Jack Williamson, aged 92, died recently after a short illness, writes his daughter Pat Harwood. Jack was well-known, firstly in Thames Ditton where he bought his first bakery, originally called Taylors. Jack opened his business just after the war, when ingredients were in short supply – at a time when a tray of jam tarts on display would disappear in five minutes. The business grew to three shops, including one in Ewell and one in Hook. By this time, the coupon books had been thrown away and he was able to produce more exciting pastries, which he learned to make at the Westminster School for Bakers and Confectioners.In 1958, Jack and his wife Ruby bought a business in Streatham Hill, called Rosels. On his retirement, he lived in Storrington for two years, but then bought a small shop in Middleton-on-Sea.After his wife’s death, he lived at St Nicolas Court in sheltered accommodation, but still enjoyed baking cakes for the residents there.
Tom Chandley (stand C200) will have a rack oven on display, complete with its latest BakeMate system. The microprocessor control uses touchscreen controls to recall bake, steam and temperature settings. Chandley’s rack ovens feature a lift and rotate rack loading system, which eliminates the need for ramps. Also on the stand will be the Compacta, with a five deck, three trays per deck oven, including the new MK4MD touch panel display. And for smaller operations, including bake-off, a number of Convecta ‘tc’ovens will be on show, featuring reversible fans to provide consistent results and shorter baking times. One of the tcs will demonstrate a new automatic door opening system. A 10-tray Wieshu oven for supermarkets and machines from Sigma, including a 30 dough piece bun divider moulder and a 40-litre planetary mixer, complete the line-up.
Bakehouse’s (in Bagshot, Surrey) new Chocolate & Hazelnut Twist – a spiral of butter pastry, chocolate and hazelnuts – fulfils two consumer trends, convenience and indulgence, says the company.Made from butter pastry, it has a creamy chocolate-flavoured filling and topping of real milk chocolate and crunchy sugared hazelnut pieces twisted together. Supplied frozen, the Twists bake off in just 15 minutes, following the success of Bakehouse’s savoury Cheese Twist. The 90g Chocolate & Hazelnut Twists are packed on trays of 10 pieces (with four trays per case), which can be lifted straight from the case in the freezer. No finishing is required as the Twists are supplied ReadyGlazed.”Indulgence and convenience remain the two big mega-trends driving the consumer market for sweet pastries,” explains Kate Raison, Bakehouse marketing director. “Our new Twist combines two of the UK’s best-loved ingredients: chocolate and hazelnuts, and it’s easy-to-manage twist shape will make it very attractive to consumers.”
Canadian company Maple Leaf Foods said last week that its UK bakery acquisitions contributed to a 7% rise in sales in its bakery group in the fourth quarter of 2006.The UK bakery business, best known for the New York Bagel Co brand, saw excellent performance, it said, benefiting from strong bagel sales and the first month’s earnings from its French Croissant Company acquisition.Maple Leaf Foods said it plans to develop its fresh bakery business to increase its earnings and expects continued market growth in the UK. It also predicted recovery of its US frozen business, which has suffered due to factors including distribution and warehousing costs.Earnings across the bakery group were helped by price increases to offset flour and other cost increases, it said.Overall bakery group sales were $355m in the fourth quarter to 31 December, 2006, up from $309m in the same quarter in 2005. Total sales of $1.3bn were achieved in the full year of 2006.Operating earnings were $100.9m in 2006 and $23.3m in the fourth quarter of the year.Maple Leaf’s UK MD Peter Maycock told British Baker: “Maple Leaf’s UK sales in the fourth quarter were led by growth in its New York Bagels brand. The company is excited by its acquisitions of the French Croissant Co and Avance and expects to maintain growth.”
Irish miller Odlums has indicated that its flour prices will increase by over E90 (£61) a tonne.Odlums said it would aim to keep prices to a minimum, but added that the cost of raw mate- rials had surged.The company said that, with the global harvest season well under way, it is already clear that prices worldwide for the 2007 crop will be significantly higher than for the previous year.”Shoppers will be hit by these prices, as wheat crops will increase in price by at least 30%”, it said in a statement.This comes at a time when demand continues to grow and global stocks of wheat are at their lowest level since the 1960s, falling from 125m tonnes to a current level of 111m tonnes, it said.Earlier this month, Irish food group Origin Enterprises paid €35m to acquire the 50% shareholding of Odlums previously owned by Greencore.
Carr’s Milling Industries has raised its profit forecast for the year to 30 August 2008.The milling and machinery giant said it had continued to enjoy strong trading since its last update on 27 May.In a statement, Carr’s said its board has upwardly revised guidance, with full-year profits expected to be around £9.2m (2007: £5.5m) on revenue of at least £330m (2007: £253m). These would represent increases of 67% and 30% respectively.Carr’s food business – which includes flour milling – had increased revenue from similar volumes to last year as it has raised the price of its flour to compensate for the large increase in the cost of milling wheat. It added “while profit has increased, margins remain unsatisfactorily slim”.Carr’s other business interests include animal feed (the bulk of revenue), fertiliser, retail equipment, machinery and engineering.
Coffee Republic’s chief executive Steven Bartlett is to stand down at the company’s forthcoming Annual General Meeting. The coffee bar chain’s current executive chairman, Peter Breach, will take over the role temporarily while a permanent replacement is found. Bartlett will remain on Coffee Republic’s board in a non-executive role. It is expected that he will be appointed vice-chairman at the AGM, and will continue to hold shares in the company.Bartlett has been chief executive since October 2006, when he set up a shareholder pressure group which helped to oust founder Bobby Hashemi from the company.In a statement, the company said: “Bartlett has accomplished a notable turnaround and has established Coffee Republic as a major coffee house brand in the UK whilst also establishing the foundation for a strong international brand.”This directorate change will enable Bartlett to dedicate more time to his businesses and family in Plymouth, whilst still providing Coffee Republic with his “expertise and enthusiasm for the brand”.
A new espresso machine from La Spaziale is available through Café du Monde. The ’Special’, manufactured in Italy, is a fully automatic machine, operated by a push-button. It comes with two frothers as standard and is available in two sizes – the 2-group machine (10-litre capacity) and the 3-group machine (15-litre capacity). “The strength of the euro has made life difficult for customers looking to start a coffee service or to re-equip. The ’Special’ is a basic machine with none of the ’bells and whistles’ associated with top-end machines,” said Mike Osborne, sales director of Café du Monde. “That said, it is manufactured in Italy to La Spaziale’s usual high standards.”Lease deals are also available from the company. The £23.71 per week package includes the 2-group machine and a start-up package, which includes grinder, knock-out drawer, water softener, installation, staff training and a full 12-months parts and labour warranty.[http://www.cafedumonde.co.uk]
Zurich-based speciality bakery Aryzta has seen its Food Europe division shrink as growth falls by 1.4% in the nine months to 25 April 2009.Its Food North America and Food Developing Markets both experienced growth or 22.7% and 14.9% respectively, resulting in an overall growth of 5.7% for its food businesses. Group revenue for Food Europe stood at €848.9m, with volumes declining in the UK and Irish marketplace.Chief executive officer Owen Killian said: “Consumer sentiment continued to deteriorate resulting in lower consumer spending in most channels.”He said that revenue growth has slowed in all markets, but that the company “is very well positioned with product, channel and geographic diversity combined with a very responsive business model.”
Dunstable, BedfordshireMachinery: a bespoke modular plastic belt conveying systemWhy installed: to integrate new packaging equipment for crumpets in production hallsHow it came about: Honeytop Speciality Foods wanted Astec Conveyors to design a conveying system from the discharge of the flow-wrappers in the production hall, through to the warehouse for packing into baskets or cases ready for hand-palletisingWhat it does: wrapped product can be discharged from the flow-wrappers down a chute to a low level conveyor, then transported through the machines, up an inclined modular belt conveyor and on to the warehouse via overhead modular plastic slat conveyors. On entering the warehouse, product is conveyed to low level, where it is transferred into a checkweigher, prior to being packed into plastic baskets or cases for hand-palletisingTech spec: the stainless steel, food-quality modular plastic belt conveying system combines a series of 11.5cm (4.5-inch) slat conveyors plus 90° and 180° bendsProblems solved: the system allows the conveyors to change speed, depending on the production conditions; as one FlexPicker can handle the total production if required, the conveyor system automa-tically adjusts speed to suit Supplied by: Astec Conveyorwww.astecconveyors.com