In Other News

In Other News

Lavazza set to buy coffee arm of Mars

Italian coffee maker Lavazza is set to buy the coffee arm of food giant Mars, Mars Drinks, in a deal potentially worth around $650m (£499m), writes CityAM (October 1).

The acquisition, expected to close in December, will see Lavazza take over Mars' tabletop Flavia machines and the Klix freestanding vending machine business.

Mars Drinks employs 900 people and turned over approximately $350 in 2017.

The family owned companies have not revealed the deal value, but source close to the situation told Reuters it was likely to land around $650m.

The Mars coffee business stretches over North America, Germany, the UK, France, Canada and Japan, and helps Lavazza's strategy of international consolidation. The acquisition follows deals for French Carte Noire and ESP, Danish Merrild, Kicking Horse Coffee in Canada, NIMS in Italy and Australian Blue Pod Coffee.

The buyer said it will emphasise away-from-home coffee as it tries to grow Mars Drinks.

Lavazza Group CEO Antonio Baravalle, said: “This acquisition fits perfectly within our international expansion strategy, the objective of strengthening key markets, as well as the pursuit of having an even closer relationship with end consumers.

"Indeed, this acquisition strengthens the Lavazza Group’s position in the OCS [office coffee service] and vending segments, which offer considerable opportunities for growth and development."

Sodexo joins with Taylor St Baristas in coffee collaboration

Sodexo, the world’s largest services company, has joined forces with speciality coffee provider, Taylor St Baristas to launch a global world class quality coffee programme, putting baristas at the heart of its coffee offer, writes Hospitality & Catering News.

As one of the most sophisticated coffee markets in the world, London has been chosen as the launch market for the partnership.

The new exclusive partnership will see Sodexo offer its clients two premium quality coffee offers; an exclusive Taylor St licensed offer with an extended menu of premium quality coffees; and Chapter & Verse, a fresh new specialty coffee brand, co-developed by Sodexo and Taylor St.

Both offers boast 80+ Q-graded beans that are sourced in a way that incentivises quality throughout the value chain whilst also paying farmers prices that are typically 20-50% above those paid by Fair Trade. And all coffees are expertly hand-roasted by Taylor St.

The partnership is not just about the coffee: the partnership also includes an accompanying food menu which has been developed in line with the high quality, world-leading coffee on offer.

Sodexo and Taylor St Baristas are both passionate about their people. This new partnership enables Sodexo to offer specialty grade premium coffee, made by highly skilled baristas trained by one of the most highly credentialed coffee teams in the country.

Bartlett Mitchell, ODE-Truefood and JDW rewarded for sustainability

Catering firm Bartlett Mitchell was recognised for increasing its coffee sales by 20% while directly supporting the farmers in this year’s Food Made Good Awards 2018, the Sustainable Restaurant Association’s ethical accolades for businesses. While seaside cafe, ODE-Truefood, scooped an award for a campaign against single-use plastic.

Bartlett Michell’s bespoke, premium coffee brand has sold more than half a million cups of coffee and has helped transform the lives of the farmers who grow it, which won it success in the awards Support Global Farmers category.

Seaside café ODE-Truefood scooped the Reduce Reuse Recycle award, sponsored by Paper Round, for running a community-wide campaign to rid its village of the scourge of single use plastic.

Pub group JD Wetherspoon won the Waste No Food Award.

The winners of the 17 Food Made Good Awards were revealed at a special ceremony at FEST Camden in London. Cinnamon Club, Poco Tapas Bar, OXO Tower Restaurant Bar and Brasserie, Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen, The Good Egg and Oystermen were among the restaurants serving the 500 guests dishes created to follow the SRA’s recipe for a better food future – One Planet Plate.

Laine is first large pub company to stock Real Kombucha

Non-alcoholic fermented drink brand Real Kombucha has secured new listings across The Laine Pub Company, making it the first kombucha brand to be taken into a large UK pub chain, writes Bar Magazine.

Brewed using fermentation techniques usually found in fine wines and craft beers, Real Kombucha is made using high-end loose leaf tea and contains less than 3% sugar and under 50 calories per bottle.

Real Kombucha’s three-strong portfolio, comprising Royal Flush, Dry Dragon and Smoke House, will be stocked across 55 Laine’s pubs in both London and Brighton.

The brand aims to welcome non-drinkers back into the great British pub, as well as those looking for a sophisticated non-alcoholic option.

Gavin George, co-founder and chief executive at The Laines Pub Group, said: “We are committed to enhancing the pub experience for our highly discerning customers, so that they consistently find our offering inviting and indulging.

“The unique taste profile of the Real Kombucha range, plus the potential health benefits born of the age old fermentation process, fit perfectly with these objectives. This makes Real Kombucha an exciting enhancement to the drinking experience we offer.”

Real Kombucha’s journey began in 2016 when founder David Begg, cutting back on alcohol, found himself struggling to find alternatives. Realising that most non-alcoholic drinks were packed with sugar, he set out to find a sophisticated replacement – something that could ultimately change the way people drink.

UKHospitality warns over potential employee shortage

Following this week’s announcement that the UK’s future immigration system will prioritise high-skilled migrants, UKHospitality has warned that any such system will have a significant impact on hospitality employment.

UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls, said: “In the wake of today’s immigration policy announcement, we face mounting concerns over the future of the hospitality workforce. A system based solely on high skills and high wages will not work for hospitality where we have labour shortages. The sector employs over three million people, many of whom are migrant workers, but under the new policy 90% of these roles could not be filled under planned changes.

“Many hospitality businesses have struggled to find willing British workers and, with changing demographics and low unemployment, we are facing the very real danger of chronic skills shortages. Operators will rightly be concerned about the potential for increased red tape and bureaucracy for job applicants and there needs to be a transition period to give time for businesses to adapt.

“UKHospitality has repeatedly flagged that is it illogical to place so much emphasis on the economic worth of individuals, rather than the wider benefits they bring to the UK. We will be pressing the Government for a sensible and pragmatic lower skilled migrant worker route for the hospitality sector."

Mintel's 10 'tantalising' coffee facts

To celebrate International Coffee Day (October 1), Mintel compiled 10 tantalising coffee facts:

  • Coffee drinking is ingrained among Brits as, today, a coffee-loving four in five (79%) adults drink coffee at home.
  • Drunk by 62% of adults, instant coffee is the nation’s number one in-home coffee brew, followed by ground coffee (24%) and coffee pods (15%).
  • Keeping up appearances, as many as one in five (20%) coffee-drinking Brits say they would be embarrassed to serve instant coffee to their guests. But it is the nation’s young (aged 16-34) who are Britain’s top coffee snobs, 31% of whom would be embarrassed to serve a cup of instant coffee.
  • Jumping on the cold brew craze, a cool 32% of coffee drinkers say they are interested in making cold brew coffee at home, rising to 53% of 16-34-year-olds.
  • An essential part of Brits’ drinking repertoire, 46% of coffee drinkers admit they find it difficult to get going in the morning without a ‘cup of the brown stuff’.
  • While it's been touted as a food villain, a third (32%) of British coffee drinkers add sugar to their coffee. Meanwhile, seven in 10 (68%) users add milk or cream to their cuppa and a decadent 5% add flavour syrup.
  • The high streets may be lined with coffee shops, but a concerned 71% of coffee drinkers believe takeaway coffee cups are bad for the environment. Opting for a more environmentally-friendly approach to their brew, three in ten (30%) coffee drinkers take a thermos/flask to drink on the go.  
  • Highlighting the greener side of British coffee lovers, 83% of coffee drinkers would like coffee packaging to be fully recyclable. But, according to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), just 41% of coffee launches in 2017 carried an environmentally-friendly packaging claim. A further 45% of coffee drinkers are interested in reusable coffee pods that they can fill with their own coffee.
  • While caffeinated coffee remains the norm, a sizeable 20% of coffee drinkers have decaffeinated coffee in their diet. Overall, 18% of Brits worry about being too reliant on caffeine, while a confused 46% say it's difficult to know how much caffeine is safe to drink.
  • Keeping the nation full of beans, a quarter (26%) of coffee drinkers say they drink coffee before a workout to boost their exercise performance. And, ending on a high, 46% believe drinking coffee has its health benefits.

Anita Winter, Mintel research analyst, said: “Brits have become a country of coffee drinkers. While instant coffee is the nation’s most favoured variety, the popularity of artisan coffee shops has helped some coffee drinkers, especially younger ones, to regard themselves as coffee connoisseurs. Many consumers are even ashamed to give their guests the instant version, perhaps because they believe that some instant coffee is cheaper and therefore inferior.

“Cold brew has enjoyed an increasing profile in coffee shops, so much so that many Brits are considering making it at home. Brands can make the most of this by highlighting specific coffee variants that are particularly suitable for making cold brew and increase new usage opportunities.”

Single Source's parent firm buys CustomPack

Single Source’s parent company, PortionPack Europe, has acquired CustomPack from the Selecta Group.

CustomPack focuses on providing single portion items, such as wet sauces, dry products and portion packaging to clients from its facilities in Telford.

Single Source works with wholesalers, distributors and foodservice operators to supply a range of sachet solutions.

  • Single Source are exhibiting on stand B22 at European Coffee Expo.
  • European Coffee Expo takes places at London's Olympia on May 21-22, 2019. For stand enquiries, please contact Sukhvir Hayre on +44(0) 203 668 9809 or email

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