Inter Link claims number one own-label cake slot

first_imgCake supplier Inter Link Foods claimed it is now the UK’s number one own-label cake company and said it has set its sights on Europe, as it posted a 51.8% hike in half year turnover to £67.2million this week.Chief executive Paul Griffiths also revealed to British Baker that the company’s next move, in 2007, will be into traditional British puddings: Christmas, treacle and similar, which will provide more foodservice opportunities alongside its sales to the multiples.On the cakes front the supplier is looking at acquisition opportunities in Hungary, the Czech Republic and Poland following the successful acquisition of Polish cake company CMJ in Decem-ber 2004, said chief executive Paul Griffiths. It is seeking these acquisitions to boost its cake sales, both in the UK, where it eventually wants to be number one cake company overall, and in mainland Europe, he told British Baker. “When we acquired CMJ last year it had £5m turnover, from sales into mainland Europe. Under our ownership that has gone up to £12m this year. Repeating that model, can only be good news.”With 400 million people living in mainland Europe, Inter Link could “hardly ignore the opportunity”, he said. But he emphasised that the UK is still its number one priority. Inter Link believes it has overtaken rival RHM on the size of its own-label cakes business in the UK. “We supply all the major multiples with a wide product range,” said Mr Griffiths. “Given our scale, we believe we are now the UK’s number one supplier for own-brand cakes.”Inter Link will continue to grow in the UK, both organically and by making additional acquisitions. It is talking to a number of interested parties, Mr Griffiths said. Inter Link has signed a lease on a second 30,000sq ft factory in Trafford Park in Manchester as it develops Soreen, which it claims is the country’s fourth biggest cake brand. It will build a similar sized plant alongside that to manufacture the puddings, due for launch in Christmas 2007, Mr Griffiths told British Baker.last_img read more


first_imgIt’s not a good start to the New Year if you are one of the 400 people who face the uncertainty of losing your job at the Harvestime (2005) plant bakery, Walsall, as the saga lurches from one crisis to the next. By contrast this week, it is time to congratulate Patrick Bird, Mike Holling and everyone at Birds of Derby on opening their 50th shop. Birds concentrates solely on retailing quality goods. A member of the British Confectioners Association, the company is renowned for its breads, takeaway, and cakes, especially cream cakes. It also knows about marketing, window displays, and chocolate products, and places a real emphasis on ‘fresh’. It is marvellous to hear of an independent family-owned craft bakery doing so well in traditional and new formats. Many congratulations to all the staff!Industry-wise, it is interesting to read what several key players think 2006 will bring. From the insights of one of Britain’s wisest plant bakers, David Roberts, to ingredients manufacturer Ronnie Leggett of Macphie, and others; their future predictions make interesting reading.I agree with Ronnie Leggett, that craft bakers have the talent and opportunity to create a real point of difference, and the craft associations must fight really hard for their members on the high street. Local authorities MUST be tackled hard about ridiculous parking restrictions for customers and for deliveries. At the moment, it amounts to blatant discrimination against small shops.One of the most futuristic comments comes from Tony Reed of Tesco. It is tucked away at the end of his paragraph, where he says: “Everybody… will have to think about whether their supply chains are as slick as they ought to be. With haulage and energy getting more expensive, you really have to look again at your operating model.” He has up to four large trucks delivering bread to each of his stores daily, from different suppliers, none full. Consolidating those deliveries is a challenge he will ask them to consider next.Tony has already persuaded all his plant bread suppliers to begin a change-over to Tesco special delivery trays, which go from vehicle to shopfloor display. I suspect discussions on consolidated deliveries will start moving up the Federation of Baker’s agenda jolly soon.last_img read more


first_imgValera (West Thurrock, Essex) has added an extra-large basket model to its range of under-counter dishwashers. The CF50, which accommodates a maximum plate size of 340mm diameter, can also be used as a high-volume glass washer.It features a fully adjustable wash cycle of one to three minutes and is capable of washing up to 540 plates per hour. The bodywork is constructed in brushed stainless steel. It is insulated for lower noise levels and greater energy saving, says Valera.last_img

Tesco’s Tony Reed climbs from bakery

first_imgTesco’s high-profile bakery director Tony Reed has been promoted to operations director for 240 northern superstores, with a successor yet to be named.Mr Reed, who has been bakery director since August 2001, starts his new job on March 13. He will cover stores between 20,000sq ft and 60,000 sq ft in size from Suffolk to Scotland and Northern Ireland. He will also manage a Scottish office. Mr Reed will be best remembered for pushing through implementation of standard-sized bread baskets during his four-and-a-half year tenure. He told British Baker his other achievements include building strong relationships with suppliers – such as Inter Link, Northern Foods, Maple Leaf, Fine Lady and Greek bakery Arnouti. And he is still “trying very hard with Harvestime”.He said he is also proud of a link between Tesco and American doughnut giant Krispy Kreme, which now supplies 30 stores.As he prepared to depart Mr Reed praised plant bakery innovations such as Hovis Invisible Crust. But he urged members of the Federation of Bakers (FoB) to “work together more”. The FoB must come up with a “five-a-day” style campaign to promote bread, achieving the reverse of what Jamie Oliver did for Turkey Twizzlers, he said. A working group looking at collaborative deliveries would also be welcome.“Bread will be the first aisle I look at in all my new stores,” said Mr Reed. “I have made a lot of friends over the years, many based in the north, and I hope to keep in touch as I travel around.”Few bakers, apart from Warburtons, were making money four years ago, and the industry is financially more stable now, he added.last_img read more

Caffeine rush

first_imgAcoffee shop where you can buy all the fixtures and fittings? Welcome to BHS’s Coffee Lounge concept, on trial at six stores across the UK.Retail director Tony Brown says BHS is looking at ways to put discreet price tags on the furniture – brown leather chairs, fluffy light fittings, antique-style mirrors. These are all available for sale in the relevant departments of the department stores.The price tags idea is one of many tweaks that the retailer plans to make as it perfects the Coffee Lounge brand, which went on trial earlier this year and which Brown reports chairman Philip Green has “fallen in love with”.BHS created the new concept with its nine huge home interior furnishings stores in mind, looking to operators such as Costa Coffee, Caffè Nero and Starbucks for inspiration. But it soon realised that the format could also be introduced in its standard department stores.It now plans to open coffee shops in 50 of its 185 stores over the next year, replacing its existing grab-and-go self-service coffee counters, where customers help themselves to coffee from a machine. The new concept will do everything a high street coffee shop does, only better, according to Brown.The focus of the Coffee Lounge range is on premium quality, freshness and style. Trained Staff serve the Douwe Egberts premium coffee along with a dose of friendly banter.A range of thaw-and-serve cakes and pastries is sold from the counter. There are also what Brown calls “awesome sandwiches” on offer. These are made up on site, with a variety of speciality breads and fillings supplied by the Warwickshire-based Sandwich Factory. Prices start at £2.49.Brown says: “We want to come away from the skillet for sandwiches (triangular wedges) and offer customers something made in-store.”That said, there is a variety of pre-packed sandwich wedges in the chiller cabinet, alongside premium smoothies and cold drinks; this is not the place to pick up a can of Coke or, indeed, a lower-margin confectionery product.Opening hours for the Coffee Lounges compete with the high street coffee brands. The flagship Oxford Street BHS Coffee Lounge in London opens before the store, at 7.30am, using a side entrance, and stays open right through to when the store closes at 9pm,That BHS, once considered the poor cousin to Marks & Spencer, has committed to building its own coffee brand may seem a slight departure from its core clothing business. But Brown explains the move is a natural evolution. He says the retailer has all the expertise it needs to launch its own coffee chain, building on experience from its in-store restaurants and grab-and-go coffee areas. Its total foodservice operation, under the leadership of Roger Bolton, is already worth £80m a year.There was never any question of inviting an outside expert, such as Starbucks, into BHS to operate these coffee concessions. “Why should we hand over our profit?” asks Brown.The new format complements BHS’s in-store restaurants and carries some of the same range, Brown says. The restaurants, which mainly sell full meals, tend to become ghost towns after the lunchtime rush. “Customers don’t tend to come into our traditional restaurants in the afternoon,” Brown explains.muted ColoursA BHS in-house design team put together a colour mix of muted limes and chocolates for the lounge, along with lots of comfy leather. No outside agencies were used. Installation is carried out by regular BHS shopfitter Michelangelo. Brown says this keeps costs down. A Coffee Lounge can easily be “dropped” into a store, he says. Overheads are low, and a Lounge is expected to cover its investment costs in one to two years.This gives BHS flexibility as it experiments with the concept. The idea is still in its infancy, Brown says, and lots of tweaks are being made, tweaks that he says Philip Green is taking a personal interest in. One question being looked at is range. There is no standard confectionery, such as chocolate bars, on offer in the pilot lounges at the moment.With poor margins on confectionery, muffins and cakes are far more lucrative snacks. But Green has a plan to introduce sweet shop lines in a neighbouring part of the store, an express area complementing the seating area and making sure customers can get everything they want at BHS.Another undecided area is bake-off. BHS does not currently bake off in its coffee shops. Brown recognises the advantages of the smell of fresh baking wafting into the store from the lounge, and that customers will appreciate a warm range.But the drawback is that ovens will take up vital space. The retailer will experiment with bake-off in its Livingston store, which has the space for ovens and is due to launch a Coffee Lounge in this month.BHS also plans to introduce a loyalty card scheme for the Lounge, similar to one operated by Caffè Nero. Customers collect stamps as they buy five coffees, getting the sixth free, encouraging repeat trade and building a loyal customer base.As these areas are addressed, it is clear the Coffee Lounge remains a work in progress. But the signs are that it is a winning solution, encouraging people to spend more time and money in BHS. The company’s early research suggests that 35% of customers stop for refreshments in shops with pilot Coffee Lounges, compared with only 5% in standard stores. n—-=== BHS history ===British Home Stores opened its doors for the first time in Brixton in 1928. It became a public company in 1931.In 1986 it merged with Habitat/Mothercare to form Storehouse. BHS replaced British Home Stores as the registered company name, reinforced by a new company logo and corporate image.In May 2000, Monaco-based retail billionaire Philip Green bought BHS from the Storehouse Group for £220m. BHS Ltd is now a private retailer.Last month BHS announced a 60% fall in annual profits, a setback owner Philip Green said was “disappointing”.Pre-tax profits fell to £42.2m in the year to the end of April, from £106.7m in 2004-5. This was blamed on poor performance on women’s wear, and Green said the company had got its merchandise wrong in many areas, notably in the crucial women’s wear market. He said he had been investing “in the future growth” of the BHS brand, having spent £13m on 10 new stores.last_img read more

An eye towards Easter

first_imgYou don’t have to wait until September’s National Cupcake Week to capitalise on the cupcake craze, which shows no signs of slowing. In fact, cupcakes saw sales volume growth of 13.7% and average prices per pack increasing by 7.2% (TNS Superpanel, 52 w/e 4 October 2009). “There is still potential in the market for those looking for great trading profits,” says Lisa Boswell, marketing manager at CSM. So why not try some decorated cupcakes this Easter?Ingredient suppliers are coming up with a number of ways to cut costs and simplify the process this season. Karen Scott, communi-cations manager at Macphie, says: “We recommend that bakers look more closely at the ’cost in use’, because it is not just about the cost of the bag mix, it is about how far the mix goes and what additional ingredients may be needed.”Meanwhile, British Bakels is offering a package that means bakers can achieve an 80% margin on hot cross bun sales. If they use Baktem Blue, along with Bakels’ ready-to-use Crossing Mix, they will receive the ready-to-use Bun Glaze free of charge. This bundle deal is the equivalent to a 30% discount across the board. “Our package gives bakers the opportunity to produce great-tasting hot cross buns and increase their profit margins, thanks to the free bun glaze,” says Pauline Ferrol, national sales controller at Bakels.last_img read more

Daily Bread takes action on range

first_imgDaily Bread has revamped its offer, introducing new ranges, new packaging and display materials, as well as setting up a seven-day-a-week national delivery service and launching its new website.New for 2010 are a range of Hot Options, which include a breakfast muffin with free- range egg, crispy bacon, cheese and ketchup. New toasties include ham & cheddar, and mature cheddar & tomato, while a new panini pepperoni with roasted peppers topped with cheese and mayo has also been developed.Other recent menu developments include Seasonal Specials alongside the firm’s Premium and Classics sandwich ranges, and a new line of freshly prepared salads such as roasted salmon & couscous, chicken Caesar salad, pesto pasta salad and feta salad. A new gluten-free bread is also on offer initially as the carrier for its egg and chive sandwich.Daily Bread is a subsidiary of Hain Celestial, and a holder of Her Majesty The Queen’s Royal read more

Bakers could be hit by ’defrosted’ labelling laws

first_imgBakery retailers selling products that have previously been frozen could be forced to label them as ’defrosted’ under proposed EC legislation.UK retailers and food manufacturers are fighting to overturn the recently added amendment to draft legislation on the Provision of Food Information to Consumers. This proposes to make it mandatory for food products that were previously frozen, but are sold fresh, to be accompanied by the term ’defrosted’ next to the product name.It is not yet clear whether the legislation would apply to both packaged and unpackaged products, but par-baked breads, thaw-and-serve cakes and frozen sand-wich ingredients could all fall foul of the rule, if brought into force.”[We are] concerned that, if this goes ahead, it will simply add to the complications and costs of labelling for sandwich-makers and producers of chilled foods generally,” said Jim Winship, director of the British Sandwich Association. “Bakers using frozen part-baked products, for example, could be affected. We are assessing the implications with our members and will be encouraging the UK Government to strongly resist this proposal.”A spokesman for the British Retail Consortium added: “We believe the current legal position is perfectly adequate and there is no need for a change in the law. There are good reasons why food is frozen and defrosted. It manages demand, reduces waste and offers consumers more choice. You could only make a case for changing the law if there was a belief that the customers were being misled and there is no evidence of this. It’s certainly something we’re opposed to.”last_img read more

Give yourself a challenge at Bakers’ Fair

first_imgDon’t forget to get your entries in by 6 April for the National Association of Master Bakers’ Competitions to be held at Bakers’ Fair Spring, with trophies presented by celebrity Linda Lusardi.Taking place at Newbury Racecourse on Sunday 10 April, the new event for 2011 will play host to competitions available to all bakers consisting of seven classes for bakers and three classes held jointly with the National Federation of Meat and Food Traders.The classes, sponsored by Rank Hovis, include: a celebration cake inspired by the Royal Wedding; hot cross buns; crusty brown rolls; an 800g farmhouse loaf; and cold-eat meat pasties (joint category).For more information or to download an entry form visit read more

Goshen College announces COVID fueled changes ahead of fall semester

first_img Google+ WhatsApp Facebook Goshen College has released and detailed their plans for getting students back on campus in the fall. That includes changes to the school calendar, residential options, classrooms, and even dinning.They will start their school year two weeks early so students can end their semester by Thanksgiving. Athletics wise its unknown what decision will be made. The NAIA is expected to make a decision on future sports by July 1st.The Elkhart Truth lays out the full detailed plans here Goshen College announces COVID fueled changes ahead of fall semester Facebook Pinterest WhatsApp CoronavirusIndianaLocalNews Twitter By Jon Zimney – June 1, 2020 0 460 Google+ Pinterest Twitter Previous articlePolice converge on University Park Mall, stop person armed with an axNext articleLaGrange County 4H Fair will take place as planned 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.last_img read more