Two Baking Industry Awards 2005 winners and one finalist have been made members of the Incorporation of Bakers of Glasgow, in recognition of their achievement at the awards, organised by British Baker.Celebration Cake Maker of the Year Debra Cunningham and Student Baker of the Year Andrew Fairley, as well as highly commended Daniel Smith, received the honour at Glasgow Trades House last month. Before collecting the honour from the Deacon, Norrie Fyfe, they were granted Freeman Citizenship of the city of Glasgow, which is necessary to become a member of the Incorporation.Ms Cunningham is head of the cake decorating department at 44-shop Skeltons Bakery based in Hull. Andrew Fairley and Daniel Smith are both from Greggs North East.The Incorporation is part of the Glasgow Trades House, set up over 400 years ago to look after workers and their families involved in 14 major crafts.
“Irwin’s bakery of Ireland, in partnership with the beer brand Guinness, has created a new Guiness bread, following two years of pro-duct research and development.Made by Irwin’s at its Portadown bakery, the new wholegrain bread contains 17% Guinness. Michael Murphy, Irwin’s business development controller said that the product had already secured key UK and Ireland listings with major retailers such as Tesco.
When eating bread, most of us probably don’t think about the empty space in it, but rather whether we like its texture and flavour. Yet both of these are driven by bubbles. This is because one of the key aims when mixing is to ensure that air is trapped in the dough and, for sandwich and toast bread, we want the air to be evenly dispersed.After mixing, dough is moulded and proved. In these steps the dispersion of air is modified, with a few of the bubbles collapsing, while most increase in size, so expanding the volume. At this stage, the bubbles are filled with both air and carbon dioxide gas from fermentation. When the dough is baked, further expansion occurs as the water boils to steam.More regular bubbles ensure there are no large holes in the bread crumb, creating an even texture and a softer eating quality, so it is important to consider which factors might cause a change to their number and size. Among the many is the inclusion of bran in the dough, either through the use of wholemeal flour, or directly. Bran is ’thirsty’ for water, reducing the amount available for gluten development; we need this to create enough strength in the dough to stop the bubbles bursting as they expand. Also, the pieces of bran physically interrupt the gluten network, again reducing its ability to hold the bubbles. We overcome some of these problems with the use of ingredients, such as fat and emulsifiers.—-=== Dr Campbell says: ===”Bakers have made great strides in producing much more palatable wholemeal breads. Nevertheless, the vast majority of bread sold and eaten is still white, so it cannot be claimed that the problem has been solved. The amount of research devoted to wholemeal bread is a tiny fraction of that devoted to white bread. Understanding bubble behaviour, which has been so beneficial to white bread research, may well bring further improvements to wholemeal breads. Because this is a new and relevant way of viewing this type of bread, it is bound to give new insights that might translate into commercial applications that would indeed improve consumption.”
Food manufacturers should welcome the crackdown launched by the Gangmasters Licensing Authority (GLA) to stamp out exploitation of foreign workers, which will involve up to 30 raids across the UK, inter- national law firm Eversheds said last week.Eversheds partner Owen Warnock said the GLA’s Operation Ajax was probably the only realistic way of enforcing the law. “Most businesses in the food industry will welcome Operation Ajax, despite the disruption it may cause,” he said. “Food manufacturers, growers and gangmasters who obey the rules will welcome the removal of unfair competition from those who illegally undercut the minimum conditions.”He added that scandals about exploitation of workers can be very damaging to retailers and brand names “even though quite often the fault does not lie with them but with a dishonest or careless gangmaster company”.The GLA’s campaign is supported by the TUC. Deputy general secretary Frances O’Grady said at its launch last week that the TUC’s Commission on Vulnerable Employment had found two million workers in the UK faced “extreme exploitation”.
Linpac Packaging has launched a new polyolefin stretch film called MagicLIN. The film has been designed to be easier to cut than traditional cling films, and can be cut by hand, removing the need for a blade.The film is made from multi-layer polyolefin, and can be used to cover food in a refrigerator or a container used in microwave cooking. The film has been manufactured to provide ease of use, strength and visual appeal.[http://www.linpac-plastics.co.uk]
Student and trainee bakers up and down the country are gearing up for the annual Alliance for Bakery Students and Trainees (ABST) conference, which takes place from 1-3 May 2009.The conference is being held at the TLH Leisure Resort in Torquay, Devon, and features a host of activities, as well as student bakery competitions and the AGM.The Friday night is Silly Hat Night, and there will be a buffet dinner, pub quiz and karaoke. Saturday will see the judging of the bakery competitions, as well as a ten-pin bowling competition, gala dinner and live band.The AGM will take place on Sunday, as well as the prize- giving, the ten-pin bowling final, a disco and a casino.Students can attend for an all-inclusive price of £75, and a maximum of two tutors can go for the price of one student.There are many cash prizes on offer for the various contests, including Calfornia Raisins’ competition, where a top prize of a £500 travel voucher is up for grabs. There are two categories – one for baking and one for confectionery – and students need to create innovative recipes using California Raisins, raisin paste or raisin juice concentrate. For more information contact [email protected] transport pick-ups are available from Leeds, Black- pool, Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Sheffield and London.l To book tickets and rooms, please contact [email protected] bakemark.co.uk.
Tower redundancyRising fuel prices have forced Scottish craft firm Tower Bakery to make one of its bakers redundant for the first time in its 30-year history. While some firms have been forced to raise prices, the Perth-based chain said the fuel tax rise meant it had also put some production staff on a four-day week.Bako’s honorary headBako North Western has announced the recent retirement from the board of its longest-serving director, Derek Grimshaw. He had served on the board since 1983 and, in recognition of his long association with the business, has been appointed honorary president of the company and its management team.Call for cupcakesBakers on the south coast are being invited to a Cupcake Camp to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Support. To be held at The Lighthouse in Poole on 2 April, the event aims to get at least 1,000 donated; each cupcake will cost only £1 on the day, with all proceeds going to charity. Full details are on www.facebook.com/CupcakeCampBournemouth.Royal visit to schoolThe Artisan School of Food had a visit from the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, who were given a tour around the butchery and bakery training rooms at the school, based on the Welbeck Estate in Nottinghamshire, and unveiled a plaque to commemorate their visit.Closure for FitzbilliesCambridge cake shop Fitzbillies in Trumpington Street has gone out of business after 90 years in the city. Cambridge’s colleges traditionally used its cakes when catering for special occasions and some of the 25 staff had worked there for more than 30 years.
Nine out of 10 consumers expect food prices to rise in the year ahead and 29% intend to swap to discounters, new research has revealed.The IGD ShopperTrack, commissioned recently by the research group, also found that 16% intend to use more frozen food specialists.The news that more people intend to shop at discount retailers comes just after Lidl revealed plans to expand its own in-store bakeries (ISBs). The German retailer, with over 580 stores in the UK, has completed stage one of the project, installing ISBs in 75 stores in its north east sales region, bringing its total number of outlets with ISBs in the UK to 90.Joanne Denney-Finch, chief executive of IGD, commenting on the research, said: “The vast majority of shoppers believe that food inflation is set to increase over the next 12 months. They are not taking it lying down and are prepared to sacrifice some of their time by shopping around at different retail formats, from discounters to frozen food stores, to get the best deals.”The IGD study also found that shoppers with secondary school children are more likely to increase their use of grocery discounters; 39% of shoppers with children aged 11-18 vs 27% of those without children expect to increase their use of grocery discounters over the next year.
Pukka Pies has launched two new initiatives to entice both new and loyal customers.The company, based in Leicestershire, will be giving away 20 million points in a new loyalty scheme, which will require customers to input a unique code found on product packaging into its website. Customers can then redeem points for Pukka Pies merchandise, prize draws, family days out, free cinema tickets and donations to charity.Peter Mayes, Pukka Pies’ marketing and business development controller, said: “We know everyone is feeling the pinch right now, so we teamed up with our friends at Coinks to create the Pukka Points promotion. It’s a great way of saying thank you to our consumers for buying Pukka Pies. It will offer real savings on a whole range of rewards.”The pie firm is also entering into a new television sponsorship deal with ITV1. It will back a new 20-episode series called Ade in Britain, a programme broadcast five nights a week, following Ade Edmondson on a culinary discovery around the British Isles.The company has previously sponsored ITV1 shows, such as Who Wants to be a Millionaire and currently holds a long-term sponsorship with the official England Football Supporters’ Band.
Starbucks UK will be looking to tackle youth unemployment by creating 5,000 new jobs in the next five years throughout the UK.The move will help to support the global coffee company’s plans to develop and expand its new drive-thru concept, for which it currently has nine outlets nationwide, with the first having opened in Cardiff in 2008. The new roles to be created over the next five years will support Starbuck UK’s aim to open up 200 drive-thru outlets during the same period of time.Kris Engskov, managing director of Starbucks UK and Ireland, said: “Customers told us that they now expect the best possible coffee wherever they are and the success of our first drive-thru stores shows that this is a huge opportunity. It also means that we are able to create quality jobs at a time when they are most needed and because half of our baristas are under 24 years old, this will particularly benefit young job-seekers at a time of record youth unemployment.”Around half of the drive-thrus will be operated under licence by petrol forecourt retailer Euro Garages, with many of these stores to be located in the Midlands and the north of England.Zuber Issa, managing director of Euro Garages, said: “Our relationship with Starbucks has been a huge success to date. We’re delighted to be making such a positive announcement about our expansion together that will create new and exciting employment opportunities for so many people across our sites.”Starbucks has found many new places to sell its coffee, including on trains and planes as well as in supermarkets and workplaces. In 2010, Starbucks opened 35 motorway stores with Welcome Break, serving seven million cups in the first year of operation.The company has more than 700 stores in the UK, contributing to consistent sales growth during the last two years.