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Sales of Fairtrade certified products increased 15 per cent in 2009, according to the global Fairtrade body, Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International (FLO).
Food processors in Ireland look set to benefit from a partnership between a national food authority and a top university to boost technology, innovation and research.
The UK Takeover Panel this week issued a rare public censure of Kraft after the company was held in breach of the executive body’s code by going back on promises relating to the closure of a Cadbury chocolate factory in Somerdale.
Young’s Seafood and The Seafood Group have installed a new demand forecasting system in the first stage of a European roll-out by parent company Findus Group.
Tate & Lyle has announced a major shake-up of its business, shifting focus to specialty food ingredients and away from its traditional sugar business.
The EU Nutrition and Health Claims Regulation is unlikely to stifle innovation within the food industry as many fear, according to a member of the European Food Safety Authority’s NDA panel speaking in London yesterday.
A Sydney-based craft baker claims to have developed the perfect mould for making edible bread bowls after 10 years of research and development.
St George’s Distillery will launch the first ‘peated’ whisky made in England next month.
The School Food Trust (SFT) has emerged relatively unscathed from the coalition government’s bonfire of the quangos.
Chilled soups and sauces maker TSC Foods is pumping £2m into new kit to increase production capacity at its plant in Scunthorpe.
There was a sharp rise in incidents relating to the declaration of sulphites in 2009 compared with 2008, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has revealed.
Branded goods have driven an increase in the average number of items bought during each visit to Marks & Spencer, which is seeing "strong like-for-like growth in the original trial stores", bosses have revealed.
Many consumers are uninspired by the vegetarian offer at supermarkets, convenience stores, pubs and fast-food restaurants, new research has shown.
While margins in chilled ready meals manufacturing remain wafer-thin, factory closures in the sector have gone “some way” to rebalancing supply and demand, Greencore has claimed.
The new coalition government will cut £270m from regional development agencies (RDAs), cut DEFRA's budget by £162m and slash £600m from quangos this year as it embarks on a radical cost-cutting drive to save £6.2bn.
Credit insurance premiums will not return to pre-recession levels, according to one leading supplier.
Product developers at a “very large confectionery company”, a smoothie maker, a babyfood manufacturer and several cereal bar makers are conducting trials of products containing powder from the pulp of the African baobab fruit.
Pork giant Cranswick is increasing capacity at factories in Sherburn, Hull, Preston and Norfolk after posting a sparkling set of full-year results.
If Marks & Spencer wants to compete with Waitrose in the long-term it should embark on a radical restructure of its property portfolio, develop a full-range convenience offer at its high street stores and make a serious move into online food shopping, according to City analysts.
The UK definition of 'ice cream' must be brought in line with the rest of Europe if the Food Standards Agency (FSA) wants manufacturers to make meaningful progress on saturated fat reduction, according to a leading supplier.
Trades unions have written to Nestlé UK requesting fresh talks over wages as it now seems increasingly likely that members will reject its offer of a 1% increase in basic pay for staff at its York chocolate factory.
Arla’s proposed 1bn-litre ‘super dairy’ in Greater London will shake up the UK liquid milk market but is unlikely to alter radically the balance of power in the trade, according to one analyst.
Unilever is in favour of labelling nanoparticles in products “where they [labels] provide meaningful and specific information to consumers”.
The UK Health & Safety Executive (HSE) has issued a warning to firms filling and testing mixed gas cylinders for the beverages industry after a man lost part of his leg when a cylinder he had just finished filling exploded.
The Low Sodium Sea Salt Company has seen sales volumes surge more than 25% in the past year as manufacturers seek to reduce sodium levels.
A seeds and pulses supplier founded just as the economy was plunging into recession has increased turnover from zero to £10m in just two years.
Food manufacturers are being “far too cautious” when it comes to setting best-before dates for many ambient food products, according to a leading academic in the field of sensory shelf-life testing.
More than a quarter (27%) of British shoppers miss breakfast at least two days a week - up from one in five (19%) in 2004 - according to a new survey by grocery think-tank IGD.
Barring another financial crash, the UK sandwich market should continue to see solid growth this year as shoppers tire of making their own packed lunches and look to retailers and caterers to provide an affordable alternative, according to one leading supplier.
Denmark’s leading supplier of anaerobic digestion (AD) technology will start commissioning a new AD plant in Scotland this year after striking a £13.5m deal with Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE).
Britvic has gained a foothold in the €12.5bn French soft drinks market with a €237m deal to acquire soft drinks firm Fruité that will "serve as a platform for growth across Western Europe".
Dairy Crest will pump the best part of £25m into its factories this year as it embarks on the first stage of a three-year, £75m capital expenditure programme.
Robert Wiseman Dairies is investing £8m into doubling its processing capacity for filtered milk at its Droitwich dairy after striking a deal with Tesco to boost production of its ‘Pure’ range.
Birmingham-based ethnic foods manufacturer Spice Time is moving into new purpose-built premises this year as it embarks on an ambitious bid to become the UK’s leading Halal foodservice manufacturer.
Nestlé has pledged to crack down on companies “owning or managing high-risk palm oil plantations or farms linked to deforestation” as part of a new commitment to sustainable sourcing.
Fats and oils specialist AAK has scored another industry first with the launch of a new low-saturated fat pumpable shortening containing fully-traceable, certified sustainable palm oil.
Risk-based inspections of abattoirs and primary meat processing plants are unlikely to become a reality for many years, despite growing support across the EU for a change to legislation covering this issue.
The percentage of new products launched in Europe containing low- or no-fat claims dropped from 8% in 2005 to just 5% in 2009, while the percentage containing ‘green’ messages has grown rapidly over the same period, according to Mintel.
Staff at the Food Standards Agency (FSA) are trying to function in a state of limbo as they wait to hear their fate under the new Tory/Lib Dem administration.
Universal Beverages has installed a new canning line at its site in Ledbury, Herefordshire, as it steps up its expansion plans.
Unilever is “delivering on its promises” and can no longer be described as a “supertanker” or “resistant to change”, according to a new report from Investec Securities.
A form of near infrared imaging technology pioneered by the military could provide food manufacturers with a more powerful tool to measure the distribution of components such as moisture, fat and protein in foods where they are not evenly distributed.
Free-from products should be stocked alongside their conventional counterparts to ensure they are visible to a broader group of shoppers, according to a leading player in the gluten-free bakery market.
Thorntons has made some significant savings through using online auctions to procure raw materials and some ‘bought-in’ products, buyers have revealed.
New Marks & Spencer boss Marc Bolland may seek to extract fresh savings from his food supply base this year, but is unlikely to embark on another ‘project Genesis’-style crusade in the immediate future, analysts have predicted.
Irn Bru maker AG Barr will start shifting its first deliveries by rail this month after striking a three-year warehousing and distribution contract with Eddie Stobart.
The legal battle between Asda and Ajinomoto over the rights to describe aspartame as 'nasty' has moved into a new phase.
Reading Scientific Services (RSSL) will house an expanded global science and technology centre supporting Kraft worldwide following a radical restructuring that will also see Cadbury Bournville transformed into a global centre of excellence for chocolate research.
A novel milk containing significantly reduced levels of saturated fat could offer fresh hope to manufacturers under pressure to improve the nutritional profile of butter, cheese and cream, FoodManufacture.co.uk has learnt.
Attempts to tackle saturated fat levels by reducing portion sizes could backfire if consumers don’t understand what you are trying to achieve, Ginsters has warned.
Robert Schofield’s position as chief executive of Premier Foods is looking “increasingly untenable”, according to analysts at Investec.
Volumes of sucralose sold in Europe could double in the next four to five years, according to one supplier challenging Tate & Lyle’s monopoly of the market.
Are your customers paying their bills on time? Will you invest more in new product development this year compared with last year? How easy has it been to access finance this year?
Dunstable-based bakery Honeytop Speciality Foods has doubled its capacity and created 140 new jobs following new business wins and an expansion of its product range.
Retailers and manufacturers are still struggling to develop an approach to saturated fat reduction that delivers a return on investment and appeals to consumers, according to delegates at Food Manufacture’s first round table debate on sat fats.
The hung parliament has raised a large question mark over some key areas of food policy, with uncertainty surrounding everything from the future of the Food Standards Agency (FSA) to the implementation of Labour’s 2030 strategy, according to law firm Eversheds.
Early indications are that the 1% rise in basic pay offered to staff at Nestlé UK’s York factory might not be enough to avert the threat of industrial action.
The new director general of the European Commission’s directorate for health and consumer affairs, DG Sanco, has warned manufacturers to expect a tougher line from her than from her predecessor if they fail to make faster progress on improving the nutritional profiles of their products.
The future of unpasteurised cheese could be put in jeopardy if tighter controls are introduced to stem the tuberculosis epidemic spreading through the UK dairy herd.
The Polish chocolate factory at the centre of the row over Kraft’s takeover of Cadbury will start manufacturing products destined for the UK market in the second quarter of this year.
The Co-operative Group has insisted that Somerfield stores are performing “in line with our expectations” following press reports suggesting that sales had slumped in response to recent ranging and pricing changes.
As the nation goes to the polls, FoodManufacture.co.uk asks food manufacturing bosses what they would like to see from the new government. From curbs on the FSA to laws forcing firms to pay bills on time, here's what they have to say ...
More than 60 manufacturers are now exchanging product data with Sainsbury via the global data synchronisation network (GSDN) as part of a trial designed to tackle the delays, errors and stock shortages caused by bad data.
Using a web-based system to handle supplier approvals has boosted significantly the efficiency of supplier compliance management (SCM) at Unilever, supply chain bosses have revealed.
A UK firm pioneering the use of electrostatics to apply flavourings to snacks is now talking to manufacturers about using it to apply starch powder to grated cheese, cheese slices and pizza.
Northern Foods has slashed factory insurance premiums by 30% in a four-year workplace safety campaign working closely with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
Newly-formed soft drinks maker Cawingredients has opened its flagship 10,422sqm factory at Leeming Bar Industrial Park, north Yorkshire.
After a small rebound earlier this year, retail food inflation will "fall back again and remain subdued for the next 18 months - unless some major unforeseen shock to global supply occurs", English Food and Farming Partnerships (EFFP) has predicted.
The amount of time and money Office of Fair Trading (OFT) officials have spent pursuing their investigation into alleged price fixing in the dairy industry is “quite ridiculous”, according to a leading competition lawyer.
UK retailers are starting to explore the potential of Middle Eastern foods in their ready meals aisles and snack fixtures, according to a leading supplier of Syrian-inspired snacks.
Just over 40% of consumers say calorie counts on menus when eating out would improve the dining experience, according to a UK survey conducted by The Mystery Dining Company (TMDC).
A Hartlepool fish wholesaler is moving into new markets after being awarded £115,500 of EU funding to extend its factory.
In recognition of their 10th birthday, the Food Manufacturing Excellence Awards have been relaunched. The revamped awards, which will be presented on Tuesday November 2, have a simplified entry process and a spanking new venue The Savoy in London, which reopens this summer after a £100m restoration.
Industry is challenging the 10-day shelf-life rule, reports John Dunn
Logistics firms will have to pass fuel costs on to processors if they climb much higher, according to chilled and ambient logistics company Culina Logistics.
Chilled food distributor Freshlinc has signed a six-year contract with logistics solutions provider Isotrak to boost the efficiency of its refrigerated delivery fleet.
A recent evaluation of conventional and robot palletisers by Chronos BTH shows a combined equipment base of more than 700 installations around the world. Reflecting this expertise, the stand at Total will feature a Chrono-Pal RP Robot Palletiser, which utilises a Fanuc robot palletising arm.
Allen Coding Systems will be showing a wide range of high- performance laser, thermal transfer and carton coding and marking equipment.
For organisations that use both Dolav and Eurobin containers, Industrial Washing Machines is now offering a combination container washer.
Following the recent acquisitions of aseptic filling and capping systems specialist Flexicon and sinusoidal pump firm MasoSine, the Watson-Marlow Pumps Group has strengthened its offering to the process and packaging machinery industries.
Fine mesh separation expert Russell Finex will showcase its range of sieves and filters at the Total Show.
Global automation manufacturer Omron Electronics will be showcasing its latest range of vision inspection technology, highlighting key applications with respect to product conformity and printed code verification.
Fortress Technology's latest Vector integrated conveyor system has been enhanced to meet the latest supermarket retailer standards.
The treatment of water effluent can be challenging and expensive, particularly given the need to keep in line with EU regulations and keep costs down.
Siemens Industry Automation and Drive Technologies has launched a new range of motor starters that drastically reduce assembly time and offer improved fault diagnostic information.
Meet the men with the ultimate goal of selling American muffins to the US
SICK has extended the 3D imaging capabilities of its IVC-3D smart camera to harsh environments, such as the food and beverage industry, with the launch of the IVC-3D Stainless Steel.
Equipment provider Marel launched the Polyslicer from AEW Delford at the Foodex show in March this year.
Acacia gum provider Colloides Naturels International has launched a nutritional texturiser and efficient fat replacer called Equacia. The combination of acacia gum soluble fibre and gluten-free insoluble wheat fibre promises functional and nutritional benefits to the finished products.
As health continues to be a major trend, manufacturers look towards ingredient suppliers for added benefits, reports Hayley Brown
Putting the 'X' factor into new product development (NPD) launches is not something that be taught or a skill that can be learnt. It's an innate talent from within that requires intuition and instinct, combined with confidence and conviction.
Marlow Foods, part of Premier foods, has relaunched its Cauldron range of vegetarian food with revamped packaging design, new, improved recipes and new products. Recent additions include vegetarian ready meals such as Mediterranean Risotto and the snacks Butternut Squash Falafel Bites.
Young's Seafood has added a new bite-size product to its chip shop range: chip shop mini fillets. Made with basa (a type of cat fish) farmed in Vietnam, they have less than 3% saturated fat.
Weight Watchers from Heinz has launched two new products: a Sticky Toffee Cheesecake and Mexican Chilli meal.
In the run-up to the election, the policies of the two main parties provide mixed messages.
Calling all food scientists! Forget famous Bristolians Cary Grant, Banksy, Massive Attack and the Wurzels. It seems the food industry could have another reason to put Bristol on the map in the form of the Institute of Bio-sensing Technology.
The University of Sheffield has launched a research project that will examine how policy on the salt, fat and sugar content of foods has changed the practices of food manufacturers.
Ella's Kitchen has teamed up with research organisation RSSL's product and ingredient innovation department to launch Bakey-bakies: wholegrain oat crackers for toddlers.
There are three new caffeine-free tea blends from Two Leaves and a Bud: better morning blend with lemongrass and peppermint is designed to help tea drinkers wake up; better belly blend with ginger and fennel is designed to improve digestion; and better rest blend with chamomile and peppermint helps drinkers get a better night's sleep, according to the company.
Dietary Specials has teamed up with Tesco to launch the retailer's first range of frozen gluten- and wheat-free foods. It includes pizza, Yorkshire pudding, beef lasagne, steak pie and sausage roll.
Food prices will remain "fairly subdued", according to Siôn Roberts, chief executive of English Farming and Food Partnerships.
Cuts to reduce the £163bn fiscal deficit could undermine the next incoming government's efforts to create a more sustainable food supply chain, according to the Food Ethics Council (FEC).
There are other alternatives to using genetic modification (GM) or organic food production as a means of feeding the world, delegates at the Scottish Food and Drink Federation's annual symposium heard.
Employers have hailed the dairy industry training initiative Project Eden an 'overwhelming success'.
As it prepares to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Red Tractor food assurance scheme next month, Assured Food Standards has reported that the Red...
Training body EngineeringUK is to investigate why the UK has the lowest number of female engineers in the whole of Europe. Paul Jackson, chief executive...
National Starch Food Innovation has introduced Hi-maize wholegrain flour to its portfolio of nutritional ingredients.
Fungal spoilage of food remains an important economic issue. The production of mycotoxins by some of the organisms responsible can also present a health challenge. Monitoring and subsequent disposal of contaminated food therefore has an important role.
Nutrition Point has started a nationwide campaign to get consumers more involved its new product development (NPD) process.
Craemer will be exhibiting bespoke-sized plastic pallets, plus the 'TC' Totally Closed hygienic plastic pallet, the lightweight 'D' Plastic Pallet, Ecomax 'Dusseldorfer' the first plastic half pallet and a real solution for securing reels in transport and storage.
Cooked poultry specialist Kookaburra Foods has commissioned the first BOC Cryoline Super Contact freezer to be installed in the UK at its Peterlee factory. The new unit forms the part of the company's ongoing development programme as it adds beef, lamb, pork and other meats to its core portfolio.
JBT FoodTech displayed the latest addition to its range of flexible in-line coating systems at the Foodex show this year.
French food firm Marie Surgelés has selected Ishida to design and install a new line to weigh and pack ready meals into microwavable trays.
Baker Perkins is launching a new series of cooking systems to handle every kind of sugar confectionery. Modular units have been configured to provide an efficient, automatic solution for a wide range of outputs.
Ulrick & Short, manufacturer of functional clean-label ingredients, has helped a family-run bakery business enter new markets by reducing the fat content in its products by up to 40%.
Natural ingredients provider, Naturis has joined forces with Caremoli to introduce a premium range of stabilised wholegrains and pulses called CareGrain to the UK and Irish food industries.
Thanet Earth one of the UK's largest, most high-tech greenhouse complexes has installed CW3 checkweighers and IQ3 metal detection systems from Loma Systems.
Bristol-based Greencore Chilled Sauces and Soups has increased the efficiency of the 10 cooking vessels at the site, thanks to the use of steam processing equipment from TLV Euro Engineering.
Stemmer Imaging has been researching an automated process to check that the contents of sandwiches packaged for sale in a supermarket correspond to what it says on the label.
A new rapid one-step assay (ROSA) for the detection of streptomycin in raw milk has been developed by US company Charm Sciences. Streptomycin can inhibit the growth of yogurt and cheese cultures.
An independent laboratory study has shown that Hygiena's Systemsure products provide some of the most precise, accurate and repeatable surface hygiene testing results around.
The Dymond X-ray inspection system is capable of accurately detecting contaminated products and reliably ejecting them from the production line, according to its supplier from Sartorius Mechatronics.
S+S has launched two new versions of its Liquiscan metal detection and separation system for removing magnetic and non-magnetic metallic contamination from pumped liquids and pastes.
Endless stainless steel belt producer Sandvik Process Systems will be using this year's IFFA fair in Frankfurt (May 813) to highlight the benefits of its conveyor technology in preventing bacterial build-up during meat processing.
Soy has become a popular alternative to milk derivatives, largely due to the growing number of consumers suffering from allergies to milk components such as lactose and milk protein.
British food manufacturers and retailers can now obtain baobab: the exotic fruit from southern Africa that promises exceptionally high nutritional qualities, including twice as much calcium as milk and more magnesium than spinach.
A £4.9M five-year research project, led by the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences at Aberystwyth University, has begun to develop improved varieties of oats that will provide significant economic and environmental benefits for growers, millers, and the dairy, beef and poultry industries.
UK chicken processor 2 Sisters a subsidiary of Boparan Holdings has announced plans to acquire the Dutch-based fresh and frozen poultry firm Storteboom Group, which operates sites in Holland and Poland, as part of its plans to expand into central Europe.
Demanding a 12-month payback was "unrealistic" in the food industry for many energy-saving projects, according to Steve Allen, md of Cavendish Engineers.
Pro-pak Foods plans to expand its factory in Malton, near York, so that it can increase capacity and develop new products.
A "collapse" in demand for apples from Irish cider maker Magners has put the future of many Northern Ireland (NI) Bramley Apple growers in jeopardy.
Freight forwarding, where clients employ third-party logistics providers (3PLs)to transport goods from suppliers, is taking off as a means of reducing supply chain costs, according to transport providers.
Scientists at the Agricultural Research Service and the University of Georgia have identified incoming raw poultry, rather than the environment, as the primary source of Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) bacterial contamination in US chicken cooking plants.
Better controls of salmonella in the pig meat food chain could slash the number of human cases of salmonellosis, according to a study from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).
Malted loaf maker Soreen is sustaining its turnaround more than a year into its recovery strategy. Revenue is still rising on the back of new product development (NPD) and the growth of new sales channels, according to md Paul Tripp.
Top brewers and food manufacturers are consulting energy efficiency experts over commissioning biomass combined heat and power (CHP) and combined cooling, heat and power (CCHP) systems as well as anaerobic digesters.
"Paying recruitment agencies could be seen as money for old rope. They have probably called you, chirpily announcing: "I've got you an interview!" for a vacancy you hadn't applied to.
Consolidation, investment and automation has boosted frozen food firm Ardo, reports Hayley Brown
Norbert Dentressangle has secured £40M of new UK business and is implementing operational efficiencies in a bid to address falling international profits and sales, according to business unit director Dan Myers.
Slowly, I lower the digestive into my tea. I watch it absorb the liquid like a sponge. The extra weight combined with the now softer texture weakens its structure. This is where skill and experience are required to decide the precise moment when to pull it out from the mug. Too soon, and you are left with a dry biscuit. Too late, and the submerged part of the biscuit disappears into the abyss, turning the drink into a muddy debacle. This is about as much risk I am happy to take.
Smaller glass manufacturers and distributors have reported greater interest among premium and speciality food suppliers for custom designs and 'families' of containers.
If biodegradable and compostable packaging has been suffering as a result of a consumer shift away from costlier organics, then at least one supplier detects signs of returning confidence. Clondalkin group company Van der Windt UK is adding a series of compostable trays formed from sugar cane bagasse to its packaging range.
The arrival of fresh milk in pouches as well as polybottles opens up the prospect of alternative packaging formats for consumers with different environmental priorities.
The Food Standards Agency is planning to discuss whether so-called fat taxes have a role to play in improving the nation's diet.
Companies could save themselves large amounts of cash by the systematic monitoring and targeting of their use of utilities, which can lead them to becoming far more energy efficient, it has emerged.
With the recent hullabaloo about the EU back-tracking on nutrient profiling, I thought it might be interesting to highlight an academic paper just published online by the European journal of clinical nutrition.
Since the first quarter of 2007 until the end of 2009, launches of fortified dairy products that include vitamins and minerals or added calcium or fibre have fallen by 10%, while the trend for more 'natural' products is gathering pace, according to a leading researcher.
European consumers are looking for healthy, convenient ready meals that have not been heavily processed and are made with high quality ingredients, according to a new report.
A strong, well-known brand is no longer enough to attract shoppers in the UK, according to Adrian Williams, senior business analyst at grocery think-tank IGD.
The latest addition to Limagrain Céréales Ingrédients' snack product range is a crisp-style maize product that has a different texture on either side.
VAT on processed food is likely to be raised to 20%, whichever party wins the general election, while sterling will "remain weak", a leading economist has predicted.
Demand for UK grain for biofuels is set to increase as new bioethanol plants come on stream.
Yorkshire-based Byworth Boilers is improving its Yorkshireman2 eco-friendly steam boiler model to knock up to 18% off food processors' energy bills.
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