole being very important in determining the authenticity of the New York-style bagel, says Foster. According to Americans it should be no bigger than a dime (around 17mm in diameter), or it’s a reject. Incidentally, the smaller hole makes the bagel more suitable for sandwiches, as your filling will be less likely to fall out. It also makes the product a lot bolder, which helps tackle the challenge of visibility in the morning goods fixture, explains Foster.The new pack design features varied strips of colour on the front of the pack to represent the different flavours, and has a “tasteful New York red brick” style. It needs to maintain the aesthetic of a premium food product, but bolder colours will have more impact on-shelf, he explains. The firm has also invested heavily in the quality of the ingredients it uses, including much better-quality flour, he adds. The relaunched range will feature six varieties, available in a five-pack format: plain, cinnamon & raisin, sesame, multi-seeded, onion and a new addition wholemeal. Its top three sellers plain, cinnamon & raisin and sesame will also be available in four-packs.Research resultsThe firm carried out ’usage and attitude’ research, quizzing 600 consumers for 20 minutes each about bagels. “We asked them chapter and verse about their bagel consumption what? where? when? why? and how? We set out to investigate how to drive consumer value in all aspects of our product, from the recipe and packaging to promotion and advertising,” explains Foster. “We found out a number of things we didn’t know before. Firstly that consumers don’t have bagels top of mind when they walk into a food retailer. The usage and attitude research showed that 62% of bagel purchases were bought on impulse, compared to 38% of consumers who actually had them on their shopping list,” he explained. “Consumers will walk through the sliced bread aisle and buy whatever they need from there, then they will turn the corner into morning goods and, at that point, they’re shopping free-style, they’re open to suggestions, thinking about what they might have for the weekend brunch occasion.” Interestingly, the research showed that consumers weren’t put off by the cost, he says, it was just that they had forgotten about bagels as an option.Managing director Peter Baker reiterates: “It’s about getting bagels to consumers’ front-of-mind again, in an area that’s traditionally a discretionary purchase. It’s also about moving them from single usage to wider usage.” UK consumers tend to just eat them for breakfast, either toasted or not at all, so there is a big opportunity for growth, adds Foster. Across the pond, for example, they use them for lunch, as an alternative for sandwich bread, and they don’t just toast them, he says. “We need to educate UK consumers that bagels are great for lunch as well – it’s a huge opportunity.” Adds Baker: “The product we had in the past was not very amenable to do that, because it was much better toasted. We’ve now changed the product proposition so it is a much more acceptable lunchtime eat as well.”Foster says the bagel market is far from mature, and although he is realistic enough to know that not everyone is going to buy bagels as often as they buy sliced bread, he says if Maple Leaf can get those consumers already buying bagels, to buy them twice as often, then that would be a notable result. Bagel facts lBagels are bought by 23% of UK households, with 640 bagels eaten every minute in the UK (source: AC Nielsen Scantrack and Homescan, MAT to October 2010)lNew York Bakery Co bagels are bought by 15.2% of UK households, 3.5 times a yearlThe firm has 47.6% market share (by value) up 1.4% year-on-year (source AC Nielsen Scantrack and Homescan, MAT to October 2010) How bagel sales figures stack up According to the latest data from Kantar Worldpanel, plant and ISB bagel sales saw a 1.89% increase overall to £46.1m for the 52 weeks to 31 October 2010. Sales of plant bagels increased 3.6% yoy from £37.3m to £38.7m, while sales of ISB bagels, dipped 6.21% yoy from £7.9m to £7.4m over the same time frame. Despite the overall increase in spend, volumes were down, falling 1.07% for plant bagels, and 2.94% for ISB.
The recent riots have highlighted a need for business owners to ensure they have no gap between insurance covers. We have been inundated with calls from business owners in the riot-hit areas, who have let their cover lapse and are now wanting cover. This presents a problem as we are unable to backdate cover.It has also highlighted a need to renew your business insurance as early as possible as it is now becoming difficult to place insurance within the riot-hit areas. The Association Of British Insurers offers the following advice, which NAMB Insurance echoes:”We have every sympathy for residents and business owners who have suffered damage to their properties. This is a time of enormous stress for them, and their insurers will be on hand to answer any questions that they may have. Home insurance should cover people for fire, looting or damage caused. Many policies will also cover people for accommodation costs if they cannot stay in their home.”Most commercial insurance policies will cover businesses for damage to their premises, including the interruption to their business as a result. Some policies will also cover those businesses which are not damaged, but whose trade is affected by the aftermath. It is important for people to contact their insurer to check what they are covered for and arrange for immediate help. It is too early for us to have an accurate picture of total costs, especially business interruption costs, but insurers are working hard to deal with claims coming in, which will give a sense of the level and cost of damage.”Stuart Knowles, affinity manager, National Association of Master Bakers Insurance
London craft bakery chain Wenzel’s is defying the tough economic climate with a £1m revamp of its 20 stores and plans to boost the chain to 30 outlets in the next year.The Pinner-based company expects the new-look stores to boost takings by at least 10%, with the introduction of new signage and photography, highlighting the company’s craft bakery skills. Wenzel’s packaging and website have also been redesigned and new ’pick-up’ areas will encourage more impulse purchases.The refresh, which has been undertaken with the help of design company Ech, began last month and is expected to be completed by the spring of 2012.At the same time, the company is planning to open a further 10 outlets over the next 12 months, starting with a new store in Edgware this month. Wenzel’s also hopes to open more branches in tube stations, including Victoria and Marylebone, which will join existing sites at Bakerloo and Harrow on the Hill.Sarah Wenzel, owner, said: “Because of the economic climate there are good deals out there on units. We own a lot of our properties freehold, so we are quite a cash-rich business. The expansion will be self-funded.”Sales across the chain have been buoyant since August, she added, thanks to several new initiatives, such as more meal deals, customer feedback schemes and a Facebook campaign. “We’re also more focused on upselling and have invested significantly in staff training,” she said. “We have monthly managers’ meetings where we talk about the products that we need to focus on and have introduced a new bonus scheme.”
CoronavirusIndianaLocalNews Google+ By Jon Zimney – June 7, 2020 0 489 Pinterest Twitter Twitter Food Bank of Northern Indiana mobile food distribution for the week ahead Pinterest Facebook Facebook (Photo supplied/Food Bank of Northern Indiana) Food Bank of Northern Indiana Mobile Food Distributions – June 8 – 12, 2020Monday, June 8, 2020 – Elkhart County10 a.m. – Noon EDTWHERE: Kroger, 209 Chicago Avenue, Goshen, IN 46528*This mobile food distribution is possible through grant funding provided by United Way of Elkhart & LaGrange Counties and will provide for up to 500 households.Tuesday, June 9, 2020 – St. Joseph County 10 a.m. – Noon EDTWHERE: Hand2Hand Community Center, 4612 W. Western Avenue, South Bend, IN 46619Wednesday, June 10, 2020 – Kosciusko County10 a.m. – Noon EDTWHERE: Wawasee High School, 1 Warrior Path, 12609 N. Syracuse Road, Syracuse, IN 46567Wednesday, June 10, 2020 – LaPorte County10 a.m. – Noon CDTWHERE: Marquette Mall Parking Lot, (Outside of J.C. Penny), 201 W. US 20, Michigan City, IN 46360Thursday, June 11, 2020 – Marshall County10 a.m. – Noon EDTWHERE: Kroger, 2001 N. Michigan Street, Plymouth, IN 46563Thursday, June 11, 2020 – St. Joseph County3 p.m. – 5 p.m. EDTWHERE: Food Bank of Northern Indiana, 702 Chapin Street, South Bend, IN 46601Friday, June 12, 2020 – Starke County10 a.m. – Noon CDTWHERE: Knox Elementary School, 210 W. Culver Road, Knox, IN 46534Fresh perishable items and dry goods offered free of charge. All items will be pre-boxed and pre-bagged. First come, first served, for up to 400 households while supplies last for those in need of food assistance. One per household.This will be a drive-thru distribution. Please remain in your vehicle and pop open your trunk to receive your items. An area will be available to load items if your trunk does not open. Google+ Previous articleMiddlebury man, 19, arrested on suspicion of rape, kidnappingNext articleGoshen man on motorcycle seriously hurt in crash Jon ZimneyJon Zimney is the News and Programming Director for News/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel and host of the Fries With That podcast. Follow him on Twitter @jzimney. WhatsApp WhatsApp