Cups target dry food-to-go trend

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first_imgFinnish packaging board producer Stora Enso is producing airtight paperboard cups for European food brand owners. The new cups are used for packing dry foods, including snacks, cereals and confectionery.The firm says the paperboard cup meets growing consumer demand for environmentally sustainable packaging and user-friendly convenience. The cup, based on Stora Enso’s paperboards with high barrier coatings to protect food from moisture and grease, is said to be suited to the ‘eat on the go’ market.last_img read more

King’s fresh approach

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first_imgSainsbury’s showed its unequivocal support for bakery when it launched its sector-specific apprentice scheme earlier this year. Much of the retailer’s recent policy has been influenced by its hands-on CEO Justin King, whose interest in the bakery and fresh produce sectors of the multiple are clear.”There are two parts of the store that stand out in customers’ minds – the produce department and the bakery,” he says. “They are absolutely vital if you are setting out your stall – as we are – to be a quality fresh food retailer. Our goal is to exceed customer expectations in fresh, healthy, safe and tasty food. Nothing delivers against that better than produce and bakery, partly because they are both high-frequency purchase items.”This forms part of his plan to “make Sainsbury’s great again”. When King joined the company he says the supply chain clearly wasn’t working, it had stopped competing in the market on price and there was navel-gazing on whether its middle market position was the correct place to be.”Part of any chief executive’s role is to rally the business to its cause. There was a sense the people were waiting for me to tell them what the business cause was. Three things we had to address were availability, pricing and clarity of what the company stood for.”Back to the floorKing’s approach is very hands on. Every Friday is spent visiting stores, usually unannounced. On the day of my interview, he was planning to work a late shift from 6pm to 2am in a store and said he would be filling shelves, walking the floor and definitely spending some time in the bakery, seeing what challenges exist.Rather than baking once a day first thing, Sainsbury’s now bakes throughout the day. King clearly feels this is an important response to the way shopping trends are moving – from a weekly shop to more frequent visits to the supermarket.”We are seeing a shift – people are shopping more regularly and re-engaging with fresh food. There is a rediscovery of fresh food, the variety available and how food tastes different and better when it is fresher. Fresh produce and bakery are the two key areas of the store.”Half our custom comes after 4pm, so if you’re not baking bread at that time of day, you’re depriving customers of the opportunity to buy it fresh. In our larger stores, we would expect all of the core loaves from our range to have at least one bake after 4pm. If you go into our stores at 8pm, you can buy a fresh French stick or crusty loaf baked at perhaps 6pm. That has been a really important part of the process. By delivering that fresh product later on in the day, we’ve made our sales rocket.”King points to the fact that bread baking is incredibly visual and the smell extremely evocative. “I wouldn’t in any way dismiss plant bread as it forms an important part of the overall mix and there has been some tremendous innovation in the sector over the last few years – such as trying to get more wholegrain back into bread and reducing salt. But we’re trying to take advantage of the fact that we have the ability to make fresh bread in-store.”He says there’s no point having in-store bakeries that make products similar to those of the plant bakers. “Our in-store bakeries contribute a number of things. Seeing people actually producing the bread has an impact on people’s view – not just of the bread sector but of the whole store. Also the smell of bread drifting across the store is perceived as welcoming. Baking bread is one of the few craft skills one now sees in a grocery store. You don’t often see a butcher cutting a piece of meat or a fishmonger filleting a fish. In reality, most people buy meat or fish pre-prepared. With bread, though, you can stand in front of a bakery at almost any time of day and see the bread being baked.”salt targetsThe current health agenda is very much in King’s sights – in the in-store bakeries as well as in food in general. “There is massive progress that has been made on salt reduction,” he says. “We have generally achieved the government’s 2011 target in its five key areas. Then we have removed hydrogenated fats from all of our Taste the Difference products. It came out of all of our breads and, by the end of February, we should have removed hydrogenated fats as an added ingredient from all of Sainsbury’s products. Customers don’t necessarily notice this background work, but it has an impact on their overall long-term health and well-being.”The much more visible move Sainsbury’s has made is with its Wheel of Health labelling on products, which highlights nutritional content using colours to signify if a product has a high, medium or low content of certain ingredients.”We launched it at the start of 2005,” says King. “In common with all retailers and a few suppliers, we were engaged with the Food Standards Agency back in 2004 when it started the debate about how health labelling and products could be improved. Very early on, it was clear that there were two points of view – those who believed front-of-pack labelling should happen and those who believed it shouldn’t happen at all. Also, there were those in favour of traffic light labelling and others for guideline daily amounts.”Our customers told us very clearly that GDAs are already on the back of packaging and were useful. But they also said the real challenge came when they had to make a decision at the shelf edge and that traffic light labelling would help.”train to winAs Sainsbury’s bakery apprentice scheme demonstrates, educating young people about food and giving them a career opportunity in the sector is important to the retailer.King says he feels aware that bakery as a career is an industry responsibility, first and foremost. “I don’t hold truck with business people bleating about the situation, saying something must be done and the government must do it. If we, as an industry, and as a supermarket, wish to bake bread in our stores – which we do because that’s what our customers want – we have a responsibility to do our bit for training. That’s the nature of a free market economy. The reason we got to the state we were in is because, for a long time, there was a slow, steady decline in craft bakery skills in our stores. We were as guilty of allowing that as others.”Our bakery apprentice scheme is only a scratch on the surface, but we’ve been hugely enthused by the response we’ve got. People have started to wake up to the fact that bakery has the potential to be a lifelong and fulfilling career.”Having said that, King feels the government does have a part to play in providing appropriate incentives to sit behind apprenticeship schemes. “One of the things we’re concerned about is that government funding to support apprenticeship schemes stops at the age of 25; we think that’s a real mistake. The government needs to move to a position of lifetime learning. It’s taken a stance of trying to give people a start in life and that’s fantastic, but with the new age discrimination law, you wonder whether the government’s current policy on apprenticeship projects can survive.”The point, he says, is that many people are likely to start a new career several times in their lives. “At 40, for example, you’re still likely to have at least 25 productive years left. So why on earth wouldn’t you want to retrain as a baker aged, 40, 50 or 60?Start youngEducation on food at a young age is, feels King, contributory to young people coming into bakery. “There used to be an unfashionable subject called home economics on the school curriculum, where you made flapjacks, pizzas and other things but you did learn some basic stuff. How on earth did we get to a place where we felt it wasn’t part of a normal education for a child between the ages of 4-16 to be taught a basic understanding of food; how to cook it, how to eat healthily.”King believes the issues that Sainsbury’s and the baking industry should stand up and be counted on are: the availability of people to bake bread, ensuring that bakery is articulated as a fantastic career; a focus on freshness and quality, as the over-arching trend that people will eat less food of higher quality; plus the aspects of health and innovation around salt, fibre and fat.These are the key issues on which he is already driving Sainsbury’s bakery business forward and, as a model for the industry at large, it’s one to watch.—-=== The route to becoming Sainsbury’s CEO ===I suppose if you sat down and wrote a CV for the prospective chief executive of Sainsbury’s, it would look pretty much like mine,” says King. “You’d want someone who had worked for both retailers and manufacturers and someone who’d had a pretty varied experience in the supply chain, in terms of working in manufacturing, marketing, sales and in shops. And, because of the challenges faced by Sainsbury’s at the time, you’d want someone with good experience of both the value side of the equation , which I have from working with Asda, and the quality side, which I gained from working at M&S and various branded companies.”The retailers’ non-executive directors recruited King to Sainsbury’s. Their biggest concern at the time, he reveals, was whether Sainsbury’s could be successful in the middle ground it occupied or whether it needed to move itself more upmarket or much more downmarket to solve the problems it faced. “I held very strong views that the so-called middle ground was actually where most consumers are most of the time,” says King. “They want to feel they can buy their shopping at a fair price, but also buy something a little better when they can afford it. And they don’t want to feel they are skimping unnecessarily. It seemed to me that positioning wasn’t the problem, so much as the execution. That’s what I told the board and that played a big part in why they offered me the job. This ultimately formed the backbone of our recovery plans.”—-=== Baking in the blood ===Not everyone may realise that baking forms part of Sainsbury’s CEO Justin King’s family background. His maternal grandparents were bakers and he has distant memories of the business – a chain of five stores called Dugdale & Adams in central London.King himself only remembers one store, his great uncle’s. “Family legend has it that my grandfather was one of five sons in the family and they each had a store when their father, my great grandfather, retired from the business. The one I remember was in Gerrard Street in Soho. We used to stay above it regularly when we visited London because it was slap bang in the middle of Chinatown. It had a very eclectic range as its location meant it served a huge variety of businesses, ranging from West End hotels through to more ethnic businesses, with many small batches of strange and multi-coloured loaves. It was a sandwich shop with a bakery and delivery business; they used to shoot off at 4am in the morning to deliver to all the main hotels in time for breakfast.”King’s own grandfather’s store was sold in the early 1960s. But he has keen memories of his grandfather. “I don’t think he ever bought a loaf of bread in his life. When we stayed at his house, there was always bread at some stage in the making; either he was making the dough or it was proving. So at the age of around five or six, my grandfather taught me how to make bread. I have to admit I’m not sure I could make a loaf of bread now, although I did retrain at Asda.”My grandfather worked well into his mid-80s,” adds King. “He retired to the south coast but worked for a multiple bakery chain called Pegrums in Worthing. He was financial director there and was still going in one or two days a week until his later years. I think he used to go in and tell the bakers they weren’t making good enough bread and make a bit himself!”Entrepreneurial spiritKing’s work ethos is strong. As one of four brothers, he was raised in a family where industriousness was encouraged and, even at school, he had part-time jobs, doing a paper round and washing cars. But he fights shy of being described an entrepreneur.”I think it would be an insult to people who are true entrepreneurs and start up their own businesses to call me an entrepreneur, as I’ve always worked in large corporations. But I’ve always tried to bring an entrepreneurial spirit to the jobs I do. That’s about courage, convictions and being prepared to take risks and learn from your mistakes. It’s why children should do competitve sports and other challenges. It gives them drive and the will to win early on. If we remove that from society it will be a monstrous mistake. We won’t grow the same entrepreneurs and leaders that we did in the past.last_img read more

Sandwich guru

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first_imgLast year, we at the SoHo Sandwich Co were awarded the coveted prize of Sandwich Designer of the Year, writes Adam Gilbert. This award was extremely well-contested across the country, with hundreds of excellent sandwiches being entered by some of the country’s leading sandwich retailers and manufacturers, so it came as a real shock to us when were awarded this magnificent title.We were similarly delighted to be offered a regular slot in British Baker to share some of the great sandwich recipes that we are constantly creating here, with the people who matter most to us sandwich manufacturers: ’the baker’.So where better to start than with our winner? I don’t want to sound over-confident but we really knew it was a winner the first time we put it together. For the sandwich we make our own tomato chilli jam. However, you could replace the jam with a good-quality Thai sweet chilli sauce or a spicy tomato chutney. We roast off sliced sweet potato with olive oil, garlic and rosemary for a cracking sandwich.  == Ingredients == Spicy Spanish Thinly Sliced Chorizo Sausage 60gRoasted Sweet Potato 50gTomato Chilli Jam 30gAlfalfa Sprouts 15gBaby Spinach 15gTomato Ciabattini Piatta Loaf 1last_img read more

Apprenticeship funding made available

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first_imgThe baking industry could benefit from new government plans to make over £10m of funding available to businesses, with the launch of a trial to develop Apprenticeship Expansion Programmes.The trials will be delivered through the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) and funding of £10m will be available to employers over the next three years. It is hoped this will increase the number of apprenticeship vacancies available and fill skills gaps.Funding will be available to large businesses and groups of small and medium-sized businesses, which currently run high-quality apprenticeships. Financial support is available to meet any additional costs associated with the trials, such as the wage, training and management costs of learners.“Given the current economic slowdown, it is important that companies continue training their staff to maintain productivity and a competitive edge,” said David Way, national director of apprenticeships. “Employing apprentices is an ideal way for businesses to position themselves as leaders for the recovery.”Interested bakeries should contact the Learning and Skills Council by calling 024 7682 3668 or visiting www.lsc.gov.uk. The deadline for expressions of interest is 16 January, 2009.last_img read more

Made in Manhattan

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first_imgWandering the mean streets of New York, it’s clear that the low-carb diet craze of a few years ago has long since been forgotten. Despite rumours of a resurgence, it seems like almost everyone rushing around Manhattan is either munching on a bagel or clutching an artisan loaf.According to Euromonitor, value sales of baked goods in the US grew by 2% in 2007 to approach US$44 billion. In New York, coffee chains such as Starbucks have a strong presence, but independent bakery shops are also a common sight, selling sandwiches and sweet treats to eat in or take away, alongside bread and large cakes for eating at home.The trend for artisan breads is noticeably more developed than the UK, with almost all the bakery shops I came across offering a staggering range of European-style loaves. Euromonitor estimates that more than half of all bakery sales in the US come from artisan products.Balthazar Bakery, in downtown Manhattan, is a good example of the trend. It sells focaccia, ciabatta, pain au levain and pain de siegle (made with rye flour), to name but a few, from a small shop designed to resemble an old-fashioned Parisian boulangerie. It also supplies several other retailers in the city, including the bakery section at the famous Dean & Deluca food hall.Here you can find loaves such as organic spelt and seven-grain bread, which are stacked up to achieve an Aladdin’s cave effect – a display style that is popular throughout bakery shops in the city. At around $4 (£2) for a small a loaf, it’s obvious that New Yorkers are willing to pay extra for something special.Amy Scherber of Amy’s Bread also supplies Dean & Deluca. She says that customers at her four bakery shops in the city want a ’full service’ of bread, breakfast items, coffee and sandwiches, as well as treats and snacks. “Customers also expect highly educated staff, fast service and reasonable prices. They have high expectations and demand quality,” she says.Scherber’s best-selling products include French baguettes, Rustic Italian and Country White, which are made with unbleached flour. Small loaves (225g) and dinner rolls are also popular with a high percentage of single households in the city.Independent bakeries continue to be dominant in New York, because of the tough trading conditions, she adds. “People shop locally and don’t want to walk very far. The big chains find it hard to operate in NYC. The rent is too high, margins are too low, staffing is difficult and distribution is a huge problem. So the smaller bread stores are what you find, along with some upscale retail grocery stores.”These ’upscale’ grocery stores include Whole Foods Market, which has four stores in Manhattan, each with its own in-house bakery, and Fairway Market, which, alongside sourdoughs and rye bread, offers Jewish products such as babka (a type of cake) challah bread and around a dozen types of bagels including ’flagels’ (flat bagels), Russian pumpernickel and mini bagels.The Bread Alone bakery stall at the Union Square farmers market is also a popular destination for upmarket bread, selling organic sourdoughs, spelt loaves and focaccia, which are made in the company’s wood-burning oven at its bakery in the Catskills. It all adds up to a city that has obviously fallen back in love with the loaf.last_img read more

Starbucks’ woes continue with further store closures

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first_imgStarbucks has announced plans to close a further 300 underperforming stores – 200 in the US and 100 internationally – however details have yet to be released on whether UK stores will be affected.Starbucks is the fourth biggest bakery retailer in the UK behind Greggs, Subway and Costa, according to the British Baker Top 50 league table of bakery retailers, based on store numbers in 2008; it opened 99 stores in the UK last year. The proposed store closures are part of the company’s “cost saving initiatives”, which could see up to 6,000 employees out of a job worldwide. A spokesperson for Starbucks said: “We do not at this time have specific details about numbers of partners or stores that may be impacted by these announcements in the UK.” In 2008, Starbucks announced it was to close 600 of its company-operated US stores last year and 61 in Australia, costing the firm $75.5m in pre-tax restructuring costs. It has also reduced its new company-operated store openings target from 200 to 140 in the US, and from 270 to 170 internationally, in fiscal 2009.In the coffee chain’s financial statement for the quarter ended 28 December 2008, it reported a fall in consolidated operating income to $117.7m, compared to $333.1m for the same year period last year.Consolidated net revenue of 6% on the same period last year fell to £2.6bn, which it put down to “a decline in store sales of 9%”. Revenue in the US dropped 6% and international revenue was down 8%.“Starbucks has been looking at all parts of the business to manage our cost structure and align the organisation in the most efficient way possible for the long term. Our priority during this time is to prepare for the continued uncertainty in the economy and ensure we have a strong foundation to support our long-term goals,” added the Starbucks spokesperson.last_img read more

Charity begins in-store

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first_imgMorrisons’ bakery staff helped deliver 100 loaves of bread to a good cause while preparing for their big store opening.The new supermarket in Handsworth, Birmingham opens on 31 January and, in preparation for the launch, the store’s bakery ovens had to be fired up to check they were in full working order. All the day’s baking was donated to the Handsworth Salvation Army.General manager Chris Hampton said: “I am delighted that our first bake is going to such a worthy cause. We always try to ensure that nothing is wasted and therefore donating the bread to where we know it is needed provides the perfect solution.”last_img read more

Pasty protection

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first_imgImpact on multiplesAmong the major multiples, some will be affected by the decision more than others. Waitrose said all its Cornish pasties are already prepared and baked in Cornwall, while a Morrisons spokesperson said it does sell some side-crimped Cornish-made pasties, and that all the pasties it sells made outside Cornwall, or made in Cornwall but crimped on top, will be renamed. Sainsbury’s said all its counter pasty products are from Cornish suppliers, “so [it] will be carrying the PGI logo shortly”. “In pre-pack, all lines are from Cornish suppliers apart from ’mini Cornish pasties’, and I believe the supplier is changing the packaging to reflect the recent PGI status,” said a spokesperson for the retailer. Tesco said all its Finest and standard Cornish pasties were made in Cornwall, while Asda said all its own-brand ’Chosen by You’ Cornish pasties were also made in Cornwall.Despite the Cornish pasty’s newly awarded status, the age-old argument over who, or rather which county, came up with the product is likely to rumble on. Devon-based Chunk of Cornwall controversially triumphed in the Cornish pasty category at the first British Pie Awards in 2009. It now simply calls its winning pasty a “steak pasty” and claims the pasty “from now on to be known as Cornish” originated in the Middle East, and came to Plymouth, Devon, in the mid-1500s, around 200 years before mining began in Cornwall. “This not a quality issue but purely commercial. Large multi-million-pound pasty companies have shoved this through as protectionism,” reads a statement on its website. And according to a recent article in The Telegraph, another pasty-maker in Devon said European bureaucrats could go to hell.On the flip-side, Andy Valentine, Ginsters’ head of brand marketing, said the firm had been celebrating the PGI decision, but that a surprising number of consumers seemed to think it wouldn’t be able to call them Cornish pasties any more, as they didn’t realise they were made in Cornwall. PGI status will at least set the record straight. If nothing else, gaining Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) has made Cornish pasties the talk of the town in the past couple of weeks. And it’s not just any old Cornish pasty that can be named so. For example, it has to be ’D’-shaped with a side crimp. The chunky filling, cooked in the pastry, must be made with uncooked minced or roughly cut chunks of beef (not less than 12.5%), swede, potato, onion with a light seasoning. Most importantly, it has to have been made in Cornwall.For many Cornish pasty retailers in the rest of the UK, this won’t cause huge concern, as they can still be baked-off outside Cornwall. However, every manufacturer of ’Cornish pasties’ will be affected, whether it be the need to change the name and/or packaging or their product; and, if a genuine Cornish pasty, it will now be required to feature the PGI stamp on-pack.A number of craft bakers outside Cornwall already have more generic names for their Cornish-style pasties, such as ’traditional pasty’ and, in Greenhalgh’s case, a Lancashire pasty. Meanwhile Cornish firm Pengenna Pasties, which makes top-crimped pasties, said it has always marketed them as ’traditional’ pasties rather than Cornish, so the PGI announcement won’t affect them.However, the largest bakery retailer in the country, Greggs, currently sells over 10 million not-Cornish-made Cornish pasties a year, so the decision by the European Commission must be something of a headache. A spokesperson for Greggs said it had applied to Defra under the requirements of Article 13.3 of Council Regulation (EC) 510/06 for a transition period to allow the business to comply with the PGI requirements. A spokesperson for the Cornish Pasty Association told British Baker there will be a transition period, likely to be between one and five years, for all manufacturers, retailers and supermarkets to ensure they are complying with the legislation, due to be set in the coming weeks. One name Greggs is considering is ’the pasty formerly known as Cornish’, but no decision has been made yet. Lancashire craft bakery Waterfields has also confirmed it will be changing the name of its Cornish pasty, but did not say what it will be called.last_img read more

Muntons awarded for innovation

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first_imgMuntons Ingredients has been awarded the Bakery Innovation Award of 2011 at the recent Food Ingredients Europe (FiE) show.The firm received the accolade for its ingredient Maltichoc – designed to be used a partial cocoa powder and chocolate replacer in baked goods – at the awards ceremony in Paris on 29 November.  To enter the competition, the firm had to submit details of its innovative bakery ingredient and answer a set of questions such as: ‘What was the inspiration behind this product?’. Several chocolate brownies, created by of senior product development technologist Andrew Fuller, some made with Maltichoc and some without, were sent to the judges to demonstrate the ingredient and its benefits.It claims to help retain moisture, improve texture and increase shelf-life as well as offer a significant raw material cost reduction.last_img read more

New website to find COVID-19 testing locations in Indiana

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first_img By Network Indiana – May 5, 2020 0 1269 New website to find COVID-19 testing locations in Indiana Google+ Facebook Twitter Previous articleRisk for gambling disorder increased by COVID-19-related stressNext articleSt. Vincent de Paul and Goodwill work together to provide food in St. Joseph County Network Indiana CoronavirusIndianaLocalNews (“Macbook” by pittaya, CC 2.0) There is a new website you can use to find coronavirus testing locations across Indiana.The website is a living document containing location, hours, and the testing criteria for each site. It will be updated as locations open, close, or change requirements. You can find the website here: https://lhi.care/covidtesting“It includes the Indiana State Department of Health drive-thru clinics, hospitals, local health departments, and other community-based testing. It shows both mobile and fixed testing sites,” says Department of Health Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Lindsay Weaver.Weaver says expanding testing is going to be critical to safely reopen Indiana.This testing is available for free to symptomatic individuals or those who are in close contact with someone who has a positive case. The state expects to test 100,000 Hoosiers each month.If you are having trouble accessing the website in any way, the helpline is 888-634-1116. Twitter Facebook WhatsApp WhatsApp Google+ Pinterest Pinterestlast_img read more