first_imgPENZANCE-BASED bakery chain Warrens, with 56 shops, says it has got the year “off to a brilliant start” with a French-themed promotion.Product development manager Jason Jobling said the company is offering a nine-line French range for the month of February, including French sticks, croissants, pains au chocolat as well as Boeuf Bourguignon pasties and French onion soup. Customers who buy three or more products in the French range can enter a competition to win a £500 French holiday voucher, a prize sponsored by ADM Milling. Sales so far have been extremely strong Mr Jobling said, with French sticks selling five times the normal amounts. He commented: “Christmas was good, but like most bakers we find the start of the year quite slow. We wanted to do something different this year, and this promotion has got it off to a brilliant start.”Warrens intends to run Italian- and American-themed promotions this year and has more ideas for next year. he added.last_img read more

first_imgCrispy Corners/BorekiBASIC DOUGH RECIPEkg %Egg 0.24 10.0Salt 0.01 0.4Yoghurt (full fat) 0.8 33.0Flour (medium strength) 1.0 42.0Butter (soft) 0.36 15.0Total 2.41 100.0 Boreki are the best-selling savouries of the near and Middle East and are immensely popular with both locals and visitors.The concept is versatile, easy and inexpensive and they eat very well – cold, warm or hot. The pastry uses yoghurt, olive oil, eggs, and butter and is very tasty. It is rolled very thinly, and filled with small quantities of strongly flavoured fillings. These are then fried or baked and are great to eat.From the basic idea I have developed what I believe to be a snack of tremendous potential. While with Unilever, Tesco asked if I could develop an ambient stable snack, based on ravioli. I never achieved the eating quality, but I had not considered frying them. With fillings that are ambient-stable, Boreki variants could be a competitor in the massive crisp market. Knowledge of water movement and food technology is needed, but it can be done. METHOD1. Whisk the egg, salt and yoghurt together.2. Beat in the flour to form a smooth soft dough – the flour you use will determine the exact quantity. Aim for a silky texture. Allow this to stand 15 minutes or so.3. Continue now as you would for English puff pastry; the butter should be spread evenly over two-thirds of the dough. Refrigerate for 60 minutes or more then give three or four half-turns. You will need to keep it refrigerated as it is soft, but do not be afraid of using loads of flour in rolling it out. I worked with Georges Blanc at Vonnas 20 years ago and he made the most wonderful full puff pastry in the same way, but with the amount of flour used in processing, probably reduced to little more than three-quarters.4. Roll the dough as thinly as you can (a maximum of 2mm) and cut into 7cm squares.5. Place the filling in the middle of a diagonal half, and fold to form a triangle, then seal the edges. Refrigerate or freeze until required.6. Fry in good oil about 3cm deep, 180ºC for 5 or 6 minutes. Or they can be brushed with oil and baked in a hot oven – not as good but still delicious. The advantage of the fried ones is that they re-heat remarkably well in the microwave.Fillings suggestions?Grated cheese with olive oil and dry mint?Grated cheese with olive oil, onion and dill?Raw ground beef or lamb with onion, salt and cinnamon?Lumpy mashed potato with garlic, cheese and butter?Keema curry, uncooked?Minced chicken with a chopped onion, fresh coriander (or Porter foods version in oil), salt and white peppercenter_img Snack size1.5mm-thick pastry, 7cm square: 16gFilling: 7gTotal: 23glast_img read more

first_imgBakers have pulled together with acts of charity and camaraderie following the recent devastating floods in Gloucestershire.After Sunshine Craft Bakery in Stroud was flooded by three feet of water last week, the owner of nearby Walkers Bakery offered Sunshine the use of his facilities.Ray Hill of Sunshine said: “We only lost one day’s bread supply. Bakers have a kindred spirit of goodwill and camaraderie.”Power motors and condensers were saturated at Sunshine’s bakery and all stock and some packaging were destroyed.Hill added that Draycotts Bakery in Dursley and Hobbs House Bakery in Chipping Sodbury also contacted him with offers to help.D Gibbon & Sons, a Newport bakery, sent bakery products at its own expense to Tewksbury, including bread, sausage rolls and cakes. A delivery was sent every day from 23-28 July.The council distributed to high priority people, including nursing homes. “I think there is a real sense of community spirit among bakers and where we can help we will,” said Derek Gibbon.Janes Pantry in Gloucester has been without running water for over a week and although supply is now back on, it is undrinkable and cannot be used for bakery production for at least another two weeks.MD Nevil Morse said that the company continued to “battle on” and was glad to receive goods and help from Oliver Adams, a large bakery in Northampton. He said: “They’ve also washed out huge jam containers and filled them with water, so we can take water back to our factory.”last_img read more

first_imgBritish Bakeries said last week it was consulting on closing its Bradford bakery and scaling down activities at its Telford depot. It also refused to rule out possible future closures at other sites.British Bakeries, owned by Premier Foods, said increased self-sufficiency of operations in the south of England was a factor in the 90-day consultations.It said there was now less of a requirement to move goods around the country, while bread consumption was falling. The company has proposed that only dispatch and logistics operations employing 250 people will be retained at Bradford. Jobs lost could total 370. At Telford, warehousing and logistics would go, leading to an estimated 60 jobs cut.A spokeswoman said: “The proposed closure of Bradford and Telford is part of Premier Foods’ plan to make its manufacturing footprint as efficient as possible. There are no current plans to close any more sites but we can’t give a categorical assurance of that, given the nature of the business and the very competitive environment.”A Transport and General Workers Union source said: “We believe the latest closures that have been announced are just the start.”British Bakeries has 23 UK sites, employing 6,500 people.On 31 July its Plymouth manufacturing operations ceased, with the loss of 150 jobs. The site now functions as a depot.last_img read more

first_imgI am at last eligible for a government grant. After all, if illegal immigrants are being given a free flight home and £4,000 to start up a business, I think I must be eligible, as I will explain. And I do not intend leaving the country, so I will not even cost the government the airfare.So how do I qualify? Well, according to family legend, way back in time, a large Scotsman came over the border on a rape-and-pillage raid. He was either a) very clever and brave or b) rather stupid and kept going too far, so he missed England and ended up in Wales, where he met a beautiful Welsh lady called Phillips. And here am I, the fruit of their loins.True, there are a few generations between us, but I feel sure my Scottish forefather did not enter England with any of the appropriate papers. So the only reason I can surmise as to why I have never succeeded in obtaining a grant is because I did not come over in the back of a lorry.While I try to be reasonably law-abiding, it always feels as if I am being punished for behaving lawfully; while if I break the law, there is a whole army of do-gooders out there waiting to make excuses for me and steal your tax money to give me in large dollops. The old saying used to be ’Crime does not pay’. But our politicians have already proved that to be a load of rubbish; incompetence and corruption appear to reign in all public walks of life.We businessmen, I am convinced, are the only remaining upright honest citizens – or should I say slaves – left in the system. Should we behave as our so-called peers behave, our customers would leave us in droves and we would be bankrupt within weeks.It may be quaint, but we have to deliver what we promise our customers or they would go, and there would be about 100 useless bureaucrats descending on us, fining us for every conceivable error they could find, as well as inventing some new statute to fine us for.Once upon a time, there was a pact with governments; they provided a police force to protect us and we, in return, were not allowed to take the law into our own hands. Except during my National Service, I have never fired a gun; they are far too noisy. Yet I am increasingly leaning towards the American view that my home is my castle and, if a number of large louts are attempting to burglarise and harm me and my family, a gun would be far preferable to some crazy expectation that the police might come to my aid.Reading the papers, however, it would seem that if I shouted racial remarks at the police, they would arrive in force and quicker. Although that may be anecdotal, I fear it is more likely true.last_img read more

first_imgFood retailers are shielding customers from the full impact of soaring commodity prices, according to figures produced by the British Retail Consor- tium (BRC).The Shop Price Index, developed by the Consortium and administered by marketing information company AC Nielsen, showed that fresh food prices increased by 6.4% in May compared with this time last year, a rise from 4.5% in April. But the BRC noted that, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), increases in the price of petroleum products faced by retailers amounted to 25.4% and therefore “consumers have experienced a comparatively small increase in the price of fresh foods”.BRC director general Stephen Robertson said: “Intense pressure from rising costs has pushed up the shop price of food, but it is clear retailers are continuing to shield customers from the full impact.”Meanwhile annual inflation for ambient food was 5.4% in May, compared to 5% in April. The BRC report said ambient food faced the same inflationary pressures as fresh foods, with the additional impact of rises in bread and cereal prices, which it added were “mainly the effects of shortages in soft commodities such as rice and grains”.The problems have been exacerbated, according to the BRC, by price controls and export restrictions imposed by up to 30 commodity-producing countries.last_img read more

first_imgEuropean chilled convenience food group Uniq has announced increased losses for the six months to 30 June 2009, despite comments from the firm that it is progressing well.The supplier of sandwiches to Marks & Spencer (M&S) reported a pre-tax loss of £12.8m compared to £2.6m for the comparable period last year. Revenue from continuing operations stood at £141.1m, down from £143.4m in 2008.The firm Uniq is currently in the process of restructuring the company. In March this year, it set out a plan to transform the group in 2009 by returning its UK arm to profitability and either to exit or find joint venture partners for its Continental business. It recently won an extra £15m per annum of sandwich business with M&S, which it said would start to contribute to the figures in the second half of the year.Chief executive Geoff Eaton commented: “We set ourselves a challenging agenda for 2009 and I am very pleased with our progress.“I believe we are on track to complete the transformation of the group to a UK-focused business by the end of the year, and remain confident that we can deliver results in line with our expectations,” added Eaton.Among its highlights, Uniq said, was the agreed €73m (£61.8m) sale of its French business, which forms part of its plan to focus on its UK arm.In the trading statement, the company said consumer trading had been down across the board in 2008. However, it has brought its UK business near to break-even point, having reduced the decline in sales from 4.2% in the second half of 2008 to 1.6% in the first half of 2009; it reduced the level of loss by £1.3m to £0.5m.last_img read more

first_imgWinterhalter has launched a new series of warewashers, which have been designed around caterers and retailers’ dream features. The UC Series combines under-counter dish and glasswashers and claims to produce better results with lower running costs.Winterhalter commissioned research and built a website – my-dream-machine.biz – to compile feedback on what would be the perfect machine. The machines have a single start button, which changes colour to indicate the progress of the wash cycle, and a touchscreen with animations.www.winterhalter.co.uklast_img

first_imgThe Ministry of Food has made an order that will make it an offence, punishable by fine or imprisonment, to waste food. Among the conditions imposed by the order is that where anyone having the disposal of food unreasonably retains it until it becomes unfit for human consumption, he may be punished.Examples of the type of wastes covered are: where food fit for human consumption is wilfully or negligently damaged or thrown away; where anyone having control or custody of food fails to take reasonable precautions for its preservation; and where anyone procures a larger quantity of food than he reasonably requires. No inspectors or “snoopers” will be employed. Our recollection of the order in the last war was that the nature of the penalties did not achieve a great deal in the long run.last_img read more

first_imgA Warburtons factory caught on fire last Thursday night, which took almost four hours to extinguish. The fire at the Manchester factory site on Glebe Street, started in the plant room, located at the top of the building, in the motor of a piece of machinery which pushes flour into the production line.Two fire engines and an aerial appliance from Oldham attended the incident at 8.45pm, using hoses and specialist equipment, including a thermal imaging camera, to put out the flames.A spokesman for Warburtons, said: “All employees were evacuated safely and the fire was quickly contained by the fire brigade.”The company said it would be working with the fire brigade to investigate the cause of the fire.last_img