ADM Cocoa (Koog aan de Zaan, the Netherlands) has launched a new bright red cocoa powder, De Zaan D-11-ZR. The ingredient is made from selected cocoa beans and imparts a brilliant colour and well-balanced flavour in dairy, ice cream, bakery, cereal and confectionery products, says the company.The first in a new range of bright cocoa powders, it provides a distinctive, vivid colour with intense crimson tones, claims the company. D-11-ZR is suitable for premium baked goods, such as cakes, and confectionery.
Whitco Catering and Bakery Equipment (stand C76) will introduce its new stainless steel finish display counters. These complement the red, green, gold and wood finish models in the range. Counters can be either stand-alone or multiplexed, with three types of glass and shelf configurations to suit bakery, sandwich bar or deli applications. Refrigeration options comprise static or fan assisted, while sliding glass doors are also an option, says the company. It will also be exhibiting a stainless steel coffee station, with espresso machine, grinder, knock-out drawer, a refrigerated bottle fridge and sandwich make-up table.
The Gem display cabinet from Williams Refrigeration (King’s Lynn, Norfolk) is designed to store chilled products, such as sandwiches, salads, fruit and drinks. The company says it is easy to clean, energy saving, reliable and safe. The unit features a full-width fluorescent light and tempered glass sides for maximum product visibility. Four adjustable shelves cater for all sizes of product and detachable ticket strips can be used to describe foods and list prices. The Gem Multi-Deck range comes in four sizes, from 960 to 1810mm in length and in a range of finishes. Another new product from Williams is a space-saving salad counter. This has a work-surface and wells fitted into the top to hold ingredients. The company has also launched modular blast chillers, with improved fans and a faster defrost facility, as well as energy-efficient refrigeration controllers.
Apuro’s (Solihull, West Midlands) gastronorm compatible matching refrigerator and freezer cabinets are marketed under the Atlanta brand. They come in single- and double-door versions. Both the fridges and freezers have ventilated cooling, a built-in evaporator and a wipe-clean highly polished stainless steel finish. All models have self-closing lockable doors to ensure security and minimise temperature fluctuations and their ergonomic design includes an integral, easy-open handle. To further improve energy consumption the fridges and freezers have an automatic defrost and an electronic thermostat. All the internal surfaces, including the shelves, are ‘wipe-clean’, with rounded corners to eliminate dirt traps. Lockable fitted castors aid manoeuvrability for cleaning and maintenance.The single door AT650TN refrigerator has a capacity of 630 litres and a power consumption of 4.7kWh per day. The larger double door AT1410TN refrigerator has a capacity of 1,340 litres with a power consumption of 5.4kWh per day. Both have a working temperature range of –2ºC to +8ºC.The matching freezers have a working temperature of between –15ºC and –25ºC. The smaller AT650BT (630 litres capacity) has a power consumption of 9kWh/ day. The double-door AT1410 (1,340 litres capacity) has a power consumption of 9.6kWh/day.
Most bakers say they have yet to see bills decrease despite the price of gas falling this month.The price of natural gas through September was 26p a therm. But on October 3 this dropped to -5p a therm as traders were caught off guard by the opening of the £5.5bn Langeled pipeline from Norway to Yorkshire, which flooded the market with gas.Scottish Association of Master Bakers’s chief executive, Kirk Hunter, said many bakers are locked into contracts so if the price of gas goes down they will not feel the benefits. He said: “Energy costs are one of the largest costs next to labour that bakers face and the increases over the last year have been nothing short of horrendous. The industry will be looking to gas suppliers to cut prices. We want to see companies moving quicker to reduce costs.”The price of gas for delivery in January has fallen 6%. However, Ofgem has warned that it usually takes around nine months for cuts to be felt by the customer, despite 80% price increases occurring over the last three years.See next issue of British Baker for News Analysis.
The new range of ETI ThermaData loggers are designed for use in a wide range of environments – from chill cabinets to refrigerated lorries.The waterproof ThermaData loggers offer improved performance over previous low-cost data-loggers by providing 0.5°C accuracy, up to 4,000 temperature readings and high/low digital LED alarms.The alarms offer the user visual verification that temperatures have not exceeded the user-defined limits during transportation or storage.
There is a lot happening in this week’s issue, bread weights deregulation, which looked to be on hold, has suddenly been the victim of a coup d’état. So sometime next year, we should see a virtual free-for-all, specifically on wrapped bread and possibly unwrapped (pg 4).It is news that will delight most of the supermarkets and some plant bakers – but definitely not others. Most have refrained from speaking publicly on the issue, but privately they know that it will cause some havoc and plenty of discussion.While millers will be concerned that a range of smaller loaves might mean less flour sold, bakers and retailers will be concerned that more air and water may make loaves look larger than they should, meaning prices will not reflect true content – and so it goes on.It was a topic discussed at the recent Federation of Bakers conference – before news of the deregulation came through (pg 16). But nothing is likely to happen before 2008, so there’s still time for reflection.Also this week, Patak’s seems a perfect fit for ABF (pg 5). And at the Scottish Conference at Peebles, I learned that the next increase in the minimum wage in October has been limited to 3.2%, with quite a bit of credit for the limit going to Low Pay Commission representative and past president of the SAMB Ian Hay.The SAMB also reported that it had seen a rise in employment queries about age discrimination, so I hope that our article this week, Age Aware (pg 14) proves timely.Meanwhile, the UK’s branded coffee shop market is continuing to expand significantly (pg 8) with Starbucks leading the growth. It is all about branding and ambience, but bakers can do just as well with the right offering in the right place. On page 21, we look at how even opening a small in-store coffee shop can really boost your business. And the bakery offering in many coffee shops is nowhere as good as in a baker’s shop, although the cakes and biscuits are usually imaginative.No, it’s mainly the coffee and ambience that is the draw. So if you go ahead, give the coffee equal importance and give your shopfitter a brief to visit all the coffee shop chains. Bakers can do it better!
British Bakels MD Paul Morrow has been promoted to the two-strong executive committee that runs the Bakels group worldwide.The group comprises 35 Bakels companies spread over five continents and 30 countries employing over 2,000 people.Morrow will continue to report to executive chairman Armin Ulrich, who is based in Switzerland, while he takes over responsibility for growing the Bakels business worldwide.Morrow told British Baker: “The transition to the new role will take place later in 2008 and in that period we will appoint a new MD to take over my role in the UK.”Although much travel will be involved, Morrow will continue to be based in the UK, moving into new offices at the existing British Bakels HQ in Bicester.He said: “The UK industry gives you the experience of running an operating company in probably the most competitive bakery market in the world. If you make money successfully in the UK, you are world-class. I will stand firmly on the success of our UK business, where we have built successfully on our strong craft foundations. We can apply many of the lessons we have learned to the rest of the group. For example, European supermarkets now have a global presence.”Morrow added: “I have been at the helm of British Bakels for 14 years and am looking forward immensely to this new challenge. We must be in harmony with the markets we serve.”
Bakers are among businesses in Chesterfield being urged to take part in an initiative to get locally sourced, high-quality food served at a hospital in the Derbyshire town.The Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is teaming up with the Food and Drink Forum – a not-for-profit organisation based in the East Midlands – to appeal to local producers at an event on March 18th at the Coney Green Business Centre in Clay Cross.Later this year, the trust plans to open a new catering outlet in the main entrance to the hospital as part of a wider redevelopment project. The facility will offer healthy breakfasts, lunch and evening meals using locally produced bread, sandwiches, fruit, vegetables, meats, dairy produce and ready meals.Susan Tate, the Food and Drink Forum’s public sector food procurement initiative coordinator, said: “It is very good for local producers and the local economy in general when an organisation like a hospital has a strong commitment to local sourcing.”
South African branded food and healthcare company Tiger Brands is to buy consumer chocolate manufacturer Chococam. Tiger Brands intend to acquire 74.7% of Cameroon based Chococam from cocoa and chocolate product manufacturer, Barry Callebaut, with the remainder of the shares being held by a number of small private shareholders. The planned acquisition of shares would mean Tiger Brands would take over the entire business including employees. Chococam employs around 300 people and has annual sales of approximately CFA 18 billion (28 million euro/CHF 45 million).“This acquisition gives impetus to our strategy to expand our African footprint,” said Peter Matlare, chief executive officer of Tiger Brands. “We are delighted that we will have a presence in Cameroon as there is enormous growth potential in this market.”“We will remain present in Cameroon through our subsidiary SIC Cacaos in which we have just made important investment,” said Patrick De Maeseneire, chief executive officer of Barry Callebaut. “Our strategic focus in Africa is on cocoa bean sourcing and cocoa processing and not on consumer chocolate. That is why we have decided to divest the last one of our consumer activities, after having sold our consumer businesses in Senegal and Ivory Coast already.” The deal is expected to complete on 31 July 2008.