baker of the year

first_imgWinner: Alan PearceManaging directorWC Rowe, Penryn, Cornwall”I live and breathe bakery, and my motivation is always to improve,” says Alan Pearce, and it was this enthusiasm and passion for the industry that so impressed the judges.Pearce served his hands-on four-year apprenticeship at Rowe’s, before becoming a director and eventual MD. Over the past nine years, the originally single-shop business has grown to two bakeries and 18 shops. Its wholesale customers include Tesco (for whose Finest range it makes scones) and Morrisons (to whom it supplies cream teas). Rowe’s pasties are also supplied to Sainsbury’s nationally.Pearce explains there is a craft element to all products the pasties, for example, are all hand-crimped. “We’ve got the skill level to do it, and everyone takes pride in what we turn out.” Personally monitoring the production floor, Pearce purports to sample a scone and a pasty every day!Finalist: Robert BurnsSenior partnerBurns the Bread, Glastonbury, Somerset”You’re always learning on this job from staff, other bakers, even your customers,” says Robert Burns. “That’s why I love it so much.”Burns has been involved in bakery since he was 10. Although he trained originally to be a mechanic, by 20 he was running a bakery with his parents-in-law. He bought his current business in 1982 as “a tired high street shop” and now owns three shops with a £1.2m turnover. Able to turn his hand to accounts, plumbing and internal communications, he still “adores” handling dough and making bread and pastry.”I’m happy anywhere in my business,” he says. “I’ll dive in and turn out some sausage rolls or decorate some cakes as necessary. Everything about this industry excites me it’s what gets me out of bed in the morning!”Finalist: Chris WainwrightProduction directorCoopland & Son (Scarborough), N YorksChris Wainwright’s bakery credentials are impeccable, having trained at both Thomas Danby and Hollings Colleges and achieved his National Diploma. He managed a three-shop bakery from the age of 19, going on to open his own restaurant and café in Harrogate.When he joined Cooplands as bakery manager, the firm had eight shops and was planning a new bespoke bakery. Now, Wainwright oversees production, training and new product development across both bakeries, which supply the company’s 75 shops, five cafés and several wholesale customers.”I’m passionate about this industry both in terms of developing products and people and in baking myself,” he says. “I still roll up my sleeves and turn out loaves alongside the best of them!”last_img read more

Flies may help us understand brain injuries: study

first_imgWashington, May 21 (PTI) Using fruit flies as a traumatic brain injury (TBI) model may help researchers identify important genes and pathways that promote the repair of and minimise damage to the nervous system, a new study suggests.”Fruit flies actually have a very complex nervous system,” said Kim Finley from San Diego State University (SDSU) in the US.”They are also an incredible model system that has been used for over 100 years for genetic studies, and more recently to understand the genes that maintain a healthy brain,” said Finley.In humans, changes in mood, headaches and sleep problems are just a few of the possible symptoms associated with suffering mild TBI, researchers said.The timeline for these symptoms can vary greatly – some people experience them immediately following injury, while others may develop problems many years after, they said.According to Finley, because fruit flies grow old quickly, observing them allows researchers to rapidly study the long-term consequences of traumatic brain injury.”Traits that might take 40 years to develop in people can occur in flies within two weeks,” she said.To test whether flies can be used to model traumatic brain injuries, researchers used an automated system to vigorously shake and traumatise thousands of fruit flies.”Fruit flies come out of this mild trauma and appear perfectly normal,” said Eric Ratliff from SDSU.”However, the flies quickly begin to show signs of decline, similar to problems found in people who have been exposed to head injuries,” he said.In the study, injured fruit flies showed damage to neurons within the brain, as well as an accumulation of a protein called hyper-phosphorylated Tau, a hallmark feature of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), researchers said.advertisementInjured flies also began to experience insomnia and their normal sleep patterns deteriorated. The results suggest that studying traumatic injury in fruit flies may uncover genetic and cellular factors that can improve the brains resilience to injuries, they said.”It is really a unique model. We have developed it to be reliable, inexpensive and fast,” said Finley.TBIs occur most frequently from falling, but can also result from military combat, car accidents, contact sports or domestic abuse, researchers said.The findings were published in the journal Nature Scientific Reports. PTI SAN SAR SAIlast_img read more