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Archives for: April 21, 2021

CSR watch

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first_imgThe Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) is to extend its collaboration with corporate giants. It will help them assess greenhouse gas emissions and create a single standardised approach for climate change information throughout their supply chains.It aims to help customers and suppliers work together to develop strategies to reduce their carbon footprints.Tesco and Unilever joined the CDP Supply Chain Leadership Collaboration (SCLC) last October and PepsiCo is among the latest batch of large companies to join its ranks. Each SCLC member has selected up to 50 suppliers to work with them on a pilot project, which will refine the process before it is rolled out in May. Tesco chief executive Sir Terry Leahy said the CDP initiative had “a simple aim to bring together major retailers and key brands, so that we can understand, report and reduce carbon emissions within the supply chain”. He added: “I very much hope that firms who supply us and our competitors will consider being part of this venture.”Ian Midgley, senior vice-president supply chain for Unilever, said the firm had been tackling the impact of its own operations on the environment for some time. But he added: “We want to continue to develop our understanding of greenhouse gas management across our supply chain. Collaboration with the CDP and other firms with similar aims should accelerate learning and leverage expertise in this area.”last_img read more

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Dawn strikes major deal with Subway

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first_imgCooked and fermented meat supplier Dawn Farm Foods has announced a seven year contract, worth E700m (£631m), to supply Subway’s franchise in Europe.Subway currently has 1,485 outlets in the UK and Ireland and a further 1,400 across Continental Europe. Dawn Foods chief executive Larry Murrin said it was a significant deal for the firm, which follows major investment in its manufacturing base, supported by Enterprise Ireland.”Subway has ambitious growth plans for store openings across Europe and, with hard work on both sides, this deal will translate into hundreds of millions of euros in export sales for Ireland over the duration of the seven-year contract,” said Murrin.Mike Attwood, purchasing director of EPIC (the purchasing arm of the Subway sandwich chain), said: “We know Dawn Farms well and we have worked closely together to come up with a deal that makes sense for our franchisees and gives certainty to the supply side of our business as we continue our drive for growth across Europe.”last_img read more

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Aryzta predicts calmer waters in the UK

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first_imgSpeciality bakery business Aryzta believes a sales decline in Ireland and the UK is stabilising.In its financial results for the first six months, ended 31 January 2011, the Swiss-based group reported that while revenue grew by 9.7% to €585.3m in its Food Europe division, with acquisition contribution of 7.3%, underlying revenue fell 0.9%. EBITA grew 8.7% to €66m. The company said: “There is evidence of market stabilisation… challenges still remain in these markets. In continental Europe, there is a return to growth, particularly in the independent segment of bakeries, boulangeries and independent restaurants.” Food North America revenues grew by 140% to €610.5m, while the Rest of World revenues grew by 591% to €87.4m. Group revenue increased by 36% to €1.89bn and group EBITA rose 52% to €173.1m. CEO Owen Killian said: “While the major feature of these results is the enormous contribution from our recently acquired businesses, we are most encouraged by the improvement in underlying revenue growth as consumers adjust to improving economic circumstances in most markets.” He added: “The speed and severity of food raw material price increases was unexpected and is again a major focus in the business.”>>Aryzta sees revenues fall in UK and Irelandlast_img read more

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Spilling the blended beans

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first_imgMarketers and packaging designers at the ready! If you’re currently making anything resembling a “luxury Belgian chocolate cake”, then be prepared for the latest European labelling edict, which could give birth to a whole new cake category: the “luxury Belgian-chocolate-cake-manufactured-using-cacao-blended-from-multiple-origins-including-Ghana-Indonsesia-Togo-basically-wherever-we-can-get” it.The wheels were set in motion to change the way country origins are labelled following a European Parliament (EP) Environment Committee vote on 19 April, which would make life hellish for cake manufacturers specifying Swiss or Belgian chocolate on labels.The impact of the vote in favour of applying Country of Origin Labelling (COOL) to the ingredients of specified origin chocolate such as Swiss and Belgian means they would also have to declare the source of the cacao bean. The issue’s slow transit through European bureaucracy means we will have to wait until a final decision is made by the European Council in the autumn.If it goes ahead, the Food & Drink Federation (FDF) says the proposal is unworkable and admits that, while lobbying continues in the hope of urging the European Council to consider labelling of products on a case-by-case basis, the signs are “ominous”.”All chocolate products, including coatings for biscuits and chocolate chips in biscuits, if labelled as being of specific origin, will need to comply with the COOL provisions,” says Martin Turton, manager of the Biscuit, Cake, Chocolate & Confectionery sector group at the FDF. “This proposal breaks customary practice of many years whereby the term Belgian or Swiss as applied to chocolate is understood to refer to the place of production. Applying COOL to ingredients of chocolate is unworkable as they are sourced globally.”Simon Harris, of Belgian chocolate supplier Barry Callebaut, says the proposals would be a “nightmare” because its main brands use a blend of beans from more than one country of origin. “That will make a very interesting problem because most [of the chocolate used in bakery products] is blended. Just about every other chocolate manufacturer blends as well, otherwise it would be called a ’pure origin’ chocolate and labelled as such.”So could this signal a move away from denoting ’Belgian’ towards the bean’s country of origins? “’Belgian chocolate’ has an affirmation of quality that rightly or wrongly exists,” he explains. “Pure origins are a selling point because you are experiencing a flavour that is typical of the country. On the other hand, there is a very good argument for blends on the basis that you are refining the taste to a preferred flavour as opposed to taking what you can get.”A more immediate problem is the price of cacao, which rose from $2,874.93 per tonne in September 2010 to $3,134.37 last month although this is down from a high of $3,472.27 in February.Bakers are increasingly looking for efficient cost-in-use of ingredients. “For example, our range of deZaan brand cocoa powders have rich cocoa flavours and deep colours so that customers can obtain an optimal taste and colour profile for their products while using less powder,” says Simon Godden of ADM. “Another way we can help customers save money is with Cocoa Butter Equivalents (CBEs), which are used to reduce the ingredient costs of chocolate formulations.”Cost-cutting solutions have come from some unlikely sources. Malt supplier Muntons recently developed a malt-based product that can be used as a partial substitute for cocoa in cakes, muffins and brownies. “There is a train of thought that suggests that these recipe changes may well be adopted for the foreseeable future,” says the firm’s Andy Janes. “The incorporation of Maltichoc, for example in brownies, has been found to have unexpected benefits such as improvements in mouth-feel and increased humectancy that is believed to be helping shelf life.”Meanwhile, hard-pressed consumers are looking for small, inexpensive, indulgent treats, says Harris: “As such, the world of chocolate decorations has exploded, probably driven by things like cupcakes.” Graham Dunton, of Unifine, which distributes Dobla chocolate decorations, concurs that the quality and range of decorations those with a handmade look has improved dramatically.last_img read more

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In Short

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first_imgBrown Batch released Allied Bakeries has revamped its Allinson brand and launched a new Brown Batch loaf, “with the taste of sourdough”, to mark the occasion. The relaunch, which includes a new look and marketing campaign, aims to recapture some of the original heritage and character of the 120-year-old bread brand.Late opening blockedPlans by the owners of Clervaux Café and bakery, in Darlington to open the shop until 11pm every night have been met with objections from local residents, according to The Northern Echo. Seven have written to the local council with worries over noise and safety.Old-style inspirationGraham’s Bakery in Epworth, Doncaster, has started baking cakes using a 1902 recipe book, discovered during a recent renovation. Co-owner Pete Gunson is making one cake a month from The Big Book of Cakes and plans to print recipe cards for customers.Facility upgradeBarry Callebaut is to invest nearly CHF25m (approximately £18.24m), to upgrade and expand its facilities following the divestment of its European consumer business. It is hoped the investment will enable it to further strengthen its footprint in Western Europe. The firm is also upgrading its chocolate factory in Banbury.last_img read more

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Lees posts sales boost, warns on costs

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first_imgLees Foods this morning predicted its full year pre-tax profit will be ahead of expectations – despite the rising cost of raw materials.The group, which owns confectionery manufacturer Lees of Scotland and Waverley Bakery, reported that sales had increased by 6% in the six months to 30 June, up from £9.6m to £10.2m. Gross profit increased by 5% to £3.4m.However, the company saw its adjusted pre-tax profit fall from £564,000 to £505,000 as a result of soaring material costs – mainly sugar – which Lees said had been “caused by the ongoing shortage of supply in Europe”.Clive Miquel, chief executive of Lees, said: “We are very pleased with the results for the first half of this year especially the increase in sales to our key customers. Lees of Scotland has shown good growth over the period, across most product categories. The Waverley Bakery achieved new listings which would have resulted in this business being well ahead of last year, had it not been for very poor weather in May and June which adversely affected ice cream cone and wafer sales.’’He added: “Pre-tax profit is down on the same period last year, predominantly as a result of raw material costs. As previously reported, there has been a natural time lag in the process to mitigate the impact of these increases. However, the steps we took to address this issue earlier in the year have been successful.”And Miquel confirmed the company was pressing ahead with new product development. “The management team at Lees will continue to focus on new product development and our stated objective of moving into new product categories, in order to maintain the growth we have achieved over recent years,” he said.last_img read more

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Press release: PM meeting with Prime Minister Mark Rutte: 3 July 2018

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first_img This afternoon, the Prime Minister met Prime Minister Mark Rutte of the Netherlands for a working lunch at the Catshuis in the Hague. The Prime Minister began by welcoming the closeness and warmth of our relationship with the Netherlands, and the importance of our trading relationship and close cooperation on matters of internal security and foreign policy. The Prime Ministers welcomed today’s announcement of the State Visit of Their Majesties King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima of the Netherlands to the UK in October 2018, recognising that the visit would be an opportunity to celebrate the historic ties between our two Royal families and reflect our cultural and social ties. In light of recent challenges to the international rules based system, the Prime Minister thanked Prime Minister Rutte for his support in holding those responsible to account following the attack in Salisbury. The Prime Ministers recognised the Conference as an important victory for the prohibition of the use of chemical weapons. The Prime Minister also reiterated the UK’s continuing support for the Netherlands in their effort to deliver justice for all those who died in the MH17 tragedy. The Prime Minister then made the case for an ambitious economic and security partnership with the European Union. She and Prime Minister Rutte discussed the importance of ensuring that trade between the Netherlands and the UK remained as frictionless as possible following the UK’s exit from the EU. In the spirit of maintaining close ties between the people of the UK and the Netherlands, both leaders welcomed the launch of the London-Rotterdam-Amsterdam Eurostar service. A Downing Street Spokesperson said:last_img read more

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Press release: Greater Manchester’s first smart motorway is fully-operational

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first_imgThe technology went live on Tuesday 31 July 2018 on the final M60 section between junction 10 and junction 18, meaning that the whole of the motorway between junction 8 of the M60 at Sale and junction 20 of the M62 at Rochdale is fully-operational.As well as an extra running lane in each direction along the M62 between junction 18 and junction 20, intensive extra technology, such as CCTV cameras and electronic signs, has been provided along both M60 and M62 sections. Variable mandatory speed limits are guiding traffic along the motorway at steady speeds – tackling congestion and frustrating stop-start driving conditions.Highways England senior project manager Jonathan Stokes, said: The removal of narrow lanes and completion of the project now paves the way for key sections of the M60 to be resurfaced – with the programme of overnight resurfacing and bridge maintenance set to begin later this month.This is part of Highways England’s £100 million investment in maintenance work across the North West. The resurfacing will reduce the need for further maintenance, meaning less disruption in the long run. All work is taking place at night to minimise disruption to drivers.The first phase of this work will begin later this month and involves resurfacing between junctions 15 and 12 and between junctions 10 and 12. Some overnight closures will be required. Further details on remaining work will be publicised nearer the time.Four more smart motorway improvements – worth £500 million and delivering 90 miles of extra lanes to the local motorway network – are also due to be constructed during the next few years. The first of these – the M62 junction 10 to junction 12 project which will link the M6 near Warrington to the M60 near Eccles – is due to start later this month while M56 (junctions 6 to 8), M6 (junctions 21a to 26) and M62 (junctions 20 to 25) schemes are also planned.With the first smart motorway in the North West now in operation drivers are being encouraged to think about how to make the best of the new system with guidance available.General enquiriesMembers of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.Media enquiriesJournalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer. Going ‘live’ this week marks the most significant milestone for this project. We would like to thank users of the M60 and M62 and people living around them for their patience and support over the last few years while we have worked to deliver this vital investment in what is an almost uniquely complex environment. Although this is the first smart motorway in the North West the system has been running successfully in other parts of the country for several years – including around Leeds – and we’re confident it will deliver safer, smoother and more reliable journeys.last_img read more

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Press release: Dutch Royals welcomed to London for their first state visit

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first_imgFor journalists @RoyalFamily and @KoninklijkHuis The Queen greets King Willem-Alexander as he arrives in Horseguards Parade. Email [email protected] The King and Queen of the Netherlands on board the aboard the Dutch ship HNLMS Zeeland watching the joint naval display on the Thames.Their Majesties will also visit Pop Brixton, a pioneering space in South London that supports independent businesses from Brixton and Lambeth, and meet with Prime Minister Theresa May in Downing Street on Wednesday (24 October). Our forces have worked closely with the Netherlands amphibious forces for more than 45 years, demonstrating world-class military integration. Right now, our Royal Marines are working alongside their Dutch counterparts in Norway as part of the Defence Arctic Strategy, which shows our deep-shared commitment to European security. This state visit allows us to take stock and celebrate an enduring alliance with one of our closest defence partners. Other state visit press releases Follow the Foreign Office on Twitter @foreignoffice and Facebook Follow the Foreign Office on Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn State visit on social media Media enquiries Prime Minister hails new era of Dutch-UK security cooperation post-Brexit UK-Dutch trade relationship goes from strength to strength Royal Marines to stage demonstration on the Thames for Netherlands state visitcenter_img The visit will showcase the breadth and depth of the relationship between the UK and The Netherlands, including through trade, innovation and security.The state visit is an excellent opportunity to celebrate and deepen our connections. Our relationship may be changing but we are confident that the Netherlands and the UK will continue to have a close relationship and work together to tackle global issues.The UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt will also use the opportunity to meet with his Dutch counterpart Stef Blok.Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said: Queen Máxima and the Earl of Wessex viewing a robot demonstration at the Innovation Showcase.As part of the state visit Their Majesties will visit HMS Belfast and the visiting Dutch Offshore Patrol Vessel, HNLMS Zeeland, moored alongside. This visit will celebrate 45 years of cooperation between the Royal Netherlands Marine Corps and the Royal Marines, culminating with a joint on-water capability demonstration on the Thames.The Royal Marines and Royal Netherlands Marines have long served together on operations across the globe – most recently offering humanitarian support to islands affected by Hurricane Irma in the Caribbean.Speaking ahead of the visit to HMS Belfast, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said: King Willem-Alexander meeting people during the visit to Pop Brixton.Updates The Dutch state visit is an opportunity to celebrate the UK and the Netherlands’ more than 400-year long trading heritage. As the UK forges an independent trade policy for the first time in more than four decades, my international economic department is working with the Dutch – our North Sea Partners – towards a bright trading future too. The Innovation Showcase will demonstrate the huge opportunities for our economies – 2 of the world’s most innovative – to collaborate even further, creating jobs and prosperity for generations to come. The UK and The Netherlands have a rich, long history between our people and of course our Royal Families. So it is a pleasure to welcome His Majesty King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima to the United Kingdom, reflecting our enduring commitment to this partnership. Together we work to further peace and security across the globe, tackling threats from terrorism and cyber and promoting values of freedom. I look forward to celebrating our connections and shared successes with Foreign Minister Stef Blok, looking at ensuring this continues for years to come. hashtag #NetherlandsStateVisit Watch an overview of the Netherlands state visitNetherlands state visitFurther information @ForeignOffice and @UKinNL From the 17th century to the present day, trade relations between our countries continue to flourish; The Netherlands is the UK’s third largest trading partner. Only this year, Heineken announced an investment of £44 million – creating over 1,000 jobs in the UK – while fellow Dutch company NewCold has invested £100 million in a new distribution centre in Wakefield, adding a further 70 jobs in the next 2 years to the current team of 200.DIT Minister for Investment Graham Stuart and Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Europe, Andrew Mitchell, will be hosting the UK-Netherlands Innovation Showcase at Mansion House on Wednesday. As world leaders in Global Innovation, the showcase will celebrate Dutch and British collaboration in finding innovative solutions for the Grand Challenges of tomorrow, including clean growth, solutions for the aging society, AI and data and the future of mobility.International Trade Secretary Liam Fox said:last_img read more

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Press release: PM bilateral with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon: 3 December 2018

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first_imgA Downing Street spokesperson said: This afternoon Prime Minister Theresa May met with Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon where they discussed the latest in the UK’s exit from the European Union. The Prime Minister spoke about the support she has received from fishermen, farmers and business leaders – like Sir Ian Wood – who back the deal as it gives them the clarity and certainty they need to protect jobs and living standards. The Prime Minister urged the First Minister to listen to these voices in their support of the deal as opposed to risking a no-deal Brexit or going back to square one of negotiations.last_img

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