Pecan Deluxe CANDY EUROPE (Leeds, Yorkshire) has invested in a new freezing tunnel.The new equipment has enabled the company to manufacture chocolate truffles and cookie dough pieces, which were previously made in the US and imported.Allan Dew, MD of the UK arm of Pecan Deluxe, says: “Investment in equipment and streamlining has enabled us to make much higher volumes and generate new products.We are equipped to cope with huge volumes of business while retaining the artisan element.”The company now plans to launch the truffles in Japan.
For producing organic rustic bread, Fermex International (Worcester, Worcestershire) offers Crème de Levain, a patented live, liquid sourdough, with standardised, high levels of acidifying bacteria and aromatic yeasts in packs of five litres and 1,000-litre tanks.
As costs continue to rise, bakers are increasingly keen to find ways of cutting utilities bills.Scottish companies Macleans Highland Bakery and Walkers Shortbread are examples of this trend. They have been working with a consultancy firm to see if they could reduce their energy bills and improve their environmental impact.reducing utility usageForres-based business Macleans has a main bakery and four shops, as well as a wholesale division. “In common with many bakeries, we were keen to reduce our utility usage and make cost savings,” says managing director Lewis Maclean. “We were also eager to find ways of reducing our consumption and, consequently, cut our carbon footprint.”With a variety of upward pressures on business costs, Aberlour-based Walkers was also keen to make savings and reduce its carbon emissions from its factories and shops in the north-east of Scotland. “We are very heavy users of utilities in our production processes,” says Nicky Walker, general manager of Walkers. “So any savings we can make go straight to the bottom line. We are also keen to reduce our carbon footprint and the consultants have suggested a number of ways in which we can do this.”Data LoggersFor Macleans, the plan is to install data loggers, which allows gas, electricity and water consumption to be remotely monitored. Analysts at Business Cost Consultants will analyse the data and send specialists on-site to identify ways of reducing energy and water consumption.Business Cost Consultants’ managing director Donald Maclean says: “Macleans is quite a large user of electricity, water and gas in its production processes so utilities are quite significant business costs. Overall, we expect to be able to reduce utility costs by between 10% and 20% and we are working with the bakery to make sure resources are being used efficiently and in an environmentally sound manner.”Smart data loggers are also to be installed at Walkers, where the company is facing increasing cost pressures on ingredients, caused by bad weather, dietary changes in Eastern countries and the fact that countries are diverting significant amounts of raw materials towards biofuels.”We are confident of making substantial savings per annum,” says Business Cost’s Donald Maclean. “That includes reductions of over 20% on water and telecom costs.” The analyst will highlight potential savings for the firm and advise on how utility procurement could be improved.Remote monitoringBusiness Cost Consultants, which previously traded as Audits Unlimited, specialises in the remote monitoring of energy and water consumption and offers an independent utilities advice service.Based near Glasgow, the company manages several thousand clients’ sites, from Inverness in the north to the south of England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Bakkavör blames tough trading for performance
Icelandic giant Bakkavör said that the ’toughest trading conditions in decades’ had affected the group’s performance, as it revealed its results for the first months of the year last week.Chief executive Agust Gudmundsson said that fundamental changes in world supply had resulted in global commodity price increases, which were having a ’significant impact’ on the business. He said the firm’s results were also affected by extreme weather conditions in the UK, a major product recall in the first quarter and capacity transfer within part of its ready-meals operations.The Bakkavör Group has 55 factories and employs around 20,000 people in eight countries. It owns bakery businesses including New Primebake, Laurens Patisseries and Pure Patisserie in the UK.The company revealed operating profits of £86.9 million, a 4% rise, over the nine months, but they were down £30.1m, a 6% fall, in the third quarter. Cash generated from the firm’s operations stood at £110.2 m, down 11%.Gudmundsson said that despite of the difficult trading conditions, the Bakkavör group’s sales outperformed market growth and it continued to strengthen its market position, with five acquisitions over the nine months in the UK, the Czech Republic, France and China.
n Starbucks’ US chairman and former chief executive, Howard Schultz will immediately replace chief executive Jim Donald. Starbucks said the leadership shuffle is part of a series of initiatives to help improve its performance.n What has been described as Britain’s first Polish supermarket has opened in Sunderland. The Polskie Food Company in Holmeside stocks a wide range of Polish bakery items and breads.n A new website, [http://www.foodanddrinkforum.co.uk], has been launched by The Food & Drink Forum. The aim is to help keep the industry up to date with support, training and development opportunities.n Bakers should consider capitalising on the growing trend for online shopping. Retail specialist, Actinic, found in a survey that respondents reported a 27% rise in the number of customers buying online at Christmas, compared to the same period in 2006. They also reported an increase in internet revenues of 46%.n Northern Foods announced on Friday 11 January, that its acquisition of a soup plant from Baxters Food Group would improve its production footprint in the UK.n Police have been investigating inapropriate, religious graffiti at Pentland Bakery in Herts. Pentland owner Mr Munir said the graffiti referred to Islam in an offensive way.
BakeMark’s Cool cookie
BakeMark UK is introducing another licensed cookie to its range with Nestlé. The Quality Street Matchmakers Cool Mint Cookie has an American-style soft bake texture and will join the likes of Nestlé Toffee Crisp Cookies, Nestlé Rolo Cookies and Nestlé Milkybar Mini Cookies.Each case of the new cookies contains 32 free Quality Street Matchmakers Cookie bags, branded with the new Quality Street Matchmakers logo.[http://www.bakemark.co.uk]
Artisan Biscuits has launched a range of cheese biscuits under the name Grate Britain. The all-British range consists of Cheddar Biscuits, made with Wookey Hole Cave-Aged Cheddar; Stilton Biscuits, made with Long Clawson Blue Stilton; and Smoked Cheese Biscuits, made with Dorset Red. The cheese is freshly grated for every batch and English flour, cream and butter are also used. They are available from delicatessens and cheese shops.RRP: £2.25 per 100g boxwww.artisanbiscuits.co.uk
BSB sets out plans for AGM and dinner
The British Society of Baking (BSB) will host a four-course dinner, including a talk by well-known BBC sports journalist Garry Richardson, as part of its AGM.It will take place on Monday evening, 22 March, during the Baking Industry Exhibition (BIE), March 21-24 at the Birmingham NEC. The meal, at the Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel and Country Club in Birmingham, is open to members and non-members, offering a chance to relax with colleagues after the show.The dinner costs £60 for BSB members and £65 for non-members. Pre-dinner drinks are 6.30-7.30pm in the Woodlands Suite Bar, followed by a four-course dinner and entertainment. Bed and breakfast at the Forest of Arden Hotel costs £135 per room. Download a booking form at www.bsb.org.uk/news.htm or tel: Sharon Byrne on 01869 247098.Chairman Andy Pollard, who has led BSB for four years, will hand over to Keith Houliston.
Stephen Ort, previously a regular contributor to British Baker, died recently after a long illness.Involved in the practical side of the baking trade, he was a long-standing board member for the London Bulk Buying Association. He studied for a National Diploma of Baking at the National Bakery School, then the Borough Poly-technic, before gaining expe-rience in bakeries throughout the UK and Australia.He helped spearhead the enlargement of the family business, in Leighton Buzzard, the detail of which often featured in his articles in BB.Upon the closure of the business he tried various facets of the bakery trade before buying and running a hotel in the Lake District with his wife.
Cases of coronavirus popping up in St. Joseph County
Google+ Facebook WhatsApp Pinterest Facebook WhatsApp By Jon Zimney – March 25, 2020 1 338 CoronavirusIndianaLocalNews Twitter Cases of coronavirus popping up in St. Joseph County A laboratory technician prepares COVID-19 patient samples for semi-automatic testing at Northwell Health Labs, Wednesday, March 11, 2020, in Lake Success, N.Y. The US Food and Drug Administration has approved faster testing protocols as the viral outbreak continues to spread worldwide. (AP Photo/John Minchillo) The numbers will be updated at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, March 25. But as of early Wednesday morning, there are 18 cases of coronavirus in St. Joseph County. Health leaders say several of those who’ve tested positive have recovered.Statewide, there are 365 confirmed cases with 12 reported deaths. In Michigan, there are nearly 1,800 cases. At least 8 of them are in Berrien County.A member of the Walt Disney Elementary School community has tested positive. The person is believed to have been exposed back on March 10 and was at the school March 11-13. The patient has just mild symptoms and is at home in self-isolation.A City of South Bend employee who works in the County-City Building has tested positive for COVID-19. The worker has been directed to self-isolate at home. City leaders are taking appropriate steps to notify and quarantine others who may have been in contact with the individual.Top Indiana officials are warning that the state’s rapid jump in coronavirus illnesses is just the beginning and that obeying a new stay-at-home order is necessary.The order from Gov. Eric Holcomb takes effect Wednesday and comes the confirmed number of COVID-19 cases in Indiana grew to 365 on Tuesday, more than 12 times what state health officials reported a week earlier.State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box says the state is in “the very early parts of this outbreak.” Holcomb urged all residents to take seriously the stay-at-home order that runs at least through April 6.The Associated Press contributed to this report. Google+ Pinterest Twitter Previous articlePhishing emails believed to be targeting ’round-the-clock workersNext articleMishawaka Police still searching for 7-Eleven robbery suspect 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.