Friday, 28 June 2013

Food and Drink Forum to launch new services for the catering and hospitality trade

One of the East Midlands’ key business support organisations, The Food and Drink Forum, has revealed that it is to launch a new service aimed at helping firms in the catering and hospitality trade.

Announcing the move at its flagship AGM and members’ networking supper event, The Forum announced that it hoped to soon unveil a new package of support and a membership offer specifically for the catering and hospitality part of the sector.
Support available will include new training and technical services and supply chain support, which are designed to help businesses to grow and develop. 
“The Food and Drink Forum has supported organisations across the sector since it formed in 1998, particularly those in production or manufacture. Now we will be creating tailored support for those businesses that focus on hospitality, which we believe will be useful and will encourage more catering and hospitality outlets to join our organisation,” said managing director of The Food and Drink Forum, Fiona Anderson.
Around 100 guests attended the AGM and networking supper event, which was held at Kelham Hall, near Newark. The event attracted members and associates from across Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire and Rutland.
This year’s supper was sponsored and supported by Campden BRI, the UK's largest independent membership-based organisation carrying out research and development and providing technical support for the food and drinks industry worldwide, Clegg Food Projects, a market leader in providing practical design, engineering and construction solutions for major food and drink operations, and the Food and Drink iNet, which is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and run by a consortium led by The Food and Drink Forum.
“Our AGM and members’ supper is our flagship event of the year, and once again it was greatly enjoyed by those who attended,” added Fiona Anderson.
Speakers at the event included James Pogson, director of Chesterfield-based Northern Tea Merchants, Kamal Dhutia, director at Leicester-based condiments portion control supplier B I (Europe) Limited, and Phil Ellis, from Attimo – an East Midlands online market place project which provides an easy and efficient opportunity for artisan producers and hotels, restaurants and caterers looking for high quality items to do business with each other.
For information about joining The Food and Drink Forum or the new service for the catering and hospitality trade please call 0115 9758810. 

Press release issued by Nottingham PR firm Perfect 10 PR

Self-hypnosis supports Southwell hypnotherapist through cancer

Nottinghamshire hypnotherapist Briony Clarke
A Southwell therapist is drawing on her own experiences after helping herself through cancer treatment.
Briony Clarke used her skills as a hypnotherapist to support herself through diagnosis, treatment and recovery following the discovery last year that she had breast cancer.
Now Briony is back up and running her practice, Perfect Mind Hypnotherapy in Portland Arcade, King Street, Southwell, and reflecting on how her hypnotherapy expertise has been invaluable in helping her get through her treatment.
“I would have been lost without it, I really would,” she explains. “Using hypnotherapy gave me a proactive approach to my health and wellbeing no matter what I was going through; from diagnosis, throughout the treatment and afterwards. When you are diagnosed, you go into the process and it’s all happening to you. With hypnotherapy, you have an element of control. You are contributing to your own health throughout the process. You are not just a passenger.”
Briony, 48, had worked in the food and drink sector for many years before retraining as a hypnotherapist. She launched Perfect Mind Hypnotherapy in 2011, and had been working with a range of clients, including people who wanted support to give up smoking and to lose weight, and people with anxieties, fears and phobias, including three women who had a fear of childbirth.
Briony was also approached by a consultant anaesthetist at the City Hospital, Nottingham, to become involved in a multidisciplinary pain clinic for patients. But ironically, not long afterwards, she found herself at the City Hospital as a patient, rather than as a therapist, after being diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer which had spread to her lymph nodes.
Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare and very aggressive form of breast cancer which has very few symptoms, and Briony was referred to consultant oncologist, Professor Stephen Chan. Her treatment began with six courses of chemotherapy at the City Hospital.
This was followed by a radical mastectomy and removal of the lymph nodes around her breast and a reconstruction, which was carried out at BMI The Park Hospital by consultant breast surgeon Douglas MacMillan. She then underwent 15 sessions of advanced, highly targeted radiotherapy and a further three chemotherapy treatments at the Park Cancer Centre, which had recently been opened by Cancer Partners UK.
“When you are diagnosed with cancer it feels like you wake up in a different world, and I really wanted to stay focused on my treatment. Hypnotherapy was invaluable to me, giving me the strength not to feel a victim. It started with me with managing the fear and anxiety, to controlling pain, sickness and keeping me in a positive mind frame. It is easy at such times of trauma to feel you are in free fall,” says Briony, who is married to Phil and who has two children, Kelsey, 23, and Max, 14.
“Hypnotherapy helped me to maintain a positive outlook. It was a whirlwind, but I was mentally strong.
“For me, the biggest thing was having the mastectomy, and my hypnotherapy really helped me. I’d prepared my body for the surgery and the pain control, and witnessed first-hand the benefit of hypnotherapy. Surgery is different for everyone but for me I needed very little pain control and was able to go home quickly after the operation.”
Now back at work and practising again, Briony feels upbeat for the future.
“I don’t feel damaged by my experience, I feel really positive,” adds Briony. “I’ve been reminded how easy it is for something to go wrong with your health. I’m not going to let cancer stand in my way and hold me back. One thing I’ve learned is to do things that interest me, and that I enjoy.”
She’s now hoping to help others going through the experience.
“I thought long and hard about using my personal experience in my practice but felt that I had benefited so much that I wanted to offer it to others in a similar position,” she says.
Hypnotherapy The Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC), of which Briony is a member, describes hypnotherapy as a skilled communication aimed at directing a person’s imagination in a way that helps elicit changes in some perceptions, sensations, feelings, thoughts and behaviours.
There are several misconceptions about the therapy, says Briony, but it can be useful in many different areas of life. It is used to help manage the pain associated with irritable bowel and The National Institute for Health and Clinical Guidance (NICE) recommends the NHS should consider referring patients for hypnotherapy if their irritable bowel is persistent and has failed to respond to simple prescribed medicine.
Used alongside a person’s own willpower and motivation, hypnotherapy is often undertaken to help relieve anxiety, aid sleeping, address attitudes to weight, help to address bedwetting, and support people to achieve behavioural change to stop smoking and overcome fears. It can also help with minor skin conditions that are aggravated by stress, and may also be used to enhance performance or overcome anxiety by sports people, singers and others who are involved in public speaking.

For more information visit
Press release issued by Nottingham PR agency Perfect 10 PR

Monday, 24 June 2013

Feasibility team appointed for RAF Scampton visitor attraction

Focus Consultants and Purcell architects appointed for RAF Scampton visitor attraction feasibility study.

Focus Consultants and Purcell architects are exploring the possibility of enhancing visitor facilities at RAF Scampton with a new heritage attraction and centre of excellence.

The two companies have been appointed by Lincolnshire County Council to undertake a feasibility study for the RAF base near Lincoln, which recently celebrated the 70th anniversary of the Dambusters raid carried out by 617 Squadron from Scampton.

The base has a rich and significant history and is the home of the Red Arrows, the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team. It currently houses a small heritage centre run by volunteers but now the county council is looking at the possibility of boosting the visitor facilities.

Focus, which is based at Phoenix Business Park, Nottingham, with offices in Boston and Aubourn in Lincolnshire, Holborn in London, and in Leicester, has been appointed as lead consultant for the feasibility study with Purcell providing design and architecture services. Purcell has 13 offices across the country and has recently set up a new base in Nottingham.

The study will look at whether an enhanced aviation heritage attraction and aviation centre of excellence can be created at RAF Scampton whilst it continues to be an important operational RAF base and fulfil its potential as a valuable cultural, historic and economic asset for the local area.

Heather Frecklington, senior consultant at Focus Consultants and the project manager for the feasibility study, said: “We are delighted to have been selected to undertake this exciting study and to be involved in shaping what could be a very prestigious and inspirational project.”

Alasdair Travers from Purcell added: “The historic base is still operational, acting as an air control centre, meteorological unit and home to the illustrious Red Arrows. It has many resonant stories bound up in its history including the pivotal role it played in the Dambuster raids and after the war when it was the base for one of the UK’s most important nuclear deterrents – the Blue Steel Missile. This feasibility project is a great opportunity to help shape its future.”

Work on the feasibility study has already started and will be completed by the end of September.

Focus Consultants has been involved in a wide range of museum, heritage and visitor attractions, and is currently project manager for a multi-million pound redevelopment at the National Army Museum in Chelsea. The company has also been appointed to the Victoria & Albert Museum framework to develop and deliver temporary exhibitions at the prestigious London museum.

Purcell has long-standing expertise working with culturally significant buildings and their sites. Past projects include Weston Park Museum, St George’s Hall in Liverpool and the multi award-winning Sammy Offer Wing at the National Maritime Museum in London.

The two companies are currently working together on the redevelopment of St Fagans National History Museum in Cardiff.

For more information vist
Issued by Nottingham PR company Perfect 10 PR

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Egg manufacturer Just Egg celebrates a cracking birthday

Hard-boiled egg and egg mayonnaise manufacturer Just Egg Ltd is celebrating its tenth anniversary.

The company, founded by Pankaj Pancholi in June 2003, supplies its products across the UK to major retailers, sandwich makers, Scotch egg manufacturers, and the pickling trade – with up to 1.5 million eggs going through its doors every week.

Just Egg aims to be at the forefront of developments in the industry and, when it launched, it was the first company in the UK to use a new and different type of machine to hard boil, peel and pack eggs.

It was the first to introduce ready-to-eat twin hard-boiled egg packs for the retail market, and the first to pack eggs to trade customers in sealed bags in cardboard containers to replace buckets, which reduces waste and saves cost, said Pankaj.

Now the firm, based at Hilltop Road, Hamilton Industrial Park, Leicester, is hoping to continue its diversification by launching single hard-boiled egg packs into supermarkets later this year, as it celebrates ten years of operation.

“Just Egg Ltd has become what I believe is well placed in the hard-boiled egg and egg mayonnaise industry in the UK,” said Pankaj, a microbiologist by trade who has worked in the egg industry for more than 25 years.

“When I launched Just Egg in 2003, we had no customers. I employed 12 staff and I trained them from scratch. We now employ 24 people, and some of them have been with us since day one.

“We’re excited to be celebrating our tenth anniversary, and are currently working on plans to increase our range and develop new products as we move into the next chapter.”

In addition to boiling and peeling more than 1.25 million eggs every week, the company also manufactures over three tonnes of egg mayonnaise daily in its purpose-built BRC-approved factory.

The company supplies its products to a major retailer, sandwich manufacturers, the pickling trade and whoever uses hard-boiled eggs.

“Over all the years I always thought that hard-boiled eggs could be sold in supermarkets, as a ready convenient nutritious food. That was how the twin pack hard-boiled egg was born and now it is in one of the key supermarkets under their own label and also under the Just Egg label in various convenience stores throughout the country. Continuing on the success of the twin pack hard-boiled egg, the single egg pack has been developed for garage forecourts, hospitals and airline caterers and for the ‘food to go areas’ in any convenience stores,” added Pankaj.

Last year Pankaj, who is managing director of Just Egg, teamed up with scientists at the University of Leicester to help develop a process to recycle egg shells and turn them into fillers for plastics. Funded by the Food and Drink iNet, the project has proved the technology and Pankaj hopes that one day his hard-boiled eggs will be packaged in containers that were made from plastic that contains recycled egg shells.

Just Egg Ltd has won a number of awards over the past ten years including the Most Innovative Collaboration at the 2012 Food and Drink iNet Innovation Awards for the work it carried out with the University of Leicester on egg shell recycling, and company of the year in the 2005 Leicester Asian Business Awards.

Issued by Nottingham PR company Perfect 10 PR

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Food and Drink Forum hosts SALSA approval scheme event

Business organisation the Food and Drink Forum played a part in ensuring that the SALSA approval scheme for small food and drink producers continues to run successfully.

The Forum sponsored and hosted an event to give the annual CPD – continuous professional development – session to a group of auditors from across the Midlands.

The IFST auditors are responsible for checking food and drink firms have the required standards in place before they are awarded the SALSA accreditation, which stands for Safe and Local Supplier Approval.

A food-safety standard written by experienced food safety experts to reflect both the legal requirements of producers and the enhanced expectations of 'best practice' of professional food buyers, SALSA certification is only granted to suppliers who are able to demonstrate to an auditor that they are able to produce safe and legal food and are committed to continually meeting the requirements of the SALSA standard.

The group of six auditors, including the Food and Drink Forum’s senior technical manager Richard Wigley, who is a SALSA auditor, were hosted at the Business Centre, Southglade Food Park, Nottingham, where the Forum is based.

“It was the first time we’d sponsored and hosted the CPD training at Southglade, and everyone seemed impressed with the facilities. We will probably hold it at Southglade again next year, as it’s in an ideal location and is the perfect place to focus on all things food and safety related,” said Richard, who is also a mentor for the SALSA scheme.

The CPD session updated auditors and also focused on how to achieve consistency.

The Food and Drink Forum was founded in 1998 as a not-for-profit, membership-led organisation to stimulate and support the sustainable growth and development of the food and drink industry in the East Midlands. It has members across the region.

Pictured, left to right, Richard Wigley, the Food and Drink Forum’s senior technical manager, and CPD trainer Sarah Jackaman. 

Press release issued by Nottingham PR company Perfect 10 PR

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

BSP Consulting raises a glass with business associates

Louise Duffield from Perfect 10 PR with Ian Taylor from Mansell Construction
Civil and structural engineering firm BSP Consulting staged a wine tasting event in conjunction with Nottingham independent wine merchants Weavers.
The company, which is based in Oxford Street, Nottingham, and has offices in Derby, Leicester and Sheffield, invited a number of business associates to the event.
Hosted by Weavers director Philip Trease at Weavers’ premises in Castle Gate, the evening included sampling of wines from around the world, as well as an insight into the history of the building which is regarded as one of the finest Georgian properties in the city.
“We were very pleased to invite a number of our associates and business contacts to the event, which was thoroughly enjoyable and informative,” said BSP business development director Jef Todd. “I’d like to thank Weavers for hosting such a fascinating evening.”
Among the guests were people who work in, or are linked to, the construction and associated sectors.
Weavers is one of Nottingham’s oldest independent businesses. Established in 1844 by Edward Cossal Weaver, it has been run and operated by five generations of the Trease family since George Trease bought the business in 1897. Weavers supplies wines and spirits to private, corporate and trade customers throughout the Midlands and the UK.
BSP Consulting is an award-winning civil, structural, transportation, environmental and geotechnical engineering company, which offers the complete range of consultancy services to the construction industry across the UK.
For more information visit
Issued by Nottingham PR company Perfect 10 PR