STORY: Lockdown 2.0: bakers, you are never alone
As a second lockdown in England enters its second week, Bakery Business is here to reassure you that you are not alone.
We know how hard this was last time. We know how many hours you worked, how you were understaffed, how some people were frightened and rude to you.
But we also know that you carried on undeterred, and that you are doing the same thing all over again right now. Supplying bread, yes. But it’s so much more than that.
It’s stepping up. It’s keeping communities together. Giving them someone to talk to, to confide in, to smile at.
It’s taking their bread to them when they can’t or don’t want to leave the house. It’s providing them with their other essentials too.
It’s giving out baked goods free to NHS and keyworkers ….and all this is the VERY tip of the iceberg.
You are all incredible. And you are not alone.
You have associations behind you working harder than ever before to make sure you are supported, to make sure you have everything you need – and to make sure that you are ok.
Use them. They are here for you. They really care.
Please read all the information below …and keep going. You’ve all got this. And in case it wasn’t abundantly clear, we think you’re incredible.
The Craft Bakers Association (CBA): www.craftbakersassociation.co.uk
By Karen Dear, Director of Operations
“For us at the CBA, our number one aim over the coming weeks will, as ever, be to provide the very best support and guidance to our members, so that they and the wider craft baking industry can both successfully manage the immediate challenges ahead and in the longer term, continue to thrive.
We want our members to know that they can contact us at any time for expert support and trusted advice on everything from health and safety and HR, to legal and financial matters.
Our COVID-19 management guide contains everything bakers need to navigate the pandemic from a health and safety perspective. Developed in collaboration with Safer Assured - environmental health experts in the fields of infection control and legal compliance - the guide includes information on best practice standards, risk assessment templates, customisable monitoring records and signage and more, all supplemented with personalised advice from health and safety mentors. CBA members can access the guide for free via the MY CBA section of the website, but it can also be purchased by non-members.
The bakery industry has shown great resilience so far this year and we are confident that whilst the new restrictions will present some challenges, such as a potential reduced footfall for some stores, bakers will continue to find ways to adapt and innovate, all whilst delivering great customer service, And at the CBA we will be there to help and support them every step of the way.”
The Worshipful Company of Bakers: www.bakers.co.uk
By Christopher Freeman, Master
“The Worshipful Company of Bakers is pleased and proud to support members of the baking industry through this very challenging and unprecedented period.
Being mindful of those who are in food poverty, the WCB have been providing bread and buns to food banks in London; the Shoreditch Trust and First Love Foundation in Poplar.
Sadly our annual European course this year at Richemont School, Lucerne has not gone ahead but we are hopeful that this will happen in 2021. The UK course at British Bakels has been similarly delayed until 2021. All candidates awarded a place in 2020 will automatically be able to attend the 2021 courses.
As usual, the top student at National Bakery School and University College Birmingham have been awarded the Freedom of the Company with the presentation delayed.
We look forward to supporting the ABST conference again next year.
WCB has also supported other charities including the Liveries NHS Kitchen supplying meals to front line staff.”
The British Society of Baking: bsb.org.uk
By Richard Hazeldine, Chairman
“We are acutely aware that for many people the BSB is all about the conferences and the networking opportunities that they provide. This year we have had to postpone both conferences due to COVID.
However, the committee has continued to meet and once it was clear that our second conference was to be postponed we started to look at alternative ways in which we can continue to promote learning within the baking industry. One of the ways in which we are looking to do this is to hold a programme of bakery related webinars for our members. Our first webinar took place immediately after our AGM in October. Adam Cohen of ITS presented “how to do business better - now and after COVID-19!”
On 11th November we will be co-hosting a Webinar with Mintel, who will be telling us how bakery trends will develop as we learn to live with COVID-19.
We are looking at other subjects for webinars in the new year, we have had several offers, ranging from flavour trends to apprenticeships. We will be contacting our members to see what topics are of interest and value to them.
We continue to work towards holding the 2021 Spring Conference, if government regulations allow. It will be a one-day conference on Wednesday 21st April at the Tythe Barn, Bicester.”
The Association of Bakery Ingredient Manufacturers (ABIM): www.abim.org
David Amos, President
“With a second lockdown underway the bakery ingredients sector is working hard to ensure that the supply of ingredients continues to reach its customers. The baking industry is aware of the important role that our sector plays and continues to work hard together to maintain supply levels to meet the market demand for bakery products.
Alongside the rest of the food and drink industry, the bakery ingredient manufacturers’ employees are seen as key workers and, ever since the start of the pandemic, have worked tirelessly in factories, in logistics and up and down the supply chain to ensure that the production and supply of its important ingredients is maintained.
Going forward in these uncertain times ABIM Members are proud to be working together towards one goal: being part the food industry, helping to ensure that bakery products are readily available to the final consumer.”