Greggs upscales its retail system

first_imgBakery retailer Greggs has selected touchscreen computer specialist firm J2 Retail Systems to supply EPOS hardware into its Greggs and Bakers Oven stores. The contract – the result of a period of negotiation between J2 and Greggs to produce an embedded system – will initially see the installation of J2 550 integrated touchscreen terminals into 300 stores. On completion of this roll-out, J2 will be the primary hardware provider in the gradual replacement of the whole Greggs estate, which covers over 1,100 Greggs and over 200 Bakers Oven shops.J2 used Greggs’ own application, the Linux Red Hat operating system, to develop a thin client hardware solution, which can be pole-mounted to maximise the space available for customer service. The application uses flashcard technology with no need for a hard drive.Also, in consideration of the harsh temperature, humidity and air quality in the bakery industry, the J2 550 range of terminals has been designed around a VIA chip set, which does not require a cooling fan. “With around 5 million quick-sale customers every week, we need our EPOS till system to withstand a great deal of use, while providing reliable networking functionality for our back office systems,” says Greggs group IT manager Rory McDougal. EPOS hardware is one of the largest expenses a retailer faces, according to J2 Retail national sales manager Richard Heitmann. “So it’s important that the short-term cost is offset by low ongoing maintenance costs. By working with Greggs to develop a bespoke solution suited to their in-house applications and to the bakery environment, total cost of ownership will be kept to a minimum.”last_img read more

British firms head to Paris

first_imgBritish bread, cake and ingred-ients suppliers are off to Paris this month for this year’s biggest international food fair, SIAL.Naan bread producers Honeytop Speciality Foods and Mayur Foods, along with The Silver Spoon Co and other British firms, will join more than 5,000 exhibitors at SIAL, from 22-26 October.Some 136,000 international visitors are expected to attend the show. Special events this year include fine foods, coffee and tea pavilions and a Nutrition Village, where food industry professionals, restaurateurs and nutritionists will highlight their work.last_img read more

A question of taste

first_imgChocolate has traditionally been seen as being something of an indulgence, but consumer demand for healthy alternatives has even stretched as far as this cocoa delight. As well as health, premium products are on the up, as is origin chocolate. So what new products are manufacturers and suppliers offering?Despite the seemingly indulgent nature of chocolate, it’s no stranger to healthier alternatives. Zurich-based cocoa and chocolate product manufacturer Barry Callebaut recently developed a range of ’rebalanced’ products that contain more dietary fibres, less sugar and less fat.The company’s developments focus on two areas – one purely on indulgence and the other on the combination of indulgence and health aspects. “Nowadays, more and more people accept the idea that chocolate and health can go together,” explains Ann Doeth, marketing manager. “This is a very different situation to three years ago.”In terms of new products, the company will be launching Croquoa at HIE (Health Ingredients Europe) 2008 in Paris in November. “It is a new extruded texture to give added value to products. It is made with cocoa and sugar and can be put in different applications such as tablets,” explains Doeth, who says the company will also be highlighting some of its recently-launched products, including ACTICOA, tooth-friendly chocolate and probiotic chocolate.As well as health, there is also a move towards more premium products – for example, origin chocolates. The company did a recent survey on what consumers eat, chocolate-wise and found that, in the UK, 21% already eat origin chocolate, second only to the USA.Barry Callebaut aims to present innovations in chocolate that also combine the pleasure effect because, as Doeth adds, “taste remains the most important thing”.== Origin chocolates ==Puratos provides chocolate ingredients to the bakery sector through Belgian chocolate manufacturer Belcolade. Its most recent development has been the extension of its Collection range, with three new origin chocolates from Uganda, Vanuatu and the Dominican Republic. “Since the beginning of the year, interest in the new origins has been overwhelming,” says Matt Crumpton, marketing manager.The three additions are: Noir Collection Uganda 80, with its high cocoa content; Lait Collection Vanuatu 44, which delivers a strong cocoa flavour with a hint of coffee and spice; and the Blanc Collection Dominican Republic 31, which has a lighter butter and milk flavour, with a hint of flowers and dried fruit.This year’s Speciality & Fine Food Fair in September saw the unveiling of a new range of Organic & Fairtrade Couverture by Josef Zotter, a producer from Austria, whose chocolate is distributed in the UK through Merchant Europe. The range consists of 11 varieties, which increase in cocoa content, up to 100%, and have Ecuadorian, Peruvian, Nicaraguan or Dominican roots. Varieties include: a 10% cocoa blend with almonds, Tyrolean organic milk, cane sugar & vanilla; a 30% white chocolate blend; 60%, 70%, 80% and 90% dark chocolate blends; and a 100% pure sugar-free creation. There is also a 40% Soya Milk couverture, for non-dairy eaters.”Couvertures typically have a very low particle size and a lower viscosity than chocolate that contains less than 31% total fat, thus offering a smoother, silkier mouthfeel and different melting characteristics,” explains Simon Godden, NPD manager of agricultural processor ADM Classic, which sources cocoa beans from across the globe and processes them into a range of cocoa powders, butters and liquors under the De Zaan brand name.Meanwhile, developer, producer and supplier Unifine Food & Bake Ingredients is offering tips on chocolate use. It recently launched a ’chocolate mailing list’, giving buyers access to a range of recipes using chocolate, as well as advance information on special offers and new products. The Unifine 2008 Collection houses a range of chocolate decorations and toppings, including chocolate flowers, white and milk chocolate sucrea duo rose buds and sucrea curls.Chocs away with these suppliers:[http://www.belcolade.com] / [http://www.puratos.co.uk][http://www.merchant-europe.co.uk][http://www.unifine.uk.com][http://www.barry-callebaut.com][http://www.admworld.com]last_img read more

Croda boosts Omega 3

first_imgCroda has launched Omelife Smooth, which can be added to a variety of bakery product mixes and enables bakers to state claims regarding the inclusion of Omega 3.Omelife can be added to products such as breads, muffins, nutritional bars and frozen dough – for example to use in a pizza base. For muffins it can be added to dry ingredients at the water phase and doesn’t compromise on taste or flavour, says the company. For use in dough, it can either be added to the mix of flour, water and yeast, for example, or can be pre-mixed into a quantity of the water for quicker incorporation into the mix.Croda says the product has been proven to achieve high inclusions of EPA and DHA (Omega 3 fatty acids). A muffin, for example, would contain 450mg per 50g serving.Omelife is marketed as a way of including the benefits of Omega 3 rich fish in products, but without the smell or taste.www.croda.comlast_img read more

Caravan carry-on

first_imgOur lingerie story should convince you that British Baker is a broad church. And so it is that we extend a hand oh why hold back, have a kiss, it’s Christmas! to our new friends at Practical Caravan magazine. Stop the Week spotted a story online about a competition that the mobile-dwelling bible ran in association with Lakeland, to find the best caravan-shaped cake. The competition was launched in September alongside a feature on “how to make the perfect caravan cake” (see pic above).Vital business info for cake baking readers, we thought, so we got in touch. “’Perfect’ may have been a bit strong for my caravan cake…,” caravan-writer-cum-cake-baker Alyson Warnock at Practical Caravan told us. Nevertheless, she added, they received an astonishing 100 entries off the back of it, “most of which made my cake look very amateurish.”A harsh self-critic, I’m sure you’ll agree. And if you don’t, then surely the winning competition entry has attained caravan cake perfection (see pic right).last_img read more

Visit SIAB in Verona

first_imgSIAB, the Italian bakery show, will take place at Verona in the Veronafiere showground from May 22-26.SIAB, which stands for the ’Show of White Art’, is one of the biggest international shows for bakery, pastry, confectionery, machinery and ingredients. It has innovation as its theme. The last event featured 400 exhibitors from 15 countries over a 50,000sq m area. A techno-bake forum will provide a workshop for fresh ideas and there will be special areas to show off new pastries, semi-finished goods and pizzas.Bread recipes, cakes and machinery will feature heavily, with exhibitors such as Polin, Mondial Forni, MIWE and VE.AR saving up new launches for the show.last_img read more

Inclusion innovation

first_imgAnyone noticed a change in supermarket hot cross buns this year? Did you observe, perhaps, that the fruit was particularly moist? Well, you would be right.More and more, big industrial bakers are insisting that their vine fruits are pre-soaked in orange juice or water to give them extra succulence. It means the wet dough does not leech into the dried fruit, so it gives a softer product with better keeping qualities. It’s a trick of the trade from the craft sector, adapted by the plant sector, says Whitworths’ business unit director, ingredients Dan Sparshatt.With innovation often quoted as the lifeblood of the food industry, what else is new with fruits, nuts and seeds? Sparshatt says: “Soaked fruits are now our biggest seller to bakery, far and away. We are operating in challenging times, with cost an important factor, but customers are still innovating on fruits, nuts and seeds either to allow cost savings or to add value to the product or even both.”One innovation that ticks both those boxes is the increasingly popular soft fruit option, where a base fruit is infused with a fruit juice concentrate, he says. Apple infused with blueberry juice is a big seller, for example and the product comes out at half the cost of a blueberry. Flavours such as mango and passion fruit also lend themselves well to this patented technology and there is rising demand.But it would be difficult to identify “the next big thing” he adds. Tastes have not really changed dramatically, with raisins and sultanas remaining top sellers. None of the superfruits have really gained critical mass.However, there are plenty of interesting ideas around; plantain chips was one new product launched in the UK recently, for example. But these introductions “need the craft sector to make something of them by launching interesting new products”, he says.Quick reactionThe craft sector is often the early adopter of innovation, he suggests: “They can react quickly to trends and they have the skills to innovate. But we also see innovation in the industrial sector both can learn from each other.”Frank Horan, director of Unicorn Ingre-dients, a big seeds supplier to bakery, agrees that the craft sector often leads the way. “In the craft bakery sector, seeds remain a core inclusion,” he says, “but craft bakeries are moving increasingly into other kinds of ingredients, such as sun-dried tomatoes and olives, to add value to their products in the face of competition from plant bakers’ seeded breads.”In the industrial bakery sector, linseed, sunflower and pumpkins seeds are the mainstay inclusions in bread, he adds, with sesame seeds falling out of favour a little due to allergy concerns.Meanwhile, Derek Donkin, CEO of the Southern African Macadamia Growers’ Association, says macadamia nuts may be the next big thing. Sales in the UK have increased by 45% over the past five years and the bakery sector has played a huge role in this growth, he says. “NPD departments are increasingly looking for new ingredients that can add value, set their products apart from competitors and impress adventurous consumers.”Whole macadamias, halves or chips are proving popular with small artisan bakeries, as well as industrial companies, due to their luxury appeal, health benefits and value-adding qualities, he says. They fall into a similar price bracket to hazelnuts, pistachios and pine nuts.Meanwhile, Taura Natural Ingredients recommends its bakestable concentrated fruit pieces, carrying up to seven times their own weight in fruit. These come in a wide range of options, including harder-to-use berry fruits, such as strawberry and blueberry.But back to the plantain chips. Dawn Van Rensburg, recently led top bakers in the Richemont Club of Great Britain on a tour of importer John Morley’s premises in Cheshire. The club was on the hunt for new ideas for NPD. And let’s just say they were inspired. Watch out for plantain chips coming soon to a muffin near you.last_img read more

Erlenbacher sets its sights on UK market

first_imgEuropean cakes and desserts manufacturer Erlenbacher is to bring its frozen ranges to the UK foodservice market this month.The firm, which produces over 16 million cakes per year, told British Baker its main focus to date had been southern and eastern Europe, but “as the UK is the second biggest market based on volume for frozen cakes, gateaux and desserts within Europe”, it sees it as a big opportunity. The firm is looking to target foodservice businesses such as coffee shops and restaurant chains, but wouldn’t rule out supplying bakeries as it currently does in Germany. Erlenbacher already supplies 30 different countries, and said it believed its products, which are free of artificial preservatives, colours and flavours would appeal in the growing trend for healthier eating.“It is proven that the UK has an affi-nity to frozen food and because the frozen cake market is still growing, we feel it is a good time to extend our business in this area,” said MD Bernhard Neumeister. “We would like to expand on an organic base, together with our partners in the UK, and within a reasonable time be a recognised supplier for high-quality frozen cakes, gateaux and desserts, which also provides solutions and services in the UK,” said Neumeister. He added there were currently no plans for a UK production base, but that the firm was extending its production site in Germany to allow for the production of new lines and to provide increased capacity.The UK range will consist of a selection of cream & fruit gateaux and slices, traybakes, traditional cakes, ‘miniGugls’ and sweet moments cup desserts, all supplied pre-cut in single portions.>>Thorntons to tackle chilled bakery marketlast_img read more

Country Choice targets convenience stores

first_imgCountry Choice has launched an entry-level bakery concept, aimed at small convenience stores.The concept includes a compact four-tray oven, freezer, cooling stand, baking trays and POS pack, as well as four wicker display baskets with chalk-style header panels to communicate the ’freshly baked in-store today’ message, disposable shelf-liners, and shelf-talkers. Free on-site training and a bakery guide are also part of the package.Country Choice said retailers can expect margins of more than 40% on a range of products that includes white crusty rolls, baguettes, all-butter croissants and fun-size jam doughnuts.Marketing controller Stephen Clifford said: “By selling as few as 50 items throughout the day, a retailer can expect to make a cash margin of around £71, equal to a yearly profit in excess of £3,000.”last_img read more

Ball State University students put on notice about ignoring COVID-19 safety measures

first_img Google+ WhatsApp      Geoffrey S. Mearns     President     Ball State University August 28, 2020Dear Parent or Guardian:     I write to you today because I am concerned about the increase in the number of students who have tested positive for the coronavirus. It is clear from a review of the data that I have been monitoring on a daily basis that the steady increase in positive cases is not linked to academic classrooms or spaces, or the residence halls.     Instead, this concerning trend is apparently the result of poor personal choices some students are making, primarily off campus. The actions of these students are putting our planned on-campus instruction and activities at risk. Simply put, if these students do not change their behavior, I may be compelled to temporarily suspend all on-campus courses or convert to remote instruction almost all on-campus courses for the remainder of the Fall semester.     The choices our students make this weekend will impact whether we are able to continue to provide the on-campus experience that students have told us they value. For us to continue to provide that experience, everyone in the Ball State community, especially our students, must act responsibly:When you are inside any building, wear a mask and practice physical distancing.When you are outside, wear a mask unless you can comfortably maintain at least six feet from another person.Avoid all large gatherings, including crowded restaurants.If you have symptoms of COVID-19, do not go to class and avoid close contact with other people. Use the symptom checker and seek medical guidance.If you have been advised to isolate or quarantine, strictly follow the directions given to you by your health care provider.     I have been encouraging compliance with our safety protocols. But since encouragement has not been enough, we are now enforcing it.     Our Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities prohibits conduct that causes or threatens harm to the health or safety of another person, both on and off campus. Our Division of Students Affairs and Office of Student Conduct have received complaints, and we are presently taking appropriate disciplinary action against several students and three fraternities. The consequences for failure to comply with our protocols include suspension and expulsion.     Again this weekend, our University Police Department (UPD) officers will respond to calls about large gatherings with close contact and no face masks. Our UPD officers will take appropriate enforcement actions if students are violating Indiana laws. If our UPD officers observe student behavior that violates our Student Code, the officers will refer the students to the Office of Student Conduct for investigation, adjudication, and sanctioning.     Of course, I understand that the Ball State experience includes forging friendships that last a lifetime. And I want our students to develop these relationships. But our students must do so while protecting their own health and the health of other people.     There are several ways to connect with old friends and to meet new ones while staying safe. Check out BennyLink to learn about all the events and activities happening on campus. And when students just need a break, I encourage them to make the most of our beautiful green spaces on campus where they can interact with their friends from a safe distance.     To maintain the Ball State experience we want, we all must work together and adhere to our University’s enduring values and our safety protocols. Twitter      Sincerely, Pinterest Ball State University students put on notice about ignoring COVID-19 safety measures Facebook WhatsAppcenter_img Previous articleBanks introduces bill to penalize people caught looting, vandalizing while protestingNext articleMan shot at GoLo gas station on Miami Street in South Bend 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. “BSU” by Daniel Hartwig, some rights reserved The President of Ball State University is warning students of major consequences after an increase in the number of students who’ve tested positive for coronavirus.In a letter to students and parents, the president says the trend upward is not linked to academic classrooms or spaces, or the residence halls. Instead, he says it’s the result of poor personal choices some students are making, primarily off campus and if those students don’t change their behavior, he may be compelled to temporarily suspend all on-campus courses or convert to remote instruction for the remainder of the Fall semester.The university is taking disciplinary action against several students and at least three fraternities.Below is the full letter sent to the Ball State University community: CoronavirusIndianaLocalNews Pinterest Twitter By Jon Zimney – August 30, 2020 1 505 Google+ Facebooklast_img read more