first_imgThis year should see record returns for plant bakers. As good news stories go, that is not a bad one to kick off the New Year. And it is all down to confident pricing on branded sliced loaves, says a leading city analyst. A better understanding of consumer trends is driving competition where price was once king. Meanwhile, the gains from premiumisation of the market have yet to be fully mined. In fact, a “fundamental change in plant baking economics” is underway, no less.These are the views of industry expert David Lang of city analysts Investec, who believes a completely new plant baking business model is being created. “Ten years ago, most plant bakers had to run flat out to eke a profit. A few sacks a week were often the difference between a profit and a loss,” he says.But the upturn in baking and retail has seen UK bread value nearly treble profitability from a decade ago. Mr Lang says a distinct shift from a commodity mindset towards a marketing one has brought a fundamental shift in the economies of plant baking. Looking ahead, he predicts that over the next 10 years plant baking should see a continuation of price rises, improvements in quality, with production becoming more flexible, and deep-rooted shortcomings in the distribution chain overcome.Changing demographicsAnd the demographic tectonic plates will continue to move, shaking up how plant bakers approach their product portfolio. Increasingly, consumers are trading up – a forecast that is set to continue for at least the next five years, according to futurologists. An increase in the number of affluent shoppers will be mirrored by a corresponding decline at the middle and bottom end of the scale.While this may be good news for premium brands and speciality lines, private label is likely to fall further behind. UK prices remain among the cheapest in Europe, notes Mr Lang, but premium-branded innovations will continue to drive up prices. “The move is away from the old manic, capacity driven, price-obsessed, flour-dominated, commodity game, towards something much more closely aligned to the rest of consumer goods civilisation,” comments Mr Lang. “For private label, Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference could point to a possible premium way forward. But big questions are begged about the down-at-heel standard product. Improved quality and ‘reassuringly expensive’ looks the only way forward, particularly as below-cost supply has been nuked.”He cites the wrapped ‘bakery occasions’ snacking market as providing opportunities for incremental sales for plant bakers. This category includes traditional and continental breakfast items, cakes and fruited snacks, and is valued at £677m, with growth of 7.3% (AC Nielsen Scantrack, 52w/e July 2005). Unlike the closely related £209m rolls and baps category (up 5.5% in value year-on-year), where the big brands have a representative presence, bakery occasions supply is splintered, he comments. “Some areas like fruited snacks, and crumpets are getting increased attention. In others, like speciality breads, the brands struggle to stretch with consumers demanding authenticity. Look at Poilåne French Country Bread, shipped from Paris. It’s flying off Waitrose’s shelves at £4.99 a kilo.”Developing ‘parallel’ brands could provide one solution for plant bakers to break into niche markets, best illustrated by Cadbury’s acquisition of organic chocolate brand Green & Black’s in early 2005. But greater activity from the major bakery players is inevitable, says Mr Lang. “The bakery occasions opportunity is too big for the majors to miss, particularly as it’s in line with premium, luxury and lifestyle trends.“When people get richer they don’t eat more, they eat better – market growth becomes all about premiumisation,” explains Mr Lang. “Consumer branding and customer management are becoming paramount, with efficient, high-quality production and service.” Interestingly, he speculates that the trade up could ultimately be at the expense of the multiples, with people more inclined to seek out specialists and small independents. As consumers get richer, the supermarket share of growth declines, he says – a shift that would benefit local shops, petrol stations and railway station concourses. Because of this possible fragmentation of the retail trade, a 40-year bakery consolidation trend could be halted as bread is baked closer to market.But the retail trade has played a key role in squeezing out value bread and backing the brands, he adds. “My rough calculations suggest supermarket bread operating margins of approaching 20%, and that’s despite a break-even situation in private label. So the bread department’s been restored to rude health.”Although promotion still plays too big a part in the industry’s marketing mix, long-term brand-building investment and media spend is on the up. “Moreover, managements – particularly British Bakeries’ – have felt confident enough to take pricing on to an entirely new plane. An already yawning price gap between branded and private label has been stretched beyond breaking point, and still sales are shifting to the brands. Consumers seem to want the reassurance that premium pricing brings.”However, improvements still need to be made with the supply chain, he observes. “Quality doesn’t just mean good ingredients and bread baked by proper bakers; it means freshness too,” says Mr Lang. “Shorter delivery lead times, with fresher bread and improved service levels, requires a less extended and more flexible supply chain”. “Distribution can run at more than 10p a loaf and it’s often massively inefficient. Ultimately, we could see more smaller, strategically placed units, making a broader range of fresher products delivered through the day.” Over £300m of cost could be at stake – a figure that is rising with increasing energy costs and regulation, he says. Flour costsPlant baking is also seeing a change from being production driven to marketing led. But the future cost of flour could emerge as an issue, says Mr Lang. “The last decade has been a doddle for flour buyers. Prices have fallen sharply, with partial recovery relatively gentle. “Looking ahead, life could become a lot more dangerous. Up for grabs are the last vestiges of European agricultural export subsidies. If they don’t go in 2007/8 then they’ll come under even greater attack afterwards. Their demise seems inevitable.”Consequently, the long-term future for UK millers is uncertain. “The huge increase in UK wheat production since Common Market entry is already showing signs of faltering,” says Mr Lang. “By 2008/9 flour millers could struggle to find adequate domestic supply. Millers could start to see much more volatile grist costs. For some, the experience could be terminal.”So, how will the plant baking landscape look in 2015, and will the ‘Big Three’ – British Bakeries, Allied Bakeries and Warburtons – still dominate? “There is no question that three overlapping brands plus own-brand is too complicated for the chains,” says Mr Lang. “Waitrose could be pointing the way with its British Bakeries/Warburtons duopoly experiment.”British Bakeries has been “fearless” in its price leadership, although it has been investing a lot less than its peers, Mr Lang comments. Meanwhile, Allied’s new CEO Brian Robinson, could be the fillip that Allied needs, he adds.Warburtons’ advantageFor the eventual winner, however, some pundits find it hard to look further than Warburtons. “Having ownership and management in the same hands is a priceless advantage,” he says. It could also be strengthened by expansion into new regions. “With Warburtons opening up in Wales next year and establishing a bridgehead to attack British Bakeries’ west country citadel, the battle for the south of England is going to hot up.”But the fight will not just involve the Big Three, he says. “Harry Kear plans to re-establish the Rathbones brand. His lock-in with Morrisons could provide a strong expansion base and history says you under-estimate him at your peril.” The same goes for Brace’s, he observes. “It’s got brilliant Welsh credentials and is already eating into the south west.” Moreover, with Rathbone Kear back on an even keel, and with a miniaturised Harvestime likely to follow, higher returns are expected across the trade, and in particular Allied, he comments.Mr Lang’s working title for the talk he gave at British Baker’s Baking Industry Summit was ‘Pimp My Loaf’ – a reference to the TV programme Pimp My Ride, in which clapped out cars are transformed with a radical makeover. It is a sage analogy for an industry already on the right road.last_img read more

first_imgSales of WeightWatchers cakes grew by 38.1% in the year to July 2005, according to TNS figures, says Anthony Alan Foods (Barnsley, Yorkshire), which supplies the cakes under licence. UK sales director Mark Rooza says: “NPD is at the heart of the sales success. We’ve developed techniques to produce what health-conscious consumers want: cakes that are as good as the best, but are lower in fat and lower in calories.”Growth in the healthy cake category is in stark contrast to the total cake category, he adds.“The total cake market only grew by 3.9% last year. Our figures suggest manufacturers that adapt to the market’s demands can generate new business. Consumers want cakes, but they want them to be healthier.”Total sales for low-fat cakes also bucked the trend, growing by 11.4% last year. However, the WeightWatchers brand is growing rapidly – over half the low-fat cakes purchased in the year to July 17, 2005, were Weight Watchers, compared to less than one-third two years ago.last_img read more

first_imgInter Link Foods and Finsbury Food Group, both reveal they are on missions to improve efficiency in their business this week. The two companies are profitable, but say trading conditions are “challenging” in the cake market. They say they want to control costs – read “reduce prices”. Inter Link may be the UK’s second biggest cake company, but chief executive, Paul Griffiths, talks about “toughing it out”. He is quite right, competition is cut-throat in the cake aisles of the supermarkets – particularly at the cheap end. For example, a kind-hearted colleague came back after lunch recently, loaded with two boxed chocolate cakes bought for 49p each. The manufacturer of said delicacies shall remain anonymous, but it was neither of the ones mentioned above.Needless to say, there was much tucking in, after which the general consensus was that the cakes tasted of sweetened cardboard, not such a bargain (thanks anyway!) But I am sure the supermarket buyer was thrilled by this taste of really cheap cake. And a new price precedent has been set. It’s traditional to blame the supermarkets for this sort of thing, but who exactly is offering the generous special offers in the first place? An individual supplier may strike a listing on the back of a cut–price bargain, but in the longer term everyone’s business is devalued, everyone is put under more pressure – particularly smaller suppliers. Is anyone going to back down on reducing prices, or has duffing each other up become too much of a habit for the cake suppliers? We have seen where that road leads on economy bread. Also in the news this week, Gb Ingredients has revealed (pg 5) that its business is to be split, confirming rumours which have been circulating since the Dutch investment house Gilde acquired it from DSM last July.It’s a move which will bring a large new entrant, Werhahn, into play as a bakery ingredients supplier in the UK – trading as GB Plange UK. It will be interesting to see how its arrival changes the status quo.And the yeast side of Gb is also set on growth across Europe, probably through acquisition. Exciting times for both sides, who said breaking up was hard to do?last_img read more

first_imgEntries received so far for the 2006 World Scotch Pie Championship suggest the event could be a record breaker, beating the 350 entries received last year.The awards ceremony will be held during Scotch Pie Week, which runs from 25 November to 2 December. Bakers throughout Scotland are being asked to raise funds for The Scottish Society for Autism, a charity supported by TV personalities Lorraine Kelly and Richard Park.Piemen are being encouraged to organise in-store competitions, create exciting window displays and involve local schools.Alan Stuart, the Buckhaven-based founder and organiser of the event, said: “The Scotch pie is Scotland’s original takeaway and is produced with the finest Scotch beef and lamb.”last_img read more

first_imgAfter we broke the news last week of another impending rise in the price of flour many of you have remarked that both British and Canadian wheat harvests were very good, therefore it is hard to believe that other factors would have such an adverse effect on prices.So this week Alex Waugh, director of the National Association of British and Irish Millers, explains precisely why those other factors, ’world events’, are having such a dramatic impact (pg 18). The graphs summarise the situation and show why bread prices simply must rise as a result.There is no way plant bakers, craft bakers or biscuit-makers can swallow the price rises. That is why it is so vital to continue communicating the reasons for the rise through the national media.Every single craft customer and supermarket shopper should know why they have to pay more – again. We have seen in the past that consumers accept a repeat increase on coffee and fuel. This time it is the turn of bread.Elsewhere we report on how Britain’s three biggest high street bakery retailers are having to re-jig their offering or remodel their business plans. Why? Because high street trading conditions demand it (pgs 14, 15). Lyndale and Three Cooks have taken a hard look at their trading plans and shops, while Greggs, though still seeing improved profits, has seen margins drop. Hot summers can wreak havoc on hot takeaway but coffee shops and sandwich chains such as Amano and FooGo continue to proliferate (pgs 4,5).Pasty outlets are popping up everywhere too (pg 25). In just three years, sales of pasties, as a percentage of total pastry snacks, have risen from 21.6% to 28.1%. London, not Cornwall, is where most of the pasty outlets are based, but Proper Cornish’s account manager says optimistically: “There are still lots of places in Britain that don’t have them.”Pasties are a very traditional Cornish product and, like the Melton Mowbray pork pie, are guarding their origins carefully. Tradition with a modern twist is a great seller, just look at the design of up-to-date pasty outlets. But tradition alone is not good enough – a point firmly made by our Friday essayist this week (pg 13). Do you agree?last_img read more

first_imgI am writing to support John Gillespie’s idea, outlined in a recent issue of British Baker, for an industry that speaks with one voice.The National Association of Master Bakers, which is the association for craft bakers in England and Wales, would be delighted to give its backing.There are currently various sectors of the baking industry going off at a tangent with no strategy or coordination, so yes, it is time to get moving on a new coordinating council.The suggestion of Campden & Chorleywood Food Research Association as an Academy Centre for Baking (letters, British Baker July 13) also appears to be a sound suggestion.Gill Brooks LonicanChief ExecutiveNAMB, Hertslast_img read more

first_imgMantinga, the specialist bread company, is to distribute the Manoucher range of soft Mediterranean-style breads outside London and the M25.The line of eight handmade soft breads includes the pre-sliced Barbaree loaf for sandwiches, Basil Loaf, Fokachio, Garlic Loaf, Mediterranean Sunset, Summer Dreams and Persian Noon.Manoucher was set up by Iranian businessman Manoucher Etminan in Canada in 1983 and grew out of his passion for making and eating food.Gloucestershire-based Man-tinga supplies more than 260 speciality frozen bakery products from regional artisan craft bakeries across Europe. The company is already well-established inside the M25, with customers including British Airways and Virgin, but, until now, did not have the logistical capabilities to expand beyond Greater London. “I am very excited about this partnership as we share very similar values and a passion for bread,” commented Steven Mackintosh, director of Mantinga.last_img read more

first_imgNot content with throwing televisions out of the window, rock stars are turning their destructive tendencies to bread, it would seem.Speaking on last Thursday’s Never Mind the Buzzcocks, musician and record producer-of-the-moment Calvin Harris described how, when working in a bakery when he was younger, he and colleagues used to hollow out loaves of bread at the end of the day and put them on their arms, legs and feet and wander about in something akin to a suit of bread body armour. Well, that’s one way of ticking the ’health and safety’ box.last_img read more

first_imgGingerbread maker Image on Food has launched its new Christmas range. Building on its successful line last year, it will feature Percy the Christmas Penguin and Snowy the Snowman cookie pops. These new products will join its already popular Deluxe Father Christmas and Reindeer gingerbreads. The RRP of the products ranges from £1.49 to £2.79.The new gingerbreads will be available from the autumn, either directly from Image on Food or through Hider or Cotswold Fayre.The Market Drayton-based family firm has been making gingerbread for 24 years, and supplies stores such as John Lewis, Waitrose, Harrods, Harvey Nichols, along with a large number of farm shops, delis, gift shops and tourist attractions. “We always like to ensure that our customers have something new to offer their customers and we pride ourselves on developing new products for each season,” said sales and marketing executive Vhari Russell.last_img read more

first_img Pinterest Twitter By Network Indiana – June 4, 2020 1 360 Facebook Pinterest WhatsApp Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill on the state of race relations Facebook WhatsApp (Photo supplied) INDIANAPOLIS — The deaths of black people at the hands of police officers, whether they be white or black, is a delicate issue in America today.Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill certainly understands the perspective of both sides of the coin, both as a black man and a law enforcement official. Hill says  peaceful protesters have valid reasons to be upset.“There is a problem in this country with the level of violence that seems to be happening towards African-American males. We need to address it,” Hill said. “But, on the same token, we need to do so in a proper manner.”He calls the riots, looting, and destruction of property in cities like Indianapolis “troubling”, but that the riots themselves are a “separate issue.”“It’s imperative the angst of the black community,” Hill added. “Slavery is a legacy that lives on today in the minds and hearts of black citizens. When a black person walks into a restaurant or walks into a store and someone is looking at them more so than a white individual.”Hill also alluded to the viral video of a woman in Central Park in New York City of an argument between a black man and a white woman walking her dog who was not on a leash.“The woman was some several feet away from the black gentleman and threatened him by using the trigger words: ‘an African-American man is threatening me’,” he said. “So as to say that an African-American man threatening her was more dangerous than a white man threatening her.”Hill said we as a greater society need to start better recognizing that these are the types of things African-Americans are experiencing in today’s society.“Here is the reality, each of us harbors stereotypes, implicit biases, prejudgments on other people,” said Hill. “It may be subtle. But we all have that baggage in our systems. It’s imperative that the first thing we do is a self-examination and recognize and acknowledge that we have that shortcoming. We can acknowledge that shortcoming … we can be more forgiving of the person who we accuse of having that shortcoming.”However, Hill is not laying all the blame on people who do not understand the perspective of African-Americans.“On the other hand we also have to preserve the role of law enforcement and the rule of law in this country,” Hill said. “It is absolutely vital to the protection of everybody in the community but also the black community. So there is a big, heavy lift of understanding that needs to take place from all sides.” Previous articlePerson struck, killed by train in western St. Joseph CountyNext articleNo spectators for IndyCar, NASCAR races on Fourth of July weekend at IMS Network Indiana Google+ Google+ IndianaNews Twitterlast_img read more

first_img TAGSapplicationsCommon Council Standing CommitteeCommunity Investmentcommunity relationsHealth and Public SafetyIndianaInformation and TechnologyPARCPersonnel and FinancepositionsPublic Works and Property VacationResidential NeighborhoodsSouth BendSouth Bend Common CouncilutilitiesZoning and Annexation Facebook Pinterest Pinterest WhatsApp WhatsApp Twitter Google+ Twittercenter_img By Brooklyne Beatty – January 18, 2021 0 556 Google+ (Photo Supplied/City of South Bend) The South Bend Common Council is now accepting applications for Common Council Standing Committee positions.The following positions are available:Community Investment CommitteeCommunity Relations CommitteeHealth and Public Safety CommitteeInformation and Technology CommitteePARC Committee (Parks, Recreation, Cultural Arts & Entertainment)Personnel and Finance CommitteePublic Works and Property Vacation CommitteeResidential Neighborhoods CommitteeUtilities CommitteeZoning and Annexation CommitteeApplicants must be a resident of the City of South Bend for at least one year, be available to attend meetings on a regular basis and have some background on the committee’s topics.Applications must be completed by Friday, January 29. To apply, click here. Previous articleResults of Drive Sober Or Get Pulled Over holiday blitz in Elkhart County releasedNext articleA slippery start for your Monday morning drive Brooklyne Beatty Facebook South Bend Common Council accepting applications for Standing Committee positions IndianaLocalNewsSouth Bend Marketlast_img read more

first_img WhatsApp Google+ Facebook WhatsApp IndianaLocalNews Indiana high court rules creditors can take your stimulus check By Network Indiana – March 23, 2021 2 249 Twitter Pinterest Pinterest Facebook Google+ (“Court Gavel” by Best Law, Public Domain) If you’re in trouble with creditors and are expecting a stimulus check, they can take all or part of your money, says the Indiana Supreme Court.The court declined to stop those kinds of seizures, despite requests from groups like Indiana Legal Services, Prosperity Indiana and the Indiana Institute for Working Families.The decision was made Monday morning and the court did not explain the decision. The previous stimulus payments could not be touched by creditors or debt collectors.Many Hoosiers began getting the new $1,400 payments last week. Twitter Previous articleIndiana, Michigan move income tax deadline to May 17Next articleFederal hunger relief coming to Indiana Network Indianalast_img read more

first_img The characteristics that were most strongly predictive of PIRLS performance included prior achievement in the Year 1 Phonics Check. It belongs to that strand of curricular thinking sometimes known as constructivism. The essence of this view is that studying bodies of knowledge is pedagogically ineffective. Knowledge goes quickly out of date, and learning it is dull. Children emerge allegedly unable to think for themselves, unskilled for work in the new economy, and unprepared to act as democratic citizens. Instead, children should be enabled to construct knowledge for themselves. It is increasingly clear from international comparisons that neglecting knowledge is educationally disastrous. One body of international evidence for that is assembled by E. D. Hirsch in his 2016 book Why Knowledge Matters. Especially cogent arguments in the same vein have come from two teachers in England who have become eloquent writers – Daisy Christodoulou’s ‘Seven Myths About Education’ (2013) and David Didau’s ‘What If Everything You Knew About Education Was Wrong’ (2015). The critique does not deny that skills matter, but rather says that the best way to acquire skills is through gaining knowledge. This statement essentially describes all of chemistry. So what should teachers actually teach? What are the key concepts which children should know and apply? Thank you.How can and should policy be developed to ensure education equity? A knowledge-rich curriculum should be at the heart of all schools. We believe that is key to ensuring education equity. Endowing pupils with knowledge of ‘the best that has been thought and said’ and preparing pupils to compete in an ever more competitive jobs market is the core purpose of schooling.And ensuring that pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds have the same opportunities as their more affluent peers to benefit from the cultural capital of a stretching and rigorous curriculum is key to addressing the burning injustices in our societies and driving forward social mobility.Designing and implementing these curricula should follow a thorough interrogation of the research. It is right that debates are had about what knowledge we wish to ensure all pupils possess. It is understandable that there are differing opinions about how best to prepare pupils for the challenges of the 21st century. But opinions must change as the facts change.In 2010, the government came to office in Britain. We inherited a curriculum that was not fit for purpose. The national curriculum had been stripped of knowledge, leaving pupils without the cultural literacy they needed.England was stagnating in the international league tables and too many pupils were leaving school ill-prepared to compete in our increasingly globalised world. Data from 2012 shows we were the only OECD country where the numeracy and literacy of our 16-24 year olds was no better than that of our 55 to 65 year olds.We reformed the national curriculum, restoring knowledge to its heart and clarifying what we expected children to be taught. The issues with the 2007 National Curriculum were best summed up by the statutory requirement of secondary chemistry pupils to understand ‘that there are patterns in the reactions between substances’.In ‘Could Do Better’ Tim Oates used this example to highlight the vagueness of the 2007 curriculum, writing: Thanks to the hard work of teachers and by twinning carefully sequenced, knowledge-rich curricula with wider support, the government is raising standards in our schools.In carrying out the reforms implemented since 2010, the government was careful to pursue evidence based policies. In the world of education, there are many voices who argue that the 21st century has somehow changed how education must be done. They conclude that the technological age necessitates a different approach to education. With the support of some in the business world, they encourage teachers to turn their attentions to developing the creativity, problem solving and critical thinking skills of their pupils.Around the world, many educationists – and I see one or two of them here – promote skills-based curricula as the way to prepare pupils for life in the 21st century. Often, knowledge-rich curricula are derided as an impediment to helping pupils to become creative critical-thinking problem solvers, but this is to confuse means with ends.The mistake made by these influential voices in education is to believe that creativity is a skill independent of subject domain-specific knowledge; that critical thinking can be taught discretely from the subject being thought about, or that one becomes a better problem solver simply by practicing solving problems.Just as musicians become proficient by learning their scales, it is as important that pupils build up the underlying knowledge they will need. We cannot expect a pupil to think critically about the causes of the First World War without an understanding of the delicate balance of power that existed at the turn of the 20th century. And we will not prepare pupils to be the creative, problem solving mathematicians of the future without giving them a firm grounding in the foundations of mathematics.This government in the UK is determined that the new national curriculum endows pupils with the knowledge they need, so that they are best prepared for the rigours of a globalised 21st century jobs market. But doing so must be done with due regard for the evidence. There are too many examples of governments around the world that have mistaken ends with means in the hope of preparing pupils for the 21st century, damaging educational standards in the process.Writing for the London School of Economics, Professor Lindsay Paterson of the University of Edinburgh has been a vocal critic of movements calling for skills-based curricula, writing of the underlying philosophy: This description exemplifies the belief system behind such changes. But this view is not supported by the international evidence. As Professor Paterson goes on to say, referencing teachers who are leading the knowledge-revolution in England: The new maths national curriculum for primary schools provides many examples of the specificity and detail needed for a successful curriculum, such as the structured sequence of efficient written methods of calculation that pupils are expected to have mastered at different ages.But the curriculum does not sit in isolation. The government also embarked on an ambitious reform of our national qualifications. Grade inflation was rife under the previous government and too many pupils – particularly from disadvantaged backgrounds – were being entered into low quality qualifications. Public confidence in the education system had been knocked.The government put an end to grade inflation and is introducing new GCSEs and A levels that put England’s exams on a par with the best in the world. These changes are breathing life back into the country’s education system.However, the introduction of new assessments has also been important. The government has announced the introduction of a multiplication tables check for year 4 pupils – a short online assessment designed to support the curriculum stipulation that pupils should know their tables by age 9. The government is determined that no child leaves primary school without securing the basics of mathematics.Already, the government has had success thanks to another curriculum change supported by a short assessment. Conscious of the overwhelming research in favour of teaching children to read using systematic synthetic phonics, the government embarked on a campaign to ensure every child is taught to read using the most effective methods. As well as requiring schools to teach using an evidence based phonics programme, the government introduced the phonics screening check – a short assessment of a pupil’s ability to decode simple words.The phonics screening check was introduced for the first time in 2012. That year, just 58% of 6-year-olds could correctly read 32 or more words from a list of 40. Thanks to the hard work of teachers and the government’s drive for phonics, there are 154,000 more 6-year-olds on track to be fluent readers this year. The proportion passing the phonics screening check in year 1 has risen to 81%, with 92% having passed the check by the end of year 2.The success of this policy has been confirmed by international results. The PIRLS international study of 9-year-olds’ reading ability in 50 countries around the world showed that England has risen from joint 10th place in 2011 to joint 8th place in 2016, thanks to a statistically significant rise in our average score. And the data is clear on the role that the phonics reforms played in these results, with the report accompanying the results concluding that: This nuanced understanding of the relationship between knowledge and skills is crucial to approaching curriculum design. In particular, the importance of subject domain specific knowledge to skill acquisition and transferability should be more widely understood.A successful curriculum should enable pupils to participate in the great conversations of humankind, and it should prepare pupils to thrive in an ever more globalised and competitive economy. Both of these ambitions require a curriculum designed to give pupils access to the best that has been thought and said. Pupils deserve a rich and stretching knowledge-based curriculum that provides them with cultural literacy and a foundation of knowledge to use and apply in a variety of contexts.We should judge our curricula by their success in achieving these aims.Thank you.last_img read more

first_img publish a programme of work to support the IP valuation market by autumn 2018. We will also work with industry to help identify solutions to address skills gaps around IP valuation organise roundtables with online intermediaries and rights holders. These will consider the practicalities of agreeing new Codes of Practice in social media, digital advertising and online market places support the Creative Content UK campaign, Get it Right from a Genuine Site, by providing joint funding of £2 million with DCMS On 28 March, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Department for Business jointly launched the Creative Industries Sector Deal. More than £150 million will be invested by government and industry to help the country’s world-leading cultural and creative businesses thrive.This follows on from the government’s Industrial Strategy White Paper that was published in November. The strategy committed to roll-out Sector Deals, which are partnerships between government and industry to increase sector productivity.The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has been working with DCMS and the Creative Industries on including intellectual property (IP) in this Sector Deal. We have committed to: consider site blocking and ways that this could be introduced continue our work to help address the value gap, both within the Digital Single Market copyright proposals and at domestic levels For more information, read the full Creative Industries Sector Deal.last_img read more

first_img Irish republic £166.4m £201.8m £214.2m Our products are sold as far away as Australia, and we are keen for more people around the world to enjoy our artisanal, indulgent chocolates. The Grown Up Chocolate Company, founded in 2010 and now with 37 employees, also benefits from exporting its indulgent versions of childhood favourites overseas.Last year the company had an annual turnover of just over £2 million and they are hoping to expand to a larger site.James Ecclestone, of the Grown Up Chocolate Company, said: Country exported to 2015 2016 2017 USA £13.6m £21.7m £16.9m Britain’s independent chocolatiers are making the most of the growing global demand for their tasty treats this Easter.Last year over £680 million of chocolate from the UK was snapped up by foreign consumers, who are showing an increasing taste for quality products. Exports have risen significantly from £370 million in 2010 – an 84% rise.The number of independent chocolatiers in the UK has also grown in recent years, with more artisanal and specialised products being launched to meet consumer demand – both here and abroad. The manufacture of cocoa, chocolate and sugar confectionery is now worth £1.1 billion to the UK economy.The government is supporting many small businesses to taking advantage of this by helping them explore export opportunities in the 149 worldwide markets that currently import UK chocolate.Food and Farming Minister George Eustice said: Exporting is vital for me and my brand. It can be hard work but I am quite resourceful. I’m excited about now expanding into the US and the Middle East. There has been a huge growth in the number of independent chocolatiers in the UK and they are very adept at creating delicious products that are shaping consumer tastes around the world. There are great opportunities to increase our food and drink exports and increasing market access around the world is a major focus for government. Australia £23.7m £17.5m £19.5m The government, and its team of trade experts, continues to encourage and support UK business as they consider launching into overseas markets or expanding their current global customer base.This is complemented by the government’s Food is GREAT campaign, which highlights the success of current exporters and showcases the UK’s top quality food and drink.The Department for International Trade is currently working with business on the development of a new Export Strategy, which will explore the barriers to exporting and identify the best ways in which government can help drive and support UK companies to increase exporting activity and unlock high potential opportunities overseas.Baroness Fairhead, Minister of State for Trade and Export Promotion, said: Poland £24m £29.8m £30.6m UK Export Finance – the UK’s export credit agency exists to ensure no viable export deal fails due to lack of finance and insurance, including working capital loan and contract bond support for UK exporters. UKEF has £50 billion in capacity to support UK exports globally and has recently partnered with five of the UK’s biggest banks to help small businesses better access this support. Face-to-face support for exporters in England – delivered via a network of around 250 International Trade Advisers (ITAs). ITAs are managed by 9 delivery partners who operate in each of the 9 English regions. Trade shows – DIT supports trade shows across the world to showcase the best of UK companies from sectors including life sciences, automotive and food and drink. Top 5 ways the government supports businesses to export:center_img Board of Trade – with representatives from the business community to be the ‘eyes and ears’ of modern businesses. It meets 4 times a year rotated around the UK guaranteeing all parts of the Union have a chance to raise the issues most important to them. Exports are a key part of what we do and represent over a quarter of our business. great.gov.uk – export platform which lists thousands of export opportunities worth millions of pounds. It also puts firms in touch with global buyers at the click of a mouse. The Government has also just launched a step by step exporting guide here. It is great to see British businesses exporting increasing amounts of chocolate around the world as they seek to meet the ever-growing demand for our produce. Germany £40.7m £49.4m £50.6m Export support is a key way that the government can help businesses succeed and grow, which is why I am currently developing a new Export Strategy to break down the barriers companies face when doing business on the international stage. One business taking advantage of the increasing global demand for Britain’s high quality, artisan chocolates is Amelia Rope Chocolate, which started as a kitchen business in 2007 creating truffles and chocolate-dipped crystallised flora and now sells products in Hong Kong and Asia. The company’s hand-foiled salted butter caramel Easter eggs will be served to business class customers on the Eurostar over the coming weekend.Founder Amelia Rope has a passion for creating chocolate using sustainable ingredients and using recyclable material in her packaging – this year her Easter eggs are being sold in biodegradable bags rather than large amounts of cardboard and plastic.Founder Amelia Rope said: Canada £22.8m £23.4m £21.8m Netherlands £66.7m £69.2m £70.2m UAE £14.6m £13.7m £17m France £34.3m £36.3m £37mlast_img read more

first_img Costain use drones for inspections at Hinkley Point C Nuclear Power Station, saving 50% of costs compared to the use of helicopters or human inspection teams the inspection of a wind turbine typically costs around $1,500 per tower. Performing the same inspection using a drone cuts the cost by around 50% Network Rail are using drones to improve track maintenance and boost field worker efficiency, whilst reducing the amount of work at height required on Network Rail’s assets the use of drone to deliver parcels significantly reduces costs, research by Deutsche Bank showed that drones cost less than $0.05 per mile to deliver a parcel the size of a shoe box, compared to delivery costs of up to $6.50 for premium ground services television shows such as Planet Earth II use drones to film wildlife hundreds of feet in the trees Switchboard 0300 330 3000 We are seeing fast growth in the numbers of drones being used, both commercially and for fun. Whilst we want this industry to innovate and grow, we need to protect planes, helicopters and their passengers from the increasing numbers of drones in our skies. These new laws will help ensure drones are used safely and responsibly. Media enquiries 020 7944 3021 We welcome the clarity that today’s announcement provides as it leaves no doubt that anyone flying a drone must stay well away from aircraft, airports and airfields. Drones open up some exciting possibilities but must be used responsibly. These clear regulations, combined with new surveillance technology, will help the police apprehend and prosecute anyone endangering the travelling public. In addition to these measures a draft Drones Bill will be published this summer, which will give police more tailored powers to intervene on the spot if drones are being used inappropriately.Drone operators will also eventually be required to use apps – so they can access the information needed to make sure any planned flight can be made safely and legally.For model aircraft flying associations who have a long-standing safety culture, work is underway with the CAA to make sure drone regulations do not impact their activity.Drones filmAs part of the government’s modern Industrial Strategy the Nesta Flying High challenge has already identified 5 cities with plans for how drone technology could operate in their complex city environments to address local needs.The future of mobility is one of the modern Industrial Strategy Grand Challenges and forms part of a long term plan to build a Britain fit for the future through a stronger, fairer economy. Through this, the government is helping businesses to create better, higher-paying jobs – setting a path for Britain to lead in the high-tech, highly-skilled industries of the future.Background informationThe new laws are being made via an amendment to the Air Navigation Order 2016.Drone users who flout the new height and airport boundary restrictions could be charged with recklessly or negligently acting in a manner likely to endanger an aircraft or any person in an aircraft. This could result in an unlimited fine, up to five years in prison, or both.Users who fail to register or sit the competency tests could face fines of up to £1,000.There has been a significant increase in the number of commercial permissions issued by the CAA in the last year. The number of active commercial licences increased from 2,500 to 3,800 in 2017, a year on year growth of 52%.There has been a year on year increase in drone incidents with 71 in 2016 rising to 93 in 2017.A recently released PwC report highlighted that the uptake of drones could be worth up to £41.7 billion to the UK GDP by 2030.Drones are currently being used for a broad range of purposes across different industry sectors: Chris Woodroofe, Chief Operating Officer, Gatwick Airport, said: Aviation, Europe and technology media enquiries Out of hours media enquiries 020 7944 4292 the government is introducing height limits to help make sure drones are used safely as the sector grows limits around airports are being tightened up with new restrictions to prevent drones from causing harm drone users will have to register and take online safety tests to improve accountability New laws being introduced today (30 May 2018) will restrict all drones from flying above 400 feet and within 1 kilometre of airport boundaries.Following a year-on-year increase in the report of drone incidents with aircraft – with 93 in 2017 – these measures will reduce the possibility of damage to windows and engines of planes and helicopters. The changes will come into effect on 30 July 2018.The new laws will also require owners of drones weighing 250 grams or more to register with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and for drone pilots to take an online safety test to ensure the UK’s skies are safe from irresponsible flyers. These requirements will come into force on 30 November 2019.Drone filmThe changes are part of the future of mobility Grand Challenge, which was laid out in the government’s modern Industrial Strategy. Ensuring drones are being used safely will pave the way for the devices to play an increasingly important role in society.Drones have the potential to bring great benefits to the UK, they already help inspect national infrastructure like our railways and power stations, and are even aiding disaster relief speeding up the delivery of blood. PwC has predicted the industry could be worth £42 billion in the UK by 2030.The CAA and airports will have the power to make exceptions to these restrictions in specific circumstances.Baroness Sugg, Aviation Minister, said:last_img read more

first_img These pilots will prove pivotal to our understanding of the situation and to inform any future accommodation provision. This will help improve the outcomes for ex-offenders across the country. When leaving custody, ex-offenders should all have a safe and suitable home to go to and there is work to be done to ensure this is the case. As well as ensuring people have somewhere to live, dedicated key worker support will help ex-offenders manage the practical challenges of finding a job and other issues that come with trying to reintegrate into society. Housing benefit top ups and rental deposits will ensure that accommodation will be provided from the day offenders leave prison, bolstered through wrap around support from key workers to address other needs which may normally cause the loss of a tenancy, such as attending appropriate probation and employment appointments.Heather Wheeler MP, Minister for Housing and Homelessness said: Once the trial has completed, it will be fully evaluated to assess the potential for the scheme to be rolled out more widely across England. We will also be working with the Welsh Government to deliver a similar accommodation solution.The Rough Sleeping Strategy was launched in August 2018 and sets out to halve rough sleeping on England’s streets by 2022 and end it altogether by 2027. It is backed by an additional £100 million and developed across government in conjunction with charities and experts.The strategy lays out a 3-pronged approach to tackling rough sleeping, including preventing rough sleeping by providing timely support, intervening to help people already on the streets get swift, targeted support and helping people recover, find a new home quickly and rebuild their lives. Leeds, Pentonville and Bristol prisons have been chosen to spearhead the £6 million pilot programme aimed at helping vulnerable ex-prisoners find and stay in stable accommodation.Research shows that those who are homeless or in temporary accommodation are significantly more likely to reoffend within a year than those with a stable place to live.The pilots are aimed specifically at prisoners serving short sentences who are at high risk of returning to prison. This represents the latest in a series of measures aimed at breaking the cycle of reoffending, from improving prisoners’ employment prospects to reinforcing family ties.The sites will pilot a new partnership approach between prisons, local authorities, probation staff, charities and others who will work together to provide the support prisoners need when they are released – such as signing up for benefits – but will primarily be focused on finding them suitable accommodation.The two-year programme forms part of the Government’s £100m Rough Sleeping Strategy announced over the summer.Justice Secretary David Gauke said: Every time we help an ex-prisoner into a new life – with a stable home, strong relationships and a regular job – we increase the chances of seeing fewer victims of crime in the future. These ground-breaking pilots will help prevent rough sleeping among vulnerable ex-offenders and support them as they start a new life after prison. Three prisons to pilot new scheme to support at-risk offenders Dedicated housing funding to provide stable accommodation for up to two years Support to help prisoners integrate into communities for the long-termlast_img read more

first_imgThe Coronavirus Status Checker, which is the latest example of the NHS harnessing the power of technology and data to help it tackle the epidemic, is part of the NHS coronavirus service. It complements the NHS 111 online coronavirus tool launched earlier this month, which gives the public digital access to health advice, isolation notes and a daily text messaging service for those self-isolating with symptoms.The Status Checker will not identify users from the information they provide, although it will cross-reference data from other sources to ensure it avoids counting people twice.The answers given by the public will only be used by the NHS and trusted organisations working directly with the NHS in response to coronavirus. The information will not be retained any longer than is strictly necessary post COVID-19.Prof Keith Willett, Strategic Incident Director NHS England, said: Technology and data is playing a vital role in battling coronavirus and supporting our heroic NHS frontline workers to save lives, protect the vulnerable, and relive pressure on the NHS. We must learn as much as possible about this virus, and we are asking the whole nation to join this effort. If anyone has experienced symptoms of COVID-19 I would urge you to use our new status checker app to help us to collect essential information on the virus and allow us to better allocate NHS resources where they are needed most. The survey can be accessed on the NHS website at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus-status-checker why they are staying at home to choose from a series of options to describe how they are feeling whether they have any other health problems their date of birth their postcode how many people are living in their home. A new Coronavirus Status Checker that will help the NHS coordinate its response and build up additional data on the COVID-19 outbreak has been launched today by Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock.People with potential coronavirus symptoms are now being asked to complete the status checker and answer a short series of questions which will tell the NHS about their experience.It is open to anyone in the UK to use on the NHS website and in its initial phase the NHS is particularly keen for anyone who thinks they may be displaying potential coronavirus symptoms, no matter how mild, to complete it.Status Checker users are clearly told at the beginning and the end of the survey that it is not a triage or clinical advice tool, and that they should visit 111 online for medical advice about their symptoms.The information gathered will help the NHS to plan its response to the outbreak, indicating when and where more resources like oxygen, ventilators and additional staff might be needed and will provide valuable insight into the development and progression of the virus across the country.Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: We know large volumes of people are visiting NHS 111 online each day, reporting potential coronavirus symptoms and being advised to self-isolate, and it will be hugely valuable for the NHS if we can learn more about these people and their experiences. By taking a few moments to answer these questions, you can play your part in helping the NHS put its resources in the right places, at the right time, to save lives. The service is hosted on the NHS website and is available to access openly, with links directly from the NHS 111 online coronavirus service and NHS coronavirus pages.The initiative is a collaboration between NHS England, NHSX, NHS Digital and Public Health England at the request of the Health and Social Care Secretary.The creators of a number of independent apps and websites which have already launched to collect similar data have agreed to work openly with the NHS and align their products and data as part of this central, national effort.Information collected by the NHS Coronavirus Status Checker will form part of a core national COVID-19 dataset held by NHS England.The tool is live now and people can complete the survey either for themselves or on behalf of someone else with their permission.It asks them: Notes to editors The Coronavirus Status Checker has initially been developed for NHS England. Data will be made available for the devolved administrations to support their response needslast_img read more

first_imgThe campaigning efforts of independent coffee shop businesses and local residents have resulted in Costa Coffee backing out from opening an outlet in a Devonshire town.Chris Rogers, managing director of the Whitbread-owned coffee shop business, wrote a letter to local residents of Totnes, the BBC News website revealed, explaining the company had “recognised the strength of feeling” against national brands in the town.He added that Costa had taken into account the “specific circumstances” of Totnes, which is home to more than 40 independent coffee shop businesses, and came to the decision following discussions with local groups.Costa gained approval for the new site on Fore Street from South Hams District Council back in August, but felt the brunt of the anti-Costa campaigning group NoToCosta, which managed to accumulate more than 5,700 signatures on a petition against the move.NoToCosta published a statement on its website last week, which said: “This is a major milestone for local communities and is a day when the value of localism comes into its own, albeit belatedly. Unfortunately, we’re now left with a situation where planning has been granted for change of use. We’d encourage South Hams District Council to learn the lesson that Costa Coffee has had to correct. If localism means communities have the right to decide what happens in their towns, its time for planners to understand this as well.”The letter to Totnes’ residents was also signed by the town’s MP Dr Sarah Wollaston and Mayor Pruw Boswell, who thanked Costa for “listening to our concerns and showing they care”.Last week, Whitbread announced as part of its financial results for the six months to 30 August 2012 that Costa had opened 141 net new coffee shops, taking its total store count to 2,344.The company featured on British Baker’s BB75 list of the top 75 UK bakery firms as this year’s fastest-growing business, adding 852 new stores to its estate over the last five years and opening stores at more than twice the rate of high street bakery retailer Greggs.last_img read more

first_imgMore needs to be done to publicise industry apprenticeships to young people, according to Craft Bakers’ Association (CBA) president Anthony Kindred. Commenting on a recent report by The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), which praised apprenticeships over “dead-end” college courses, Kindred said that apprenticeships were not given enough publicity.“A lot of it isn’t very good publicity. Sometimes young people aren’t always the best at finding out information, and they have to search for it when they go to job centres. There’s not really enough information on what local companies might offer.”The new report, Condition of Britain briefing 2: Growing up and becoming an adult, is the second in a series of three published by the IPPR on young people, work and benefits. A summary of the report states that for those in their teens and early 20s, “life has become, for many, more difficult and insecure in recent decades”.It states that without sufficient skills, some young people will spend their time moving in and out of “dead-end jobs” and “low-value training programmes”.Angela Coleshill, director of employment and skills at Food and Drink Federation, said: “There is no doubt that skills are the driving force to a successful industry. Growing our talent pool through apprenticeships is a key priority for food and drink manufacturers and is essential to our ability to deliver future growth. “We are currently taking action to address this via a number of projects and initiatives. For example, in 2011, our sector pledged to double the number of apprenticeships within food and drink manufacturing but we in fact smashed this target by quadrupling apprenticeships.” She added: “Building on this pledge, food and drink manufacturing is now one of the eight sectors,  including automotive and aerospace, chosen to lead Apprenticeship reform as part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Apprenticeship Trailblazer initiative to develop ground-breaking new standards for apprenticeships across the country.”In 2012, Kindred provided an apprenticeship for now 19-year-old Jordan-Reece Reed who had previously been completing a hospitality course in south London. “He’s absolutely excellent,” said Kindred. “I don’t think, if he’d stayed on his course, he would have got the right sort of job.”For the craft baker, apprenticeships provide young people with vital trade skills, enabling them to find work regardless of location.“It goes back to the old thing of learning a trade. I was always taught when I was young that if you’ve got a trade, you can work anywhere in the world. If you can’t find a job in your own town, you can start looking at the next town. If you’ve got a trade you’ve got a reason for somebody to give you a job.”Coleshill added: “Companies who employ apprentices gain a valuable staff member with the talent to make a difference to the business, the apprentice gains the confidence, ambition and sense of value which goes hand-in-hand with earning a recognised qualification, inspiring loyalty and the drive to take their career in food and drink further.”last_img read more

first_imgBatch, an event for bakers organised by Real Bread Campaign, is to take place in Edinburgh on 18 June.The Edinburgh event, which follows the success of Batch in Somerset and London in 2018, will take place at Cafe St. Honoré, and will comprise a three-course meal crafted by the team at the eatery to showcase seasonal ingredients and real bread.Between courses there will be talks by guests including Pam Brunton (Inver Restaurant), Neil Forbes (Cafe St Honoré, BBC Radio Scotland, The Scotsman) and Andrew Whitley (Bread Matters, Scotland the Bread).There are only 40 places available, priced at £30 for Real Bread Campaign supporters and £35 for their guests. A share of the proceeds will go towards the running of the Real Bread Campaign.Last month, the Real Bread Campaign revealed a new line-up of ambassadors including 12 women, after it came under scrutiny for a lack of gender diversity among its ambassadors last year. The new ambassadors will be vocal champions for the Campaign and real bread in general.last_img read more

first_imgMr Kipling owner Premier Foods has named its UK managing director Alex Whitehouse as chief executive officer.The business has also announced that Colin Day has been appointed non-executive chairman, and that acting CEO Alastair Murray is leaving the business. All the changes take effect from today (30 August).Whitehouse (pictured right) joined Premier Foods in July 2014 and was appointed managing director of the grocery division two months later. He became UK managing director in April 2017 and has been responsible for leading the grocery business, which includes flavourings, cooking sauces and home baking.Premier said Whitehouse has more than 20 years’ international, marketing, sales, strategy, innovation and general management experience.He spent 18 years with Reckitt Benckiser where he held senior marketing and general management roles including managing director, New Zealand, and was most recently worldwide head of shopper and customer marketing.Whitehouse said he was looking forward to working with Day and the board to drive further value from Premier’s brands.“I’m very encouraged by the improved performance of the business over the last couple of years and see this as something we can build on further,” he added.Day retired as chief executive of components manufacturer Essentra in 2017. He was previously chief financial officer at Reckitt Benckiser for more than 10 years. Currently a Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) board member, he has chaired the Defra audit and risk assurance committee since July 2018. He is a non-executive director and audit committee chair at Meggitt plc and Euromoney plc.Premier’s chief financial officer Alastair Murray, who has held that role for six years and has been acting CEO following the departure of Gavin Darby in January, has agreed to leave the business and step down from the board.”On behalf of the board I would like to thank Alastair Murray for his outstanding contribution to the business, both as CFO and more latterly as acting CEO, and wish him all the best for the future,” said senior independent director Richard Hodgson.Duncan Leggett, group director of financial control and corporate development, will become acting chief financial officer pending a permanent replacement for Murray.last_img read more

first_imgSource: Getty ImagesGroceries Code Adjudicator (GCA) Mark White is seeking views from bakery companies which supply the supermarkets to find out whether they are being treated fairly.It forms part of the GCA annual survey and is described as a valuable opportunity for baked goods suppliers to the UK’s largest supermarkets to tell GCA about any code issues they are facing and whether the regulated retailers are treating them fairly and lawfully.GCA regulated the relationship between direct suppliers and the UK’s 13 largest supermarkets.For the first time the survey will also ask suppliers to provide positive feedback to their retailers as well as saying what has not worked so well.This will be the eighth year the survey has been conducted and, as in previous years, it will be carried out by independent polling company YouGov.From the beginning, the survey has played an important role in helping the GCA to achieve progress for suppliers, demonstrating where retailers’ efforts have improved Code compliance and identifying areas for them to make improvements, it said.“This survey will be immensely valuable in helping me identify the issues the groceries sector is facing as well as guiding my future work. What suppliers can tell me is particularly important as this is my first year as GCA and the sector is still working under the challenges of Covid and Brexit so I am asking them to be as frank as possible. Their answers can help their businesses,” said White.“I have decided to include two innovations this year. First, I would like to hear from suppliers who think the retailers are doing a good job so I can highlight success and share good practice.”The second is that after the main survey has closed, YouGov will carry out some detailed interviews with suppliers on issues arising from the findings. Those interested in taking part should provide contact details at the end of the survey.“For example, in the last survey just over a third of respondents still reported Code-related issues even though the results showed progress across many areas. I would like to understand more clearly why this is the case,” he added.White emphasised that all information will be treated with complete confidence.The survey closes on 21 February and GCA will publish the results in spring/summer. You can take part in the survey via this link.last_img read more