At a glance

first_imgHistory: First opened in 1936 by Chris’ father, before Chris joined in 1968. Chris’ son Douglas is also a baker, working at The Cavan Bakery in Hampton, MiddlesexNumber of shops: Three in Kent – Strood, Gillingham and SnodlandNumber of employees: 17, including six in production and two van driversRetail/wholesale split: 60/40. Wholesale customers include restaurants, hotels, pubs and shops. Savoury platters and sandwiches also supplied to local businessesProduct rangeBreads: Full range of white and wholemeal loaves, including bloomers, cobs, tin and farmhouse, as well as crusty rolls (best-seller) and bapsConfectionery: doughnuts (best-seller), puff pastries, sponges, Eccles cakes, chocolate cake, Bakewell tarts and sticky buns. Celebration cakes are also an important part of the businessSavouries: sausage rolls (best-seller), meat pies, Cornish pastieslast_img read more

Consultant points to export gaps

first_imgBakery firms specialising in private-label are in a strong position to build export sales as retail chains in the US and mainland Europe look to develop more sophisticated own-brand ranges. That’s the view of Simon Waring, MD of the UK branch of export consultancy The Green Seed Group, which has been founded from the now-defunct Food From Britain.“Most markets are well behind the UK in terms of private-label, so the capabilities of bakeries that are highly skilled in this area are in demand internationally,” he told British Baker. “Private-label is growing rapidly in the US, and in Germany we are seeing greater segmentation with more premium own-brand products. International retailers want to replicate the sophistication of the UK and are seeking private-label specialists.”The Green Seed Group comprises nine offices in Europe, one in the US and one in Australia, which cover markets in 19 different countries. As well as helping British food and drink companies export, the group will also help companies in other countries export to the UK.last_img read more

Time-saving devices

first_imgKönigBrand new at the Iba show in Düsseldorf was a working prototype of the new industrial König automatic divider-rounder.Developed from the Industrie Rex III, the new model known as the Industrie Rex Hyper, came about after extensive customer surveys throughout Europe. Stewart Morris, director of UK supplier EPP told British Baker: “We studied all the ideas from the surveys and came up with key improvements. Customers wanted more and more time-saving, increased productivity and they wanted machines that were easy to clean to the very highest hygiene levels. “As a result the new divider-rounder can be dis-assembled (it’s normally fixed) for full cleaning in 15 minutes. It can then be jet-washed. This makes it a revolutionary step forward in roll plant design.” Central components of the machine have been combined to produce changeable sub-systems, which can be easily cleaned and serviced at the end of a shift, saving downtime. On the dough side, pressure is simple to adjust for different products and can be recalled via the linkage programme.König also unveiled an all-purpose final prover. Based on a proven racking and storing system, it allows the individual proving plates to be stored for a specified time, giving maximum flexibility with different products. The system meets the latest hygiene requirements and offers a large proving area but only takes up a small amount of space.VMIAlso at Iba, VMI showcased a new spiral and a new planetary mixer. Mickaël Roussière of VMI told British Baker: “We assembled our most experienced people and sat down at the drawing board.”The new spiral mixer is designed to save time and money. It has built-in flexibility for mixing more dough when required and satisfies the most stringent hygiene requirements, because the materials used are stainless steel and plastic. This means it can be easily washed down. Roussière comments: “Bakeries are becoming more like food factories. Before, they were not designed to be washed down, but now they are and the customer is driving it.”Another aspect of the VMI spiral mixer, which Roussière says is unique, is that you can adjust the position of the spiral and centre post in the retaining bowl, because although the machine is a single spiral mixer it has a place for another spiral, making it a twin.The VMI new spiral mixer, available in the UK through EPP, can also be installed as part of an in-line or rotating carousel automatic mixing system. Its design also means it is very easy to see inside the bowl and it has easy access with centralised lubrication.VMI also launched a compact bridge-type planetary mixer, also described as “very easy to clean and with a new patented gearbox”. Its two main advantages are its flat roof for simple cleaning, while the gearbox is slim and compact. Roussière says: “The planetary mixer offers the best parameters for mixing and the baker can adjust the ratio of speed between tools and the double rotation. This makes the mixer more efficient, because the ratio can be adjusted to suit diffe-rent products.”last_img read more

Storm troopers

first_imgFor once, the national press have been the baker’s best friend. This week began with: “Snow crisis: it’s panic in the shops” (Daily Express); “Panic buying hits supermarkets” (Daily Mail) and, our favourite, “Grit hits the fan” (predictably, The Sun). With images of barren shelving offering a helpful visual cue to spark anxious consumers into skidding to the shops, sales of bread went through the roof. If bakers gritted their teeth in anticipation of the snow storms, it didn’t come from falling flat on their face on the high street. Difficulties in getting supplies through appeared largely localised and sales of bread in supermarkets shot up 10-15%. “Inevitably there have been a few problems with distribution, with some customers in the Cotswolds difficult to reach, but we are getting through to virtually everyone,” said Joe Street, MD of Fine Lady Bakeries, a major supplier to Tesco. “The bigger issue has been people ’panic-buying’. It’s always a big week when the kids go back to school, but we’ve seen orders increase significantly as people stock up because of the snow.”Indeed, the reported panic-buying was overstated and short-lived, but the retailers reported a spike in bread sales. “We haven’t seen panic-buying, but people are picking up an extra loaf or two when they shop,” said a spokesman for Sainsbury’s. “Conditions are challenging, but we have a lot of experience in overcoming logistical issues. Deliveries are getting through and there have been no store closures.”The impacts on trading were mainly felt in staffing bakeries, distributing amid a lottery of gritted and iced roads, getting staff in to open shops and customers failing to make it into work. “You expect to see a couple of weeks of snow every year we saw two last February,” commented Ken McMeikan, CEO of Greggs. “But the severity of the snow this year and the length of time it is set to last is a challenge for all businesses. For some it could be the final straw.”Higher bread salesNevertheless, the likes of Martins Bakery, which has 28 bakery sandwich shops around Manchester and which struggled to get deliveries through to its shops, found positives in higher bread sales. “It has been very difficult all week…getting deliveries and our products to the customers,” said financial director Kirsty Harvey. “We have managed but with great difficulty.” While roads around the city centre cleared, Manchester City Council faced difficulties when it came to gritting. As many of Martins’ shops are located in the surrounding suburbs or on side streets, customers found it difficult to reach them. Despite this, bread sales were up. “We have been trading very well in bread and rolls as people have come out for bread,” she explained. “So we’ve had to make more to meet demand.”Aberdeenshire was one of the worst-hit areas in the UK. Past SAMB president John Smith, with one shop in Pitsligo, another in Fraserburgh, plus wholesale to local shops and hotels, witnessed nearly 5ft of snow. “We are on the main street in New Pitsligo and lorries stop for savouries while passing through, but we anticipated that big bread lorries would not get through to the supermarkets on time, so we are making and selling up to an extra 100 large loaves a day. Some of my staff cannot get in. When that happens, I manage on two to three hours’ sleep a night, but have kept up production and deliveries.”David Gunn, of Gunns Bakery in Bedfordshire, said that the weather hadn’t caused much of a problem, even though the company is located not far from the snow-hit A1. While many local schools were closed, it meant that children and their parents came in later to buy treats. “It has been a slightly different sort of trade,” he said.Battling onWhile Gloucestershire had “a massive dump” of snow, said Tom Herbert, director at Hobbs House Bakery, they found ways to battle on and get bread to customers. “We’ve been able to meet most of our delivery obligations, but Wednesday and Thursday last week were the worst. We dented two vans and we’ve had a lot of orders cancelled. The people who have been the busiest have been the village shops; we’ve been able to get bread to them and they’ve been so amazingly grateful,” he said. And as if to underline the baker’s blessing of a nation prodded towards hysteria, he added: “We managed to shift most of our bread by encouraging a bit of panic-buying, saying, ’You don’t want to be caught trapped without bread’. It worked a treat! It was little bit naughty, but we knew they were getting bread they would enjoy…”last_img read more

Written harassment

first_imgVerbal bullying can be caught by harassment laws. But suppose employees do it in writing? What is the Court of Appeal’s view on this type of behaviour?Some years ago, the House of Lords confirmed that the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 (PHA) could be used by employees against their employers. As this particular law was originally designed to combat stalkers not to provide further means of redress for disgruntled members of staff this was bad news. At that time, their Lordships ruled that:l the PHA covers any form of verbal harassment (no breach of discrimination law is necessary);l an employee need only show they have suffered two incidents of “anxiety or distress” caused by their employer;l there is no statutory defence available to a PHA claim;l employees have six years to bring a claim against you.Managers and staff should be instructed not to make oppressive and unacceptable comments in written communications, letters, email and text messages. Make it clear in your equal opportunities and dignity at work policy that any breaches of this rule will result in disciplinary action.l For a sample of our ’Equal Opportunities and Dignity at Work Policy’, call 01920 468061last_img read more

Real Bread champion nominated for award

first_imgA Scottish baker has been nominated for a BBC Food and Farming Award for his commitment to producing real bread.Former BBC producer Andrew Whitley, who runs Bread Matters bakery in Peeblesshire, has been put forward as one of three finalists for the Derek Cooper Award. It recognises individuals or organisations doing the most to bring about real change in our relationship with food.Whitley set up the Real Bread Campaign, which aims to champion handmade bread, using only the necessary ingredients. French chef and baker Richard Bertinet is one of several ambassadors for the campaign and won the BBC Food Champion of the Year Award in 2010.Whitley said: “It’s great when you think about the bread sector that we’re a very small community, but have been featured two years in a row so prominently in these awards. We are taking a new approach to bread and now is the time to put the old ways to bed.“The Real Bread Campaign grew from the need to know how bread is made. We should be encouraging people to challenge bakers and come clean about what is going into their bread – if it includes any enzymes or additives and how it is being made.”Whitley also runs training and bakery classes at his West Linton-based bakery, including a course on Baking for the Community, which looks at the whole picture from making bread, turning it into a successful business and how a bakery can support the whole community. “Bakers are the glue of the community; it’s a useful job to aspire to and is helping in the revival of local economies,” added Whitley. “It also provides an interaction of meeting around bread, which is important to the physical and mental good health of communities.“We should be encouraging young people and teaching them the craft by hand. It gives them that sense of skill and self-worth, but we cannot do that without positioning our bakeries as something truly admirable.”Whitley is up against food charity FareShare, which aims to address issues with hunger and food waste, alongside The Food for Life Partnership, a network of schools and communities across England committed to transforming food culture.Winners will be announced at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham on 23 November.last_img read more

INDOT says 83 crashes have already happened this season in construction zones

first_img By Tommie Lee – April 21, 2020 0 320 INDOT says the 2020 construction season has barely begun, and there have already been 83 work zone crashes so far.They ask Hoosiers on the roads to be mindful when they see the orange signs, and slow down.INDOT reports 1,100 projects are underway around the state.There were 23 fatalities last year in crashes at INDOT work zones. IndianaLocalNewsSouth Bend Market WhatsApp WhatsApp Google+ Pinterest Facebook Google+ Twitter Pinterest Twitter Facebook INDOT says 83 crashes have already happened this season in construction zones Previous article431 new COVID-19 cases reported in IndianaNext articleIndiana Beach hopes to find a way to reopen this year Tommie Leelast_img read more

How to stay civil when others don’t share your political views

first_img Previous articleState Democratic chairman John Zody to step down in MarchNext articleHealth Department official concerned about COVID-19 spread after Notre Dame fans rush football field 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. How to stay civil when others don’t share your political views Twitter Twitter WhatsApp By Jon Zimney – November 8, 2020 4 509 Pinterest Facebook Google+ WhatsApp IndianaLocalNews Google+ Facebook Pinterest (95.3 MNC) You’ve probably witnessed or experienced some not-so-great conversations with people who have different views than you this year. A college professor at St. Mary’s College is trying to help others remain civil during those difficult and frustrating chats.Professor Megan Zwart at St. Mary’s College in South Bend has been teaching a class about civil discourse since 2016. In 2020, her students have been discussing some of the big topics.“Abortion. Gun rights. Immigration. Environmental policies,” Zwart said. “We’ve talked about ‘cancel culture’ which was an interesting one.”Once a week, her students get together for class, and go through a variety of stories, from “high-quality sources across the political field,” regarding some of the hot topics. Then they have an open dialogue about where they stand on those topics. Then, the conversation molds into listening exercises and teaching moments.“These things want to evolve into debates,” she said. “But for us, it’s really important to have a dialogue, not a debate.”“In a debate, somebody wins and somebody loses. But in a dialogue, everyone can learn something.”Zwirt says one of key things is to have an unbiased mindset heading into the discussion.“You have to have a good context in which everybody is up for it, everyone is willing to listen and learn,” she said. “If you try to persuade somebody, if that’s your aim, then you’re not in control of the outcome and you’re more likely to become frustrated. But if your intent is to understand, then you can ask curious questions to the other person that help you connect the dots. Why do they believe what they believe? How do their values and core beliefs give rise to their views on a specific issue?”She adds that we should live in a world where people have different views, but if you go into a conversation with the intent to try to understand the other view, then you’re going to come out of it thinking you got value out of that discussion.Another key factor is how you’re having this conversation. She advises that to try to do it in-person and not on social media.“It’s much more likely that people are there just to score points or to troll or to make their opponent look foolish.”You can read more about Professor Zwirt’s class, and their tips, at last_img read more

Press release: UK and France to strengthen ties in AI and data

first_img The UK is a digital dynamo, increasingly recognised across the world as a place where ingenuity and innovation can flourish. We are home to four in ten of Europe’s tech businesses worth more than $1 billion and London is the AI capital of Europe. France is also doing great work in this area, and these new partnerships show the strength and depth of our respective tech industries and are the first stage in us developing a closer working relationship. This will help us better serve our citizens and provide a boost for our digital economies. Alan Wilson, CEO of The Alan Turing Institute, said: Digital Secretary Matt Hancock will today visit Paris to announce a package of measures to strengthen ties between the UK and France’s digital industries.The aim is to boost both countries’ digital economies and forge closer links between cutting-edge companies from both nations.Mr Hancock will address a landmark bilateral conference on data and the digital economy alongside his French counterpart, Mounir Mahjoubi. He will confirm the UK’s world-leading centre for AI and data, The Alan Turing Institute, is signing an agreement with the French institute, DATAIA, to promote collaboration between the French and British sectors.It will see the two organisations pursue collaborative research in areas of shared interest – for example, in fairness and transparency in the design and implementation of algorithms.They will also work together to share expertise, paving the way for visiting researchers to spend time at each Institute and hosting joint workshops and funding calls.At the UK-France Digital Colloque – a summit of more than 350 businesses, researchers and officials from both countries – Mr Hancock and Mr Majoubi will also sign an accord on digital government. This will commit to extending their cooperation in the digital sector – on innovation, artificial intelligence, data and digital administration.Mr Hancock will also confirm London-based Entrepreneur First, a beacon for the UK’s excellence in developing tech talent, is to continue its global expansion with a new Paris office. He will also bang the drum for British tech and promote the opportunities for business-to-business collaboration at a breakfast meeting with business leaders.Digital Secretary Matt Hancock said: New agreement will see countries’ leading research centres deepen collaboration National governments sign five-year accord to work together to improve digital services London start-up accelerator Entrepreneur First to open fifth international office in Paris Matt Clifford, EF co-founder and CEO, said:center_img EF exists to enable the world’s most ambitious people build extraordinary companies. It was founded in London, where we’ve already helped spark the development of high growth companies from scratch. As we continue our global expansion we’re looking forward to working with France’s future founders and strengthening the ties between business and investors in both countries. The fundamental goal behind all our research is to build a data and AI enriched world for the benefit of all. In order to do this, it is critical to forge international collaborations and share our knowledge, expertise and ideas with other research centres around the world. The Institute and DATAIA both share a vision for building research in data science and AI which crosses disciplinary boundaries and recognises the societal implications of data and algorithms. It is a pleasure to kickstart this engagement and we look forward to working with them to advance UK and French excellence in this area. Notes to editorsDigital ColloqueThe UK and France are world leaders in the digitisation of public services and are developing a data ecosystem which supports policy makers, corporates and startups using data from across the spectrum of closed, shared and open data.The Digital Colloque will see leading policymakers and industry experts discuss the technologies revolutionizing the world.It follows the commitment made by the President Emmanuel Macron and Prime Minister Theresa May during the France-UK Summit in January 2018 to boost cooperation in these fields.This Colloque builds on the success of the inaugural UK France Data Summit 2017 in London and the UK-France Summit in Sandhurst in January 2018, where both countries agreed to foster bilateral discussions on digital issues.It comes ahead of the French presidency of the G7 in 2019 and British presidency in 2021 to promote their shared vision on Global challenges.More than 350 businesses, researchers and officials from both the UK and France are due to attend the Colloque.Entrepreneur FirstEntrepreneur First (EF) was founded in London in 2011 by Matt Clifford and Alice Bentinck to connect the world’s most ambitious technologists to the best investors globally. EF’s bespoke programme, the first of its kind in the world, helps outstanding individuals to find co-founders and investment, and build high growth technology companies from scratch.Entrepreneur First, started in London in 2011, is a beacon for the UK’s excellence in developing tech talent, and already has sites in Singapore, Berlin and Hong Kong.Its alumni include Magic Pony Technology, led by Rob Bishop and Zehan Wang, which was acquired by Twitter for £150m. Magic Pony’s founders, Rob Bishop and Zehan Wang, studied together at Imperial College, and met at Entrepreneur First.To date EF – which opened its Singapore office in 2016 and this year opened in Berlin and Hong Kong – has helped over 1,000 individuals build over 150 companies with a total valuation of over $1 billion. EF’s companies have been funded by some of the world’s leaving venture investors in Europe and Silicon Valley.And EF itself has also raised from some of the world’s best investors,including Reid Hoffman (founder of LinkedIn), Demis Hassabis (founder of DeepMind), Greylock Partners, Mosaic Ventures, Founders Fund, Lakestar and more.last_img read more

News story: UK Hydrographic Office 2017-2018 Annual Report released

first_imgThe UK Hydrographic Office has released its Annual Report and Accounts for 2017 to 2018.In addition to its performance report, accountability report and financial statements, the document contains information about the organisation’s transformation to become a marine geospatial information agency and a number of case studies that showcase its work.You can download and view the document using the links below: UK Hydrographic Office Annual Report and Accounts for 2017 to 2018 (PDF) UK Hydrographic Office Annual Report and Accounts for 2017 to 2018 (interactive version)center_img The UKHO is an executive agency and operates as a trading fund within the Ministry of Defence. This paper was laid before Parliament in response to a legislative requirement or as a Return to an Address and was ordered to be printed by the House of Commons.last_img read more