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New products fly off drawing board.

It has been a busy year for new product development at British Bakels.

Clean Label, NutrOmega[R], Oat Bread, Legally Low, Toffee and Chocolate Sauces and Low Gi Confectionery Premix have been just a few of the products to come off the drawing board thanks to the new product development team led by Dr Gary Gibbs.

Says Dr Gibbs: "It has certainly been a hectic year and there are lots more exciting projects in the pipeline. We have an excellent track record in this area introducing products that have either been developed here in the UK or in one of the 35 countries throughout the world where Bakels operates."

New product development at Bakels is currently falling into two key categories--health and well being and premium indulgence.

Adds Dr Gibbs: "It is clear from our experience that consumers are indeed eating more healthily. They want products which are good for them and which taste great as well. However, when they decide that they are going to treat themselves--especially at weekends--they really go for it, wanting good quality, great tasting indulgent products."

It is Bakels pioneering work in healthy products, especially in low Gi bread, that is the cornerstone of its success. The company's best selling product is Country Oven Low Gi Multiseed Bread Mix which now accounts for some one million loaves of bread sold a month in the UK.

The product was developed originally in Holland by sister company Bakels Senior and was marketed as a great tasting speciality bread. British Bakels discovered it as part of a group product review, brought it into the UK and launched its most successful product ever.

And its new Lemon & Pumpkin Seed Complete Bread Mix was first developed in Australia where it was marketed under the name of Bush Tucker. It is already a highly successful product launch with a major UK supermarket group.

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The worldwide network of companies gives Bakels a real competitive edge when it comes to new product development. When the company receives a brief for a new product its first port of call is a survey of its 35 companies in the group to see if the product is already on offer elsewhere.

Adds Dr Gibbs: "You'd be surprised how often we find that a request for a new product in the UK can be met by one of our sister companies. We have been known to 'develop' a product in less than a week by going down this avenue.

We also have centres of manufacturing excellence where we can call on the expertise of our colleagues worldwide to develop specific products, along with the back up of our research centre in Australia which is at the forefront of technical development."

Bakels offers a bespoke service to its major food processing and bakery customers. The company will take a brief and develop products on an exclusive basis. Bakels will produce development samples to meet that brief and then review the work to date, changing recipes, colourings and flavourings to exactly match the client's brief. Production batches are then made before the product goes live. The process can be as swift as one week--or can take many months as did the hydrogenated fat replacement.

Bakels NPD follows the latest Joint Health Claim Initiative Committee position on allowable health claims. Says Dr Gibbs 'Though we are still awaiting the final EU list of health claims allowed, we support our customers drive for healthy products through focusing NPD on the JHCIC list thus allowing our customers to keep pace with their consumers expectations."

Bakels is building a superb reputation in health and well being. One of the factors behind the success is the excellent partnership that it has built with its suppliers.

Explains Dr Gibbs: "All main suppliers are briefed on our interest in health and well being and are involving us in their development programmes as we have a proven track record of being able to commercialise new concepts.

"We are keen to work with our customers along the same lines."
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Title Annotation:BAKELS
Publication:Food Trade Review
Date:Aug 1, 2007
Words:673
Previous Article:Sweet success for Low Gi Confectionery Premix.
Next Article:Legally Low targeted at health conscious.
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