Greencore follows cost-cutting path and boosts profitability

first_imgIrish group Greencore is now down to 4,300 suppliers from 6,000 18 months ago, with the likelihood of a further reduction under its Total Lowest Cost cost-cutting programme.The group said the programme was contributing to a 2% per year cut in operating costs in its convenience foods division, whose bakery products include cakes, desserts, quiches, Yorkshire puddings and sandwiches. There was a 50% or E2.5m increase year-on-year in energy costs in the division in the six months to the end of March, corresponding to 0.5% of sales.However, Greencore said that its cost-cutting, along with “a strong flow of new products”, helped the division to boost operating profit by 2.2% year-on-year to E30.3m in the six months to the end of March, on sales 8.1% higher at E441.7m.Convenience foods accoun-ted for 72% of operating profit in the six months compared with 25% in 2000; the ingredients division’s share has fallen following restructuring of its malt business.Greencore said that when it has stopped sugar processing in Ireland next year, because of the revamp of the European Union’s sugar support regime, the convenience foods division will produce about 85% of group profit.last_img read more

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Battle lines are drawn

first_imgSwing-0-meter resultsThe swing-o-meter shows that Hovis managed to boost its market share in all 10 UK regions, while Warburtons slipped up slightly in only one region – the north east – with a 0.2% share drop.Troubled Kingsmill had a tough year, appearing to be on the back foot in every region, and losing market share.But it was supermarket own-label that came off worst, between July 2005 and July 2006, with a value drop of 2.3%.The battle lines are being firmly drawn in the south. Warburtons is continuing its offensive on London and the south east, with a new site sought in the south and a £50m investment, doubling the size of its Enfield site over three years.This could further develop Warburtons’ front-running 28% share of total consumer spend on wrapped bread.Warburtons is starting to build share in its development markets, as capacity becomes available following the Tuscany Park build and the repair of the fire-damaged Wednesbury plant, along with investments in Stockton, Rogerstone and Enfield.Where Warburtons has become the clear market leader, it has established a lead over Kingsmill and Hovis, while taking share from own-label, says market analyst David Lang of Investec.Now, as it moves into Hovis-land and starts to develop a meaningful presence in the west and south west, as well as coming up against Kingsmill in the south east, “it’ll be a real punch-up,” says Lang.”The other two aren’t going to be in any mood to give ground. The three of them are going to be fighting it out and the clear loser is going to be own-label.”The question is whether Warburtons succeeds in establishing the sorts of strengths in the south west, London and the south east that they’ve achieved in their old Heartlands – the north, Scotland and the Midlands.”But it was Hovis that outperformed Warburtons on value growth, up 21.2% in the year to June 2006, compared with a still-impressive 16.3% growth for Warburtons.”Hovis has done a very good job in building on its historic health platform – it’s a very relevant brand, especially with Best of Both – and they’ve been investing in that heavily,” says Lang.”But now Kingsmill is clearly getting its production and positioning sorted out, it is arresting the decline and the relaunch starts in earnest early next year.” This month, Tesco issued a regional bread map of Britain, charting the local tastes across the country (British Baker, 3 November, pg 4). Meanwhile, Warburtons has issued its own taste map, charting how most people’s bread tastes are increasingly favouring Hovis and Warburtons.Based on sales figures of plant bread producers in each region, the Warburtons Bakery Review 2006 sheds light on some intriguing power struggles that are playing out within the plant baking industry.From the Midlands upwards, the UK map resembles the United States of Warburtons, while Hovis still dominates Wales and the south – a key battleground for the coming years as Warburtons increases its activities in the southern regions. Welsh successHovis had a great year in Wales and the west, with up to nearly a quarter of total market share.Warburtons gained on third-placed Welsh plant baker Brace’s, which also had a decent year at the expense of Kingsmill. The latter hangs on to its second-placed spot despite a 3% fall.Southern leader Hovis and Warburtons both made big gains across London and the south and east of England, with share up between 3% and 5%, and Hovis performing particularly well.And if trends continue, Hovis could be on course to overtake Kingsmill as the number-two bread behind Warburtons in Scotland.On the products side, the ongoing strategy across the market is to increase the average price of a loaf by getting people to trade up – a trend that has already seen an increase of 2% in the total number of bakery units sold and bakery sales value up by 6.3% on the previous year, to over £3 billion.Bread’s value went up by 9.4%; the two best selling SKUs were Warburtons Toastie White, then Medium White, although the fastest-growing was Hovis Best of Both Medium.Boosting branded bakery further will mean encouraging experimentation into rolls and “bakery occasions”, such as crumpets, bagels and tortillas – an area often neglected by consumers who typically buy just a loaf, says Warburtons.While it’s virtually impossible for the bread category to grow the number of loaves sold – at close to 99% penetration – Warburtons predicts £96m could be added to the bakery category by 2008 if every household not currently buying rolls or bakery occasions could be persuaded to buy just one product a year.”It’s part of the market that hasn’t been particularly well branded and Warburtons has brought something to the category,” says Lang.Branded crumpets, tortillas and malt/fruit loaves all saw sizeable increases in value sales, with New York Bagels the top performer in percentage growth.”The challenge for retailers and manufacturers alike is to ensure the category remains one in which shoppers want to experiment, through innovation of product and in-store innovation,” says chairman Jonathan Warburton.Set against changing shopping habits, with most purchase decisions pre-established through learned patterns of behaviour, and people shopping more frequently but paying less per visit, the key to expanding this category will be getting people to experiment more.*Data sources: AC Nielsen Scantrack and Homescan, 52 w/e 17 June 2006; TNS Worldpanel; Warburtons Bakery Research; HIM CTP 2005; ID Magasin Research; Family Food Panel 2004last_img read more

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Commodities tracker

first_imgPricing has been affected over the last month by significant weakening of the dollar, according to the RM Curtis Edible Nuts & Dried Fruit Market Report, March-April 2007.Report author Mark Setterfield said that many of the products covered by the report had been hit. Against sterling, the dollar has weakened to a landmark 2:1 for the first time since 1980, said the report. “Conversely however, it must also be remembered that those countries exporting in dollars have also experienced dollar weakness and this equates to higher prices from their respective origins,” said Setterfield.Forecasts for the new hazelnut crop are down on the current crop. The present crop is calculated to be around 650,000m tonnes in shell, while the new crop estimate is closer to 550,000m tonnes. This is partly because of extremely dry weather since the start of 2007 in the Black Sea region, Turkey and Greece. “This has spiralled prices at origin upwards of 10% over the past two weeks,” said Setterfield.The walnut market “remains extremely firm”, said the report, even with the compensating currency factor. “But we would strongly suggest that buyers look to cover the remainder of their current crop requirements sooner rather than later,” said Setterfield.He added that there is little to report on cashews. Meanwhile, for pecans, he said: “Even prices in sterling are firm and reflect both origin (US) strength as well as an ever-diminishing trickle of offers of unsold stock. We envisage supply running critically low.”RM Curtis imports, trades and distributes edible nuts, dried fruit, seeds and herbslast_img read more

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Best Bakeries applies for administration: fire breaks out

first_imgFiremen were called in to tackle a blaze that broke out among vans at South Wales’ Ferraris Bakery last night.Three lorries were damaged in the fire outside the plant at Hirwaun in the Cynon Valley, but the bakery itself was unaffected, according to a source.The fire broke out on the same day that Best Bakeries, which owns the plant, applied for administration and laid off around 50 staff.Forty-two employees remain at the plant and business will continue as usual. Ferraris’ shops will continue to be supplied with products, a spokesperson told the BBC.It is not the first time the plant has run into trouble – it went into administration in 2006 under previous owners Cleary Foods. Current owners Best Bakeries bought the business from administrators Begbies Traynor in February 2007, saving 600 jobs.The bakery was severely damaged by a blaze in April 2007.last_img read more

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Festive fare from Delice

first_imgFoodservice solutions provider, Delice de France, is offering a new range of Christmas bakery goods for the approaching festive season. The range consists of 12 new products, including five varieties of mince pie; a spiced fruit & mini cherry bite; cranberry & orange mini loaf cake; winter spiced muffin; Belgian chocolate & orange swirl muffin; chocolate & cherry bundt cake, and a fruit cake.The firm is also offering a cranberry & rosemary rustic roll.”We are particularly pleased with our latest Christmas offering, which combines the most innovative festive ideas and flavours with convenience,” said marketing director David Girdler.”The comprehensive range is designed to help our customers increase their sales and profits significantly during the vital Christmas period with cakes, breads, pies and muffins that taste as good as they look.”[http://www.delicedefrance.co.uk]last_img read more

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Continental bakery firm plans rapid development

first_imgContinental bakery retail concept Belgique is planning a three-year period of growth, which will take it from eight to 25 outlets by 2012.The Essex-based chain secured the backing of major Belgian flour and frozen bakery supplier La Lorraine Bakery Group, which acquired a 50% stake in the business. Belgique plans to expand into north and then west London.”It is seven concepts under one roof – bakery, patisserie, chocolaterie, coffee shop, sandwich bar, delicatessen and wedding and celebration cakes,” explained founder Igor Bekaert. “There are too many so-called bakery-patisseries where you cannot buy a loaf of bread, a birthday cake or a large fruit tart. But we do what we say on the door.”Pricing has been set to compete with the coffee chains. Said Bekaert: “It’s very much a Continental experience, sitting down and having a good coffee and a quality pastry away from the fast-fast-fast food environment. It’s not about having 17 different macchiatos.”Shop unit sizes are between 1,200 and 2,000sq ft, with seating areas of between 24-70 covers, and have been developed at a cost of £200,000-£250,000 per site. Products are supplied to the shops from a central production unit in Wanstead,Bekaert was previously co-owner of Kent bakery wholesaler Bekaert & Dupont, which he sold in 2007 to focus on his then-four shop retail business.last_img read more

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In the market for… macadamias

first_imgMacadamia nuts are one of the less widely used nuts among bakers and manufacturers, which is probably why the The South African Macadamia Growers’ Association enlisted three UK artisan bakers to come up with some ideas and chivvy things along.Ian Martin, bakery consultant and production manager at Martin’s Bakery near Manchester, Paul Merry of Panary in Dorset and Peter Cook of Prices of Ludlow happily obliged, coming up with three bread recipes. The project aims to increase awareness of the nut’s taste profile, health benefits and USPs. To test the recipes in a commercial retail environment, the breads were trialled at Prices of Ludlow on every weekend throughout the month of June. They were positioned and priced in line with the bakery’s artisan bread selection.”On a weekend, the top seller from our speciality loaf selection is usually our olive and pumpkin bread,” said Peter Cook from Prices of Ludlow, which was one of Rick Stein’s Local Food Heroes and winner of the 2008 Waitrose Made in Britain Food Producer of the Year Award.”The Macadamia loaves were similarly priced and were received extremely well by consumers, who are continuing to be adventurous in their bread selections, with each variety selling between 10-18 loaves per weekend.” Consumers commented on the luxurious look, taste and texture of the bread, he added.Fruited Cornbread with MacadamiasBy Ian MartinTo make nine loaves or approximately 80-90 small rollsIngredientsFlour (strong wheat) 2kgYeast 20gSalt 40gRaw sugar 160gPolenta 800g(use in these proportions: 1g polenta to 7.5g of water, bring water to the boil and whisk in the polenta, then leave to cool before use)Macadamia nuts 500gMilk 740gJumbo Raisins 800gMethod1. Mix the flour, yeast, salt, raw sugar, polenta and milk to form a dough2. At the last stage, add the macadamias and sultanas and mix in well, so they are evenly distributed throughout the dough3. Bulk prove for two hours and, when doubled in size, scale into 450g portions4. Leave for a short intermediate proof of approximately 15 minutes5. Take each portion, flatten the dough and then fold over length-ways before rounding into a smooth ball6. Place the dough in a prover or leave in a warm, draught-free place for about 45 minutes7. Dust with flour and slash three cuts in each direction at 90 degrees8. Bake in a bread oven at 220-225°C for 25-35 minutesNote: To make small rolls, use approximately 50g portions and mould in the same way.l Next issue: Spelt, Honey and Macadamia breadlast_img read more

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Pimping mixers

first_imgNational Cupcake Week also allowed us to discover a man with an unusual bakery-related passion for pimping Hobart mixers.Follower @MixedupJake see www.mixedupjake.com/gallery.cfm takes the mixers and revamps them, with styles ranging from a Dare Devil’s Food Mixer, complete with stars and stripes, to a Shark A200 fighter mixer (pictured), complete with teeth!last_img

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Applications open for 2020 Curb & Sidewalk Reimbursement Program

first_imgHomeowner OccupiedHomeowner Occupied (In Target Areas)*All Other Google+ By Brooklyne Beatty – May 20, 2020 0 569 Facebook Pinterest Twitter Pinterest (Photo Supplied/City of South Bend) The City of South Bend is now accepting applications for those looking to make repairs to curbs, sidewalks and ADA ramps.The 2020 Curb & Sidewalk Reimbursement Program allows applicants to assist property owners with repairs, as well as add new curbs and sidewalks where there are gaps in existing connections.Anyone who is a homeowner or property owner, including businesses, within South Bend city limits can participate in the program. The reimbursement rates are listed below: Applications open for 2020 Curb & Sidewalk Reimbursement Program WhatsApp SIDEWALK$20 per linear ft.$40 per linear ft.$10 per linear ft. IndianaLocalNewsSouth Bend Market WhatsApp Facebook Google+ CURB$15 per linear ft.$30 per linear ft.$7.50 per linear ft. Twitter TAGS20/20applicationsCurb & Sidewalk Reimbursement ProgramIndianarepairreplacesidewalkSouth Bend * Includes landlords, businesses, churches, schools, etc. Maximum reimbursement amount is for 250 ft of curb and sidewalk combined.To participate, residents must first fill out an application and receive pre-approval from the City. You can download the application by clicking here or call 311.In 2019, 65 residential properties participated in the program, replacing 4,396 feet of sidewalk and 1,523 feet of curbing. ADA RAMP$950 per ramp$950 per ramp$950 per ramp Previous articleIndiana reports initial cases of coronavirus-related illness affecting childrenNext articleTodd Rokita enters GOP race for Indiana Attorney General nomination Brooklyne Beattylast_img read more

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Elkhart police searching for suspect who robbed Meijer gas station

first_img Google+ Google+ WhatsApp By Jon Zimney – August 29, 2020 1 508 Facebook WhatsApp Elkhart police searching for suspect who robbed Meijer gas station IndianaLocalNews (Photo supplied/Elkhart Truth) Elkhart police are looking for the person who held up a gas station.A man robbed the Meijer gas station on Elkhart Road just after 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 27.Police say he jumped over the counter, causing the cash register to fall to the floor. He grabbed some money and then ran away.The suspect was described by police as black and was wearing a black hoodie, jeans, black shoes, and a dark gray backpack.Anybody with information is asked to contact the Elkhart Police Department. Pinterest Pinterest Twitter Twitter Facebook Previous articleNotre Dame distances University from Lou Holtz’s comments at RNCNext articleI.U. orders eights fraternities, sororities into quarantine 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

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