Source: Addo Food GroupBakeries across the country are entering the final production push ahead of Christmas Day.Addo Food Group and Birds Bakery are among those to be working ‘around the clock’ to meet the high demand for baked goods such as pork pies, mince pies and other festive treats.Production at Birds Bakery increases tenfold in December, said the East Midlands-based business, which has already manufactured and sold 400,000 minces pies, 40,000 cupcakes and 10,000 mini chocolate logs through its 61 shops this month.It expects to distribute a further 25,000 mince pies this week as consumers stock up for the big day.“December is the busiest time of the year at Birds and everyone has been working hard to deliver mince pies and baked goods across the country, in time for Christmas,” said Mike Holling, sales and marketing director at Birds Bakery.“We gear up for the Christmas orders months in advance, to make sure that we produce plenty of products. As we approach the big day the number of lorry-loads making their way to our stores, and providing our home delivery service, almost triples.”Pastry manufacturer Addo Food Group, meanwhile, has noted a 40-50% increase in its production of pork pies destined for Christmas buffets and Boxing Day feasts. It expects to distribute almost 30 million from its Tottle bakery in Nottingham in the run up to, and throughout, the festive season.“Despite being a challenging year for many, we are still experiencing very high demand for one of the nation’s favourite buffet staples,” said Deborah Bolton, CEO of Addo Food Group which manufactures products under the Wall’s Pastry and Pork Farm brands.Many retailers and bakeries have been giving festive favourites a twist this year as they look to tap into food trends. This has seen them push the boundaries of sausage rolls to make them bigger and better than before, lace baked goods with a tipple or two and even reinvent the classics.Many have also rolled out innovative sweet and savoury products as part of their seasonal ranges:Aldi goes big on festive puddingsBakery brands unwrap Christmas treats for 2020Brussels sprout cake joins Asda bakery line-upCo-op unveils Christmas bakery productsMarks & Spencer unveils 2020 Christmas rangeChristmas 2020: Ocado reveals festive bakery productsTesco expands festive vegan bakery rangeWaitrose unveils bakery rangeWhat’s in store for Christmas sandwiches in 2020?
Customers can buy ready-picked berries at Georgia strawberry farms but often opt for lower prices by picking their own. Photo: Faith Peppers Bucking a trend that has hundreds of acres of Georgia farmland moving from cultivation to subdivisions each day, Abe Banks took part of his 21 acres that was zoned for housing and turned it into a pick-your-own strawberry farm.The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that over the past five years, Georgia lost about 500 acres a day of farmland to home and business development. Banks worked with his Houston County neighbors to change land-use agreements so he and his family could grow strawberries. Those neighbors are now some of their best customers.And the Bankses should have plenty of customers this year.Strawberry Crop Good For ripe, sweet strawberries in Georgia, just look on the World Wide Web or ask at your county Extension office for the strawberry farm nearest to you. But for Abe Banks, growing strawberries is about more than making money. Banks has been tempted to sell the land. Developers could fit about 20 houses where he has his 40 rows of strawberries. But he won’t sell. The 2-acre field reminds him of the Fayetteville, Ga., farm where he grew up.”All the lessons you learn on a farm are the type of things you’ve got to have to get ahead in life,” he said.Banks teaches basic life skills to his 5-year-old daughter Sara, like learning to follow directions while looking for ripe strawberries to pick. “Red, head to toe?” she asked. “Show me,” he coached. “Red, head to toe. Let’s find another one.”Unique Berry FarmBanks bought 12 acres of the land at an auction. Later he added 9.5 acres more. Now surrounded almost entirely by houses, he has an unlikely spot for 37,500 strawberry plants to call home.”The Bankses’ farm is really unique,” Krewer said. “It’s a type of reverse urbanization.”Like many of today’s Georgia farmers, the Bankses have other jobs, too. He is an engineering manager at Robins Air Force Base in Warner Robins. His wife Janet is an operating-room nurse at a Macon hospital.To find the strawberry farm nearest you, check the Web site at www.cpes.peachnet.edu/strawberryfarms.htm or contact your county Extension Service office. Photo: FaithPeppers “The crop is looking good,” said Gerard Krewer, a University of Georgia Extension horticulturist. “The season is just starting in north Georgia, and it’s been under way in south Georgia for several weeks.”Georgia’s climate usually makes for a long season for good berries. “If it stays cool, they can last in north Georgia until July 4,” Krewer said. “In south Georgia, it usually winds down in early to mid-June. This is the peak season, so now is the time to go pick.”Berry pickers will see attactive prices for the vine-ripened fruit. Prices average $6 to 7 per gallon across the state.”Strawberries are an expensive crop to grow,” Krewer said. “But growers can get a pretty good return on their investment.” Strawberries cost about $5,000 per acre to plant, but can gross over $15,000 per acre if nature cooperates. Georgia’s 50 growers usually bring in about $3 million per year.More Than Making Money Life’s lessons are fun and sweet in the strawberry-patch “school.” Photo: Joe Courson
0Shares0000Neymar beat multiple defenders before lashing in Brazil’s opening goal midway through the second half © AFP / Oli SCARFFLIVERPOOL, United Kingdom, Jun 3 – Brazil star Neymar said he was “very happy” to have made a goal-scoring comeback in a 2-0 friendly victory over Croatia on Sunday, but insisted he was only firing at “80 percent”.“It’s been three months that I’ve been injured,” said Neymar, with the World Cup to start in Russia in 10 days. “To come back and do what I love the most, playing football, and furthermore to score a goal, is an immense joy. I’m very happy.”The Paris Saint-Germain forward appeared as a half-time replacement for Manchester City midfielder Fernandinho as the Selecao stepped up their World Cup preparations.And Neymar needed just 23 minutes at Liverpool’s Anfield ground to prove how important he is to Brazil’s hopes of a sixth world title.Receiving a pass from Philippe Coutinho, Neymar cut into the area, beating Sime Vrsaljko and Duje Caleta-Car with impressive close control and dribbling, before burying a shot into the roof of the goal, via the crossbar, from the edge of the six-yard area.But he added: “I still feel a little pain, but that’s normal when you spend so much time not walking.“I feel at 80 percent of my capacity.”After his goal, Neymar made sure to head to the Brazil bench to embrace team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar, who operated on his foot fracture three months ago.“It was to thank him. Not only Lasmar, but also Rafa and Rica (his physiotherapist and physical trainer). They’ve been there 24 hours a day with me.“I want to thank all the people who’ve been important for me.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
3 gameday who plays? How Arsenal could line up in Arteta’s first official game in charge – Ozil return? NEW ERA Leyton Orient have appealed for fans to bring their dogs to their ground to scare away a fox that is destroying the playing surface.A statement on the Vanarama National League club’s website called for drastic measures as the club race to ensure the pitch is playable for the new season, which begins on LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS predicted 3 How Chelsea could line up against Southampton – what system will Lampard play? A fox has tormented Leyton Orient’s ground staff in recent weeks How Liverpool could line up at Leicester with midfielder set for lengthy absence highlights 3 The club were relegated to the fifth tier in 2017 after a 112-year stay in the Football League.Orient‘s Breyer Group Stadium seats 9,000 people and has been targeted by the fox, which was spotted numerous times around the ground in recent weeks.A volunteer has been requested to patrol the pitch with a male dog, which is believed to be enough to keep the meddling creature at bay.The club will need the pitch ready for their first home game of the season on August 7, when they take on Ebbsfleet United. possible standings Tottenham predicted XI to face Brighton with Mourinho expected to make big changes smart causal possible xi How Man United could line up for Newcastle clash – will Pogba start? impact ALTERED Orient have two weeks to repair any damage to the turf before their first home game of the season Every Championship club’s best signing of the decade, including Taarabt and Dack How the Premier League table could change after the Boxing Day fixtures The Breyer Group Stadium has been blighted by the fox’s presence Tottenham v Brighton LIVE: talkSPORT commentary and team news for Boxing Day opener Best clips, calls and talkSPORT moments of 2019, feat Hearn, McCoist and more Every current Premier League club’s best kit from the past decade The statement reads: “A strange one we know.“The club are looking for a local O’s supporter who is able to walk their male dog around the O’s pitch during mornings and late afternoons this week at the Breyer Group Stadium.“The club have been having issues with foxes entering the playing surface at night (quite literally the only time we don’t want a fox in the box) and it is thought a dog’s presence will help prevent further pitch invasions at the Breyer Group Stadium.”Anyone able to assist the club is encouraged to contact Orient’s marketing department at [email protected]