Coburg Coffee Company is relaunching two of its major brands this year, Langdons of London and Giovanni Rizzi. The company has redesigned the brands to give them a more modern look.The Langdons of London range of traditional roast and ground coffees is available in a variety of whole bean and ground coffee blends.The company is offering wireless hotspots to any coffee outlet ordering 8kg or more of its Giovanni Rizzi brand per month. The company’s research suggests that free access wireless hotspots increase an outlet’s customer base and turnover by at least 8% and as much as 25% in some cases. The package includes free branded marketing material, 24-hour remote monitoring and a plug and play set-up
Irish bakery group McCambridge has outlined plans for Inter Link, after it bought the cake company from administration on July 20.The new enlarged group, which now includes Inter Link’s 11 bakeries, will focus on organic growth, following several acquisitions by Inter Link in recent years, sources told British Baker.Speciality breads and cakes ranges, as well as increasing market share in the UK, will be priorities. The Soreen brand is seen as a particular opportunity for expansion in the UK and Ireland.Inter Link’s Polish bakery will be used as a platform for expansion into European countries, including new EU accession states such as Romania, as well as Germany and Russia.McCambridge plans to brand the expanded business as ’McCambridge’, while developing the individual brands of the various former Inter Link bakeries in the UK, including Yorkshire Cottage Bakeries and Jesse Oldfield.It will keep a regional head office in Blackburn. Some functions will be combined with its offices in Oxford and County Dublin.Meanwhile, several Inter Link creditors have told British Baker that McCambridge is in the process of contacting them and negotiating supply arrangements. One supplier said that following “open” discussions, it had “reached a satisfactory position, supplying the same range as before”.McCambridge management is believed to be working its way around the Inter Link estate and working through a contact list of 1,640 Inter Link creditors. Around 30% of creditors control 80% of the debt, according to sources.Over the past decade McCambridge has grown from a regional Irish business with a bakery in Leinster. Since 1999, three acquisitions have been made in Ireland and six in the UK, in the speciality breads and cakes sector.The six UK acquisitions were WR & SV Hussey, West of England Bakeries, Plymouth Premier Bakeries and Plymouth Premier Pasties, Aldreds the Bakers, Queen of Hearts and Tredinnick Fine Foods.McCambridge chief executive Michael McCambridge said its new Inter Link businesses “have excellent people, famous brands and strong products. It is my intention to ensure that over 90% of the jobs will be protected.”McCambridge had already built up a shareholding in Inter Link of 8.9%, valued at £1m, before Inter Link suspended share trading in June, due to its debt mountain of around £63m.An analyst told British Baker it was “inevitable” that Inter Link would be placed into administration when shares were suspended, after four profit warnings.
A bakery manager at Asda has been promoted after his team won the In-store Bakery of the Year category at the 2007 Baking Industry Awards (BIA).Chris Spoors from Asda in Boldon, South Tyneside, is now the fresh food team leader responsible for bakery, produce, meat, fish and dairy. These areas represent 35% of the store’s £30m a year turnover.”I was delighted to be chosen for the role and was very proud of my team for winning,” said Spoors, whose new job is based at the nearby Benton store.The BIA was given to two managers, Chris Spoors (pictured) and Ed Turnbull, along with their 45 staff.
Front-of-pack nutritional labelling is one of the few catering legislations that bakery retailers usually don’t have to worry about. And with food hygiene, staffing, taxes and other legal paperwork to deal with, it’s an issue few would voluntarily add to their tasks.Legally, any pre-packed food product comes under the Food Labelling Regulations 1996, which denote that “all food which is ready for delivery to the ultimate consumer or to a catering establishment, [should] be marked or labelled.” The requirements stipulate foods must contain a list of ingredients with a quantity indication for certain items, alongside information on storage and a best-before date.But bakery retailers are often exempt from this rule, because they frequently make a good proportion of their stock on-site, to be sold fresh on the day it was made. This means many products are also exempt, as the regulations “do not apply to foods which are not pre-packed when sold to the ultimate consumer; foods pre-packed at the request of the purchaser; or foods pre-packed for sale to the end-consumer.”Labelling benefitsThis being the case, it’s tempting to allow your unlabelled foods to enjoy a reprieve from bureaucracy, but before you dismiss labelling as unnecessary, consider also its benefits.”I believe strongly about food labelling on packaging – perhaps controversially, I believe everybody should be made to label their products responsibly,” says marketing manager Alistair Toal, of Northern Irish bakery Grahams. The family-run outlet has recently taken the move to label its products using the traffic-light system – despite the fact that many are in the red and amber range. This was part of a top-to-bottom corporate social responsibility programme. “We looked at everything from sustainability to our responsibility to the consumer,” he says. “I believe the FSA’s traffic-light system is the clearest and easiest way for the consumer to ascertain the levels of salt and fat and that’s why we chose this format.” Since labels were added to a new line, the effect on sales was difficult to quantify, but PR was positive. “Bakery items have always been seen as a treat, so we don’t think it will stop anyone buying our products,” he reasons.Grahams is urging others to follow its lead and, across the country, a number of weight-loss groups and nutritional information resources are also pressing for information on baked goods to become more widely available.Availability of dataPat Wilson, communications director of online service Weightlossresource.com (WLR) says, “It’s quite frustrating for WLR and its members to be continually told, ’Data is not available for products bought from bakeries’, while most manufacturers and brands are leading the way, giving complete information for their products.”We receive about 50 queries weekly from members asking for the calorie count of bakery products from individual bakeries and supermarket bakeries,” he adds. “We have to find the most similar item we have data for, yet we are in a position where certain outlets and products do not give basic information.”It mystifies us how supermarkets can provide very comprehensive information on their own-brand products, but not their bakery products. People do want to know the nutritional data of foods they eat.”In fact, researchers at Wilson’s have cited bakery pro-ducts as a constant bugbear to maintaining the comprehensive nature of its service, with chains such as Greggs not bothering to reply to requests, and others simply stating “no data available”.With feelings running high, it is little wonder that the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has stepped in and is currently looking at how to approach the issue with bakery retailers. But for the time being, it seems bakery retailers may be caught between a rock and a hard place when it comes to labelling products.”At the moment I wouldn’t advise bakeries to label nutritional values until we have more information from the FSA,” advises Jim Winship of the British Sandwich Association (BSA). “Labelling products correctly is actually quite complicated, and bakeries who put information on labels which is incorrect risk falling foul of Trading Standards.”Unfortunately, it seems that while accurate pack labelling might be easy enough for large supermarkets or sandwich packers, smaller outlets are likely to have a much harder time ensuring consistency – particularly as even a few grams’ discrepancy on an ingredient like salt could turn a well-intentioned practice into a legal risk.”Smaller outlets don’t usually have the facility to monitor what goes into their products as closely as is necessary,” says Winship. “From a large facility, such as a factory, it’s not as difficult to regulate what happens in your products. You’re also more able to offset the costs. At the moment it’s quite expensive to make the kind of nutritional analysis needed for accurate food labels.”So while consumers might be in favour of labelling nutritional content, the industry advice is to hold fire for now. The good news is that the BSA is in liaison with the FSA to introduce new regulations that will afford more leeway to bakery retailers, enabling them to list amounts as more of a guideline, rather than set quantities. Talks are also under way to formulate a ’nutrition calculator’ to calculate what to put on their labels, without having to resort to expensive ingredient analysis.All this might be a few years off, but meanwhile, the BSA is petitioning for guideline nutritional contents in poster form, which can be displayed by retailers. While these won’t list the nutritional quantities of products for specific retailers, they will provide a guide to the type of nutrients consumers might find.It seems likely that if bakery retailers are allowed to label products on nutritional content, how they are labelled will be the next topic. Subway grasped the bull by the horns this month by introducing nutrition guides at counters (see opposite). With supermarkets and the FSA battling over whether the traffic-light system or Guideline Daily Amounts are best, perhaps it’s time bakery retailers involved themselves in the debate, before the choice is made for them.—-=== Food Labelling Regulations 1996 ===Do you know how the labelling law affects you? The current regulations require that: all food which is ready for delivery to the ultimate consumer or to a catering establishment, subject to certain exceptions, [should] be marked or labelled with:l the name of the foodl a list of ingredientsl the appropriate durability indicationl any special storage conditions or conditions of usel the name and address of the manufacturer or packer or of a seller.Exceptions are defined as anything which doesn’t come under the class of pre-packed. So if you bake your own bread on the premises, it need not be labelled. But shipping in packed sandwiches from an external kitchen might subject you to these requirements.
From 30 January British Baker will be publishing Bakers Review in partnership with the National Association of Master Bakers (NAMB).Bakers Review will feature once a month within the pages of British Baker, covering the latest industry, legislation and regulation news as well as general advice on issues affecting craft bakery businesses.This means that British Baker will be the only magazine to target bakers and bakery buyers in craft, wholesale, plant, supermarkets, convenience stores, coffee shops and foodservice.The NAMB has been representing the interests of the craft baking industry throughout England and Wales for over a century.
The UK baking industry faces mounting pressure to reduce costs. Pressure is coming from the consumer and the retailer, but equally importantly, pressure is coming from within its own organisation to ensure survival in these difficult times. Finding ways to reduce costs and make more profit are key drivers.PremiumisationIn developed countries, more and more consumers want quality and luxury, for which they are willing to pay a higher price. They are not just interested in having what they perceive as an everyday treat; they are now looking for a real indulgence as a reward for dealing with the growing pressures of 21st-century living. This trend has been coined “premiumisation”.Research*, recently carried out by an independent market research company on behalf of Muntons, clearly showed that consumers perceive products with the word malt included in the title to be of a higher quality than non-malted equivalents. And they understand that they have to pay more too. Adding malt to a product, to the ingredients declaration and, importantly, to the product title, will bring benefits to the product and also increase consumer desirability. Products with malt in the title can carry a price premium without impacting negatively on consumer demand. The extra cost of including some malt in the recipe is much less than the extra revenue generated by the higher price of the retail product. Customers will taste the difference too.Compare, for example, malt whisky with blended whisky, malt vinegar with “non-brewed condiment” and a standard white loaf with a malted loaf. Which is better and which products carry a premium price? The malted versions cost more, but consumers are happy to pay, because they offer better quality and the taste is superior; the malted version is seen to be a better product. Achieving market premiumisation is also possible by simply adding another flavoured version of an existing product to your range. This strategy is often seen as a form of innovation, with brand extensions appearing in many guises to gain extra shelf space and tease more sales away from competitive products. Remember Kit-Kat? The consumer could only choose between either a four-finger or a two-finger size. Now, in addition to the two different sizes, there are mint, coffee and orange flavours, not to mention Senses, Chunky and ’Peanuts’. Adding malt in one of its forms to one of your standard products and the label creates this simple brand extension and allows premium pricing, boosting profitability plus the consumer benefits from the flavour and texture of malt in the product.Reducing costsMalt is made from barley or wheat, sprouted and kilned, then either ground into flour, flaked or mashed and extracted into malt extract. It is naturally sweet and has that well known “malty” aroma and flavour. What is less well-known is that when added in small amounts (under 5%) to sauces, gravies, biscuits and ice creams, for example, it acts as a flavour enhancer, bringing out the flavours naturally present, which in turn means that fewer spices, flavours and other expensive ingredients are needed, thus reducing cost. For example, when 5% malt extract was added to cheese crackers, it was found that the relatively expensive powdered/dried cheese content could be reduced by at least 10% without any noticeable effect on the final taste. The same effect was noticed in pie fillings, in the sauce or gravy, where the addition of malt extract enhanced the flavour intensity, permitting reductions in other costly ingredients. The sauces also picked up a healthy shine, improving their visual appearance. In both cases, the low percentage of malt inclusion meant there was no addition of malt flavour.In both these examples and in many other instances, the addition of a small amount of malt not only lowers the overall cost of manufacture, but also brings about subtle product enhancements.*Independent market research undertaken by Cogent Research, April 2009
I joined The Bakery School online with a year’s subscription, and also registered three of my staff members to complete the training. I would like to say what a good learning tool this has been for us. We are situated relatively remotely, so attending a college is fairly unrealistic for us, but the online school has definitely filled the void, and more. Not only have the modules been informative and helpful, the support offered by the school has been fantastic.I have sent photos in to them of my mistakes and emailed details of recipes that were not working well for me and, every time, they have delivered fast and accurate answers to resolve my problems, and I have been able to correct my products to achieve great results.It is a great scheme and I would recommend it to anyone. We were originally butchers, but moved into pies four years ago, and bread two years ago, so we have had a lot to learn and really needed all the help we could get. The Bakery School has helped with any issue I have raised and I don’t think there is anything they couldn’t help me with. I really love baking you never stop learning, and with resources like these, the learning happens so much faster.Angela Danskin, Pearsons of Ingleton
National Cupcake Week came to a sweet conclusion on Sunday, with British Baker having whipped up the UK into a frosting frenzy. The idea behind the launch of the week last year was to support the trade by driving footfall into bakeries. We did this with a media and PR campaign, with the backing of our sponsors Renshaw and Chevler and supporters BFP Wholesale and Robert Dyas. This year, the cupcake craze reached new heights; for the first two days, ’National Cupcake Week’ was one of the most popular subjects on social media site Twitter in the UK, according to its Trending league table.Interest snowballed and, before long, everyone from Danni Minogue to former first lady Sarah Brown was tweeting about it. In fact, it was the second most talked-about topic on Twitter for two days running no mean achievement in a week where such watercooler events as the Pope’s visit, Barbara Windsor’s Eastenders exit and George Michael’s imprisonment were getting as much coverage as a meat dress on Lady Gaga.So how did a humble bakery product become one of the most talked-about subjects in the UK? This was the culmination of a five-month build-up, which began with the launch of our second-ever National Cupcake-off, to find Britain’s best cupcake baker. The eco-boutique Hotel Rafayel played host to the August cake judging event, which attracted nearly three times as many entries as last year from professional cupcake bakers. David Bennett of The Sunshine Bakery in North Allerton, Leeds, scooped the title with his banana and mango cupcake.The power of social media meant that, before long, major publications got in on the act, from BBC Good Food to consumer watchdog Which? (no, they actually liked it!), The Guardian and incredibly enough The Spectator.An army of over 200 bakers joined in the campaign, attracting coverage in national papers, and on TV and radio, including the BBC, BBC Radio 4 and Manchester, ITV, Radio Aire and Galaxy Radio even a blog from the Washington Post in the USA. The regional press went to town with stories in Manchester Evening Post, Liverpool Echo, Bath Chronicle, Newcastle Journal, Shields Gazette, Portsmouth News, Yorkshire Evening Post, The Northern Echo, Northants Chronicle & Echo, Urban Life Manchester, Notts Evening Post, Ormskirk Advertiser, Hampstead & Highgate Express.TV channel Food Network joined in the fun as a media partner, giving National Cupcake Week an on-screen and online presence, with two weeks of on-air promotions to drive awareness every half hour. The channel also staged a cupcake art installation event in the Westfield Centre, with 5,000 cupcakes making up a giant image of Olympic boxer James DeGale.With our Facebook and Twitter followership ballooning, hundreds of active blogs posted cupcake-related stories and recipes. Even non-bakers got in on the act, helping to drive awareness of the week. The event was supported on the high street by homewares retailer Robert Dyas, which ran a TV ad campaign during the week to promote its JML giant cupcake mould. Other retailers that took part in the campaign included Hobbycraft and Interflora. Waitrose, Asda, Tesco, M&S, Bart Spices, Ryland Peters & Small, Urban Coffee Company, Lurpak, Breville and Peros.The cupcake craze shows no signs of slowing and we look ahead to making the event bigger and better on 12-18 September 2011!For details, visit the main National Cupcake website page, the official Cupcake Week Face-book page and @CupcakeWeek on Twitter. The first person to mention @CupcakeWeek on Monday morning was MarketingGeni, which offered prizes to businesses with the best answers to the question: “Why does your workplace deserve to win a box of cupcakes?” Many other cupcakers followed suit with launches, prizes and offers including:Food Network UK hosted a consumer competition that attracted 13,000 entries.Coffee Republic launched a signature cupcake, with proceeds going to the Teenage Cancer Trust.The Cake Nest in High Peak, the Peak District ran a Facebook competition to win a baking kit and did a ’cupcake of the day’ every day.www.cupcakestogo.co.uk ran a 10% discount all week to celebrate National Cupcake Week.Baker Rebecca Campbell used National Cupcake Week as an opportunity to launch her bakery, Shut Yer Cakehole, in Nottingham, offering vegan, egg-free, dairy-free and gluten-free cakes, puddings and cookies.Master bakers Kindreds Bakery in Herne Hill ran a week-long ice cream theme for its cupcakes, from cookie dough to mint choc chip.Ella’s Bakehouse ran daily lucky dips to celebrate National Cupcake Week.Leakers Bakery in Bridport made hat-themed cupcakes to tie in with a local hat festival.Meningitis UK launched a new fundraising event called Time 4 Tea to coincide with National Cupcake Week.Alice Rose Cakes & Cookies launched cupcake canapés a bite-sized cupcake that is completely edible, even including the case. Scarlet Bakery had a waiting list, including London Fashion Week and the Pope! Lighting the Twitter touchpaper
New to the UK market are Soja soya flours and ingredients from Austria. Soja produces gluten- and lactose-free whole soy products and is currently supplying into international bakery and pasta brands.These range from enzyme-active soy flour, Soja Austria Pan, to soy flakes, Soja Austria Flakes. The finely ground soy flour is available in various toasting grades, according to customer requirements.”Compared with the American bean, Soja Austria Pan has a higher enzymatic activity, which will allow British bakeries to produce fluffy toast bread and crispy white breads,” claims the firm. “The warm, dry climate of summer in Austria is ideal for the delicate soy plant. Nutritious soil, clean water and well-chosen seeds allow superior quality soybeans to thrive.”In addition, the company supplies soy fibres and nuts, distributed in the UK through Thew Arnott & Co.The products are guaranteed non-GMO.
Alan Stuart is MD of Stuarts of Buckhaven and president of Scottish BakersI’ve been studying the budget airlines and have come up with the solution for all my pie problems. I am launching Easy-Pie.com, which will revolutionise the UK pie industry.Inspired by Simple Simon, my mission statement will be ’One a penny, two a penny’ and I believe that Easy-Pie.com will capture the lion’s share of the market. The website is based on our colleagues in the airline industry. Our pies will sell at the prices quoted in the mission statement, subject to a few modest extras, which will give our customers unprecedented options once unthinkable:-1. Comprehensive food safety insurance covering everything from foot-and-mouth and mad cow disease to bubonic plague and avian flu (only £100 for lifetime cover).2. Comprehensive cost increase insurance, protecting both of us from the effects of price rises like flour, wages, fuel etc (again only £100 for lifetime cover).3. A small credit card charge of £8, which lets you buy up to 10,000 pies at one time.4. The opportunity to customise your pies. For instance, if you want a particular filling, just choose from our menu of over 100, ranging from simple minced beef to venison, sole or even vegetables (surcharge applicable).Want your pies baked? We can do that from only £10 per dozen. However, we regret that during winter months September to June this will be £20 per dozen because our ovens start off much colder during this period.5. You might want to reserve your pies for a particular day (normally we deliver orders to suit ourselves). That is available for the same £10 per dozen no winter surcharge here! Finally, we will pack your order in secure temperature-controlled containers (only £5 each) to ensure absolute freshness on delivery. NB: if no-one is in when we deliver, we will leave the container on your doorstep.6. Credit terms available subject to an annual credit review at £2,500 or 2.5% of average credit balance, whichever is the greater.In certain circumstances, we will impose extra charges:Change of delivery address£50Order amendment£50Dealing with complaints£50So there it is, Easy-pie in a nutshell. How can we fail?All these revolutionary customer benefits add up, in my opinion, to an unbeatable deal. We expect an average selling price, based on our entire range, of no more than £2. Considering all the benefits available we feel that this is tremendous value when compared to our current average cost of £1.Seriously, we can learn a lot by studying the ways of Mr O’Leary and Co. They constantly seek new ways to make money and never lose sight of the fact that only the customer can provide that profit. Daft they are not.