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AGRIMARINE | THE GOURMET KITCHEN |

December 2017

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FLAVOUR SENSATIONS: INSIDE R&D AT PEPSICO

SPRAYING

SMART BOSCH & BAYER’S AGRICULTURAL

Revolution TOP10 - Most profitable supermarket chains in the US


The source of value

Procurement executives across the globe continue to see the potential they can unlock throughout the supply chain. They understand that business today is about engaging, collaborating, adapting instantly to evolving needs, and finding new sources of value. Getting that value, however, can prove a challenge.


FOREWORD WELCOME TO THE December issue of Food, Drink & Franchise! As we head towards the end of 2017, we start the conversation with Dr Boris Buchtala, Head of Smart Agriculture at Bosch Corporate Research, to discuss how Bosch and Bayer are revolutionising the agriculture sector with start-of-the-art smart spraying technology. Next, we talk with PepsiCo’s Global R&D Manager Tammy Butterworth who tells us how new flavour sensations are made at the food and drinks giant and how the company is revitalising its Walker’s

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premium crisp brand. We’ll also be investigating the top 10 most profitable US supermarket chains which will inspire you to grow your margins. On top of this, we talk food safety with Gourmet Guardian, aquaculture technology with AgriMarine, international expansion with Criniti, and attracting leading hospitality talent with BENCHMARQUE. So, read on, enjoy, and be inspired to grow your business further. Enjoy the read!

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CONTENTS CONTENTS

F E AT U R E S

30

Criniti’s

INSIGHT

Spraying smart: Bosch and Bayer’s Agricultural Revolution

06 R&D

14

40

Flavour sensations: Inside R&D at PepsiCo

TOP 10

22 Top 10 most profitable supermarket chains in the US

50 BENCHMARQUE


CONTENTS

C O M PA N Y PROFILES AUSTRALIA 30 Criniti’s 40 The Gourmet Guardian 50 BENCHMARQUE

CANADA 60 AgriMarine Technologies Inc

60 AgriMarine Technologies Inc


INTERVIEW

SPRAYING

SMART


BOSCH AND BAYER’S

AGRICULTURAL REVOLUTION

Making the most of available arable land is a must in order to meet the demands of an ever-growing and consuming population. Dr Boris Buchtala, Head of Smart Agriculture at Bosch Corporate Research, discusses the company’s ongoing smart spraying project with crop science expert Bayer Wr it t e n by TO M WA D LOW


INTERVIEW AGRICULTURE IS, MORE than ever, a numbers game. According to the United Nations, farmers need to sustainably generate 50% more yield by 2050 if the world’s population is to be fed. Around 11% (1.5bn hectares) of the land on earth is used in crop production, roughly a third of the total land perceived to be in some degree suitable for arable farming. However, finding an extra 50% yield is not as simple as farming more land. The uneven spread, quality and potential environmental impact are all factors which lead many commentators to believe there is, in fact, very little or no land left to be cultivated. What is certain is that existing cropland simply has to be farmed more efficiently. For German multinationals Bosch and Bayer, this means developing and implementing smart agriculture solutions. Dr Boris Buchtala, Head of Smart Agriculture at Bosch Corporate Research, leads the company’s explorations in smart agriculture. At the heart of a new project with agronomy giant Bayer, he and his team have been pioneering more effective ways of using herbicides, a 8

December 2017

“We are not only thinking of spraying and reduction of herbicides. This is about wider, more sustainable farming also in fertilisation and irrigation and in conjunction with connected services” – Dr Boris Buchtala, Head of Smart Agriculture at Bosch Corporate Research


B O S C H A N D B AY E R ’ S A G R I C U LT U R A L R E V O L U T I O N

key requisite for any farming operation to become truly sustainable. “We have to think about how we can use plant protection technology more efficiently,” Buchtala says. “If we are to solve this issue, then there is a high potential for further innovations in the agriculture sector regarding herbicides, fertilisation and irrigation.” Creative clout If any two companies hold the technological and agricultural expertise to transform the concept of smart farming into a reality, it is Bosch and Bayer. Their combined annual revenue of well over $140bn also means the partnership carries the financial might to make a difference on a global scale. The current partnership is a three-year agreement that involves the joint development of smart spraying technology which can detect which parts of fields need herbicide application. “We entered the partnership with Bayer around a year ago and at this time we started to really canvass the views of the farmers and what they wanted from this,” Buchtala adds. “The first components with

basic functionality will be delivered next year to pilot customers. It is a quick turnaround, but one we are confident of achieving.” Buchtala has no hesitation in predicting a rapid uptake of the technology once it appears on the market, with Bosch intending to initially target European, North and South American and Australian markets. Milliseconds Once rolled out, the smart spraying technology has the potential to bring the agricultural numbers game up to a whole new level. From detection to application, the solution works in 300-millisecond cycles. “The first step is to record images with cameras that cover the entire operating range of the sprayer,”

Jochen Fehse Part of Buchtala’s team


PROFILE

150MILLISECONDS - THE TIME IT TAKES FOR BOSCH’S SOFTWARE TO ANALYSE CROPS AND WEEDS, ENSURING THE CORRECT SPRAY IS APPLIED

Buchtala explains. “The software recognises the different weeds in the crop and automatically selects which herbicide to spray, and which part of the sprayer to spray it from. “Our software analyses the image, including detecting whether a plant 10

December 2017

is a crop or weed and reading the soil, within about 150 milliseconds, with the spray being applied within another 150 milliseconds. The detection and application is carried out in one step, and this is unique when compared to the alternatives


B O S C H A N D B AY E R ’ S A G R I C U LT U R A L R E V O L U T I O N

on the market right now.” The rapid speed of the process means that farmers are able to apply the solution in a single crossing, saving crucial time. “We also foresee large savings potential with this,” Buchtala adds, “although we

cannot be pinpoint accurate with targets as this depends on individual compositions of fields and crops.” Farming smart Buchtala also emphasises the possible applications of this 11


INTERVIEW

50%

- THE REQUIRED INCREASE IN SUSTAINABLE CROP YIELDS BY 2050 IF THE WORLD’S POPULATION IS TO BE FED research beyond smart spraying. Bosch plans to test wireless data connections with sprayers and other equipment, opening up the potential to assist farmers with efficient planning, control and documentation of plant protection measures. 12

December 2017

“We are not only thinking of spraying and reduction of herbicides,” Buchtala says. “This is about wider, more sustainable farming also in fertilisation and irrigation and in conjunction with connected services.” As a company, Bosch dedicates


B O S C H A N D B AY E R ’ S A G R I C U LT U R A L R E V O L U T I O N

“We have a growing population which is accumulating more wealth and therefore consuming more, including meat. The direct impact of this is that you need more crops to feed the animals we are eating” – Dr Boris Buchtala, Head of Smart Agriculture at Bosch Corporate Research

around half of its research resources to developing solutions geared towards protecting the environment, and Buchtala’s agriculture-focused team forms an integral part of the company’s effort to help build a more sustainable planet with technology. Indeed, Bosch is playing a timely role in pioneering smart, economically viable solutions for farmers. A recent study by McKinsey Global Institute has found that agriculture has the lowest digital penetration rate of any industry. There are a number of reasons for this hesitancy including difficulty of use and clear evidence of return on investment, something which has been proven beyond doubt in industries such as financial services.

“We have to use available land as efficiently as possible, and it won’t be possible without these sorts of technological developments,” Buchtala says. “Arable land is becoming more and more scarce. We have a growing population which is accumulating more wealth and therefore consuming more, including meat. The direct impact of this is that you need more crops to feed the animals we are eating.” “I’m not saying we are going to save the world, but we are doing our bit to make it more sustainable.”

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R&D

Flavour sensations: Inside R&D at PepsiCo Global R&D Manager Tammy Butterworth gives the inside track on how new tastes are made at food and drink giant Pepsi, including the revitalisation of Walkers’ premium crisp brand

Wr it t e n by TO M WA D LOW


R&D PEPSI’S PORTFOLIO EXPANDS far beyond a range of iconic colaflavoured soft drinks. From Walkers crisps and Quaker porridge oats to 7up and Tropicana juices, PepsiCo is home to a wide-ranging series of brands, 22 of which net the company $1bn-plus in sales each year, helping to generate a total revenue 50% higher than that of Coca-Cola. Maintaining such a large portfolio of well-established names requires striking a delicate balance between innovation of new flavours and preservation of consumer favourites which have stood the test of time. This is no mean task, and one to which Pepsi dedicated US$760mn last year in the form of R&D activity. From China to the UK, the company’s innovation centres continue to respond to consumer lifestyle trends in order to test and develop the next wave of fit-for-purpose food and drink. Tammy Butterworth is Global R&D Manager for PepsiCo’s grains division, which primarily concerns the Quaker range of porridge oatbased products. Having moved from pet snack development at Mars to food and drink innovation at Britvic,

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December 2017

the UK bottler for Pepsi, Butterworth has been behind the launch and rebranding of several well-known PepsiCo brands since 2009. “I’ve worked closely with our snack categories as technical brand manager in charge of everything from the quality of the products to the innovation and renovation programmes,” she recalls. “Now I am in a global R&D manager role looking after innovation in our grains segment, managing the development of products that will launch globally in the UK, Western Europe, North America, China and South America.” The PepsiCo approach While Butterworth cannot disclose details of products yet to be launched by Pepsi, she can attest to the meticulous processes and consumer engagement that inspire flavour development. “Our R&D is not a case of our teams simply working on things from a technical point of view,” she explains. “We work very closely with consumers to understand


P I L O T I N G A PAT H F O R D I G I TA L I N N O V AT I O N

what a product must have and cannot have, and what the nice-tohaves are. We need to make sure the products are easy to consume and fit into people’s lifestyles. There is a huge amount of choice out there in food and drink, so it is imperative we produce products that consumers want to come back to.” But just how

much can consumers influence Pepsi’s innovation pipeline? Asked whether there is another balancing act to be had around consumer expectation and what is feasible for the company to develop, Butterworth details the need to frame conversations in the bounds of what is realistic and can be achieved with

22

– NUMBER OF BILLION-DOLLAR BRANDS OWNED BY PEPSICO

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R&D a certain level of exploration and investment. If something is not feasible, consumers will be told and presented with an alternative that may still resonate with them. This research is not exclusively carried out in-house either: Pepsi frequently strikes up partnerships with universities and external innovation partners to help ensure its offerings remain relevant. Sensations One standout project Butterworth recalls is her work on Walkers’ premium crisp product, Sensations.

Since bursting onto the market back in 2002, fast-forward to 2009 and the brand was in need of a refresh: new flavours and culinary inspiration were required. “We made dishes, went out and sampled menus, and consumers came and ate whole meals with us,” Butterworth says. “We wanted people to think about the emotional connection, going back to their coming of age years when they started travelling, drinking wine and the like. “This is where we wanted to transport people to – familiar tastes but something worth exploring. We’ll

US$760mn – INVESTMENT MADE BY PEPSICO IN R&D IN 2016

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December 2017


P I L O T I N G A PAT H F O R D I G I TA L I N N O V AT I O N

“Our R&D is not a case of our teams simply working on things from a technical point of view. We work very closely with consumers to understand what a product must have and cannot have, and what the nice-to-haves are” – Tammy Butterworth, Global R&D Manager at PepsiCo

deconstruct dishes, observe what we taste first, last and in between, and make sure we replicate that food journey in our flavours.”

The rebranding exercise worked. New flavours such as Thai Sweet Chilli helped the product range return to double digit growth. “This may not have been the biggest of projects - and some of the bigger projects I cannot discuss because they are yet to

come to market - but the smaller things that deliver immediate results are great to be a part of,” Butterworth continues. “When I go to dinner parties and people I don’t know are talking about how nice they are – that motivates you to make sure we get it right.” Fast-forward another seven to eight years, and Pepsi is once again updating the Sensations brand, recently launching Japanese

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R&D Sweet Wasabi & Ginger, Mango & Red Chilli Chutney and Chargrilled Steak & Chimichurri flavours. Time, money, space or health? These new Sensations product ranges are the result of paying close attention to trends in the food and drink space, anticipating what consumers will want to eat and drink years down the line. Walkers and Sensations may be something of a flagship PepsiCo snack, but healthier offerings have been paying the company dividends in recent times. PepsiCo now derives around 45% of its revenue from what it calls ‘Guilt Free Products’, including low-salt snacks and beverages with fewer than 70 calories. “Health is one of our key trends,” says Butterworth, “and within our portfolio we have a nutrition team, something which I sit in, which looks into what nutrition consumers are demanding and how we can produce products that contain these nutrients and food groups. “We apply this with other trends we are tracking, such as a general reduction in spare cash among consumers and a decreasing amount of time being spent on preparing and eating food. In places like London, it is becoming more common for people to live in smaller apartments, so this has to factor in as well.”

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P I L O T I N G A PAT H F O R D I G I TA L I N N O V AT I O N

“We’ll deconstruct dishes, observe what we taste first, last and in between, and make sure we replicate that food journey in our flavours” – Tammy Butterworth, Global R&D Manager at PepsiCo

A big health and lifestylerelated focus for Butterworth and Pepsi’s grains division is breakfast. Despite being readily acknowledged by consumers as the most important meal of the day, statistics point towards a downturn in people eating breakfast daily. “People are skipping breakfast and commenting that the quick grab choices out there either are not fresh and healthy enough or too expensive,” Butterworth observes. “Do you compromise on freshness, nutrition, price or time?”

Pepsi and Quaker are attempting to find the perfect answer to this conundrum, whether this be through its recently-launched fruit and oat squeeze, porridge to go bar or future innovations yet to be revealed. For Butterworth, being in a position to positively impact the health and lifestyle of consumers for the better is a key motivator. She concludes: “We are a big business and responsible for a lot of brands, so we can in turn make a big difference to the way people eat. For me, I am completely engaged and excited to be part of that.” 21


TOP 10

TOP 10 MOST PROFITABLE SUPERMARKET CHAINS IN THE

US


FDF World looked at The Balance’s list of “The World’s 100 Largest Supermarket Chains” and found the 10 most profitable in America by revenue Written by SHANNON LEWIS


TOP 10

10 Wegmans Holiday Wines - Party Perfect Wine Trio

WEGMAN’S FOOD MARKETS Wegman’s is a supermarket chain centred in New England, founded and still operated by the Wegman family. According to Forbes, it brings in $8.3bn in revenue. The chain currently has 92 stores and employs 47,000 people. It is 41st on Forbes’ list of “America’ Largest Private Companies” and ninth on its 2015 list of “America’s Best Employers.” Founded in 1916, Wegman’s is named an “East Coast cult favorite” in the latter article.

GIANT EAGLE

09

Founded in 1931, Giant Eagle is an American supermarket chain with more than 410 locations. It spans across Pennsylvania, Maryland, Ohio, West Virginia, and Indiana, with its headquarters in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Forbes places its revenue at $9.3bn. 32,000 employees work at the company, and according to its website, it serves 4.6mn “unique customers” each year. It falls at 31 in Forbes’ “America’s Largest Private Companies” list.

24 December 2017

We Set the Cookie Dunk World Record! | Giant Eagle


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TOP 10 GOLD PRODUCING COUNTRIES

HY-VEE

How To Make Healthy Sides for the Holidays

Hy-Vee began as a single general store opened by Charles Hyde and David Vrendenburg in 1930, and ultimately expanded into a chain of 240 grocery stores and drugstores across the American Midwest. It made $9.6bn in revenue last year. The chain employs 82,000 workers and sits at 27 on Forbes’ “America’s Largest Private Companies”. It has also featured in articles regarding supermarkets’ increased awareness towards health, as there is a dietician in every Hy-Vee grocery store.

SOUTHEASTERN GROCERS

07

Initially BI-LO Holdings, Southern Grocers is parent company to BI-LO, Harveys, Fresco y Mas, and WinnDixie grocery stores across several states in Southeast America. Its revenue stands at $10.5bn, according to Forbes. With headquarters in Jacksonville, Florida, it employs 66,000 people and is 25th in Forbes’ “America’s Largest Private Companies”. Harvey’s was founded in 1924, Winn-Dixie in 1925, BI-LO in 1961, and its latest venture, Hispanic supermarket Fresco y Mas, in 2016. We Set the Cookie Dunk World Record! | 2 5 Giant Eagle


TOP 10

06 Behind The Scenes With Our Holiday Host: Kristen Bell l Whole F

Whole Foods is a supermarket chain centred around the sale of organic and natural food. Forbes places its market cap at $9.9bn and the chain makes $15.81bn in sales. In the most recent third quarter, Austin Business Journal reports that Whole Foods brought in $3.73bn in revenue – 1% higher than the previous year – following a deal with Amazon. Whole Foods was founded in 1978, and currently employs 87,000 people. According to Whole Foods’ 2016 Annual Stakeholders Report, the chain is the biggest “natural and organic foods” supermarket in America, the fifth biggest public food retailer, and the 10th biggest overall food retailer. The chain also sits at 1,089 on Forbes’ “The World’s Biggest Public Companies”.

HE BUTT GROCERY

05

With 55 storefronts in Mexico and 329 in Texas, HE Butt Grocery takes the 12th place on Forbes’ “America’s Largest Private Companies”. It brings in a revenue of $23bn, according to Forbes, and employs 101,000 people at present. Around since 1905, it provides Hispanic food to Southern Central America and Mexico and is owned to this day by the Butt family.

26 December 2017

Horchata Pumpkin Pie with Cheesecake Swirl


04

TOP 10 GOLD PRODUCING COUNTRIES

PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC Publix Super Markets grew from an individual storefront in 1930, into the largest employee-owned supermarket chain in the USA. Forbes establishes its revenue at $34bn. It oversees 1,106 storefronts and 191,000 employees and has its headquarters in Lakeland, Florida. Its operations span across the America and it is currently number seven on Forbes’ “America’s Largest Private Companies”. The company distributes to all its stores as well as producing its own dairy, deli products and baked goods.

SAFEWAY INC Safeway was founded in 1915 and according to its company website, formed with the aim of striking a balance between customer value and financial expansion by maintaining a narrow profit margin. Forbes places its market cap at $8.7bn, and it brings in $37.63bn in sales. It has approximately 265,000 employees and is 521st in Forbes’ “World’s Biggest Public Companies”. Safeway has 2,200 stores in 33 states, searching to “carry the tradition M.B. Skaggs began nearly 100 years ago”.

03


TOP 10

02 DIY Pear Chips

AB ACQUISITION LLC (ALBERTSON’S)

According to the company website, Albertson’s began as $12,500 invested by Joe Albertson after his partnership with L.S. Skaggs. From that it has grown to pull in $59.7bn in revenue, according to Forbes. It employs 273,000 workers and has 13 different divisions and subsidiaries. Forbes places it at number three in “America’s Largest Private Companies”. A socially conscientious company, it has donated $270mn in financial aid and food to the 2,300 plus communities it has ties with.

28 December 2017


01 Year in Review | VIDEO | Kroger

KROGER

Supermarket chain Kroger is the world’s largest supermarket chain, revenue-wise, according to The Balance. Its revenue is $115.34bn, with a market cap at $27.3bn, according to Forbes. It is 241st on Forbes’ “World’s Biggest Public Companies”. It employees 443,000 people and has been around since 1883. It operates a variety of store types, including retail, food, and drugstores, as well as jewellery, convenience, and department stores. According to its company website, it has aligned itself with Zero Hunger Zero Waste in an effort to “end hunger… by 2025”.

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Serving Italian authenticity to Australia’s culinary market

Written by Fran Roberts Produced by Justin Nelson


AUSTRALIA

Inspired by traditional Criniti family recipes, the menus at Criniti’s combine traditional southern Italian and contemporary Australian cuisine to bring customers a unique range of flavours. Approaching the 15th anniversary of its first restaurant opening, the chain is stronger than ever

B

y 2021/2022, revenues of the Australian pizza restaurant industry are forecasted to reach approximately A$4.12bn, according to Statista. Pizza has been a mainstay Italian cuisine for over a millennium. Written usage of the word ‘pizza’ first appeared in a Latin text from the southern Italy town of Gaeta, then still part of the Byzantine Empire, in 997 AD. Similar dishes existed throughout the Mediterranean for centuries beforehand, although

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CRINITI’S

Criniti’s Southern Italian Cuisine Restaurant

modern pizza is believed to have evolved from flatbread dishes in Naples during the early 19th century. Today, traditional Italian meets contemporary dining at Criniti’s, a multi-award winner of ‘Australia’s Favourite Italian’. Criniti’s was originally established in 2003 in Parramatta, within Sydney’s west by an inspired husband and wife team, Frank and Rima Criniti. At 23 years of age, they were driven by a passion for fine quality food and cultivated success.

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Fine food Whilst fine Italian food conjures up images of pizza and pasta, Criniti’s also does a mean trade in brunches. According to Uber, Criniti’s is the third most popular spot in Parramatta for weekend breakfast. With breakfast bruschetta sat alongside more traditional options like omelettes and pancakes, it’s easy to see why the chain is a popular way to start the weekend. However, one of the most popular


AUSTRALIA

Criniti’s was originally established in 2003 in Parramatta, Sydney’s west by an inspired husband and wife team, Frank and Rima Criniti

and traditional dishes at Criniti’s is the Pizza al Metro. The large pizza comes from an old Italian tradition dating back to the early 19th century from Vico Equense located near Sorrento. The Pizza al Metro phenomenon soon spread throughout Italy and Europe and pizza at Criniti’s restaurants is made from a wood fired crust and is so big it is served on long wooden boards in half metre, one metre, two metre and three metre lengths. The Pizza al

Metro is made to share and often comes with a challenge, such as the ‘2 Mates, 2 Metres’ challenge, where two people have an hour to eat two metres of pizza. Southern Italian way of life The company’s philosophy since the first restaurant was opened is to provide dishes that convey the southern Italian way of life through the same aromas and tastes experienced by generations of the Criniti family.

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A N T I PA S T I

C U R E D M E AT S

& SMALLGOODS

local & glob al pr o duc t s

highe s t s t andar ds of qualit y

de dicate d cus tomer s er v ice

b e sp oke s our cing & manuf ac tur ing

established since 1997

QUA LI T Y {&} S E LEC T I O N

Since 1997 at Visco Selected Fine Foods we are committed to sourcing & manufacturing quality food products for our customers & providing them with the highest level of service.

www.viscofoods.com/register

+61 7 3393 3553

info@viscofoods.com

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AUSTRALIA

The Parramatta branch was the Winner 2011/2012 for Casual Restaurant & Family Dining at the Entertainment Gold Awards Frank Criniti’s parents grew up in Italy before migrating to Australia in the 1960s, where they continued the tradition of having a vegetable garden in the back yard and making everything they ate the traditional way. An abundance of tomatoes meant napoletana sauce was prepared daily. Just like those family meals from the early days in Australia, food preparation and preservation remain

central to the Criniti philosophy of establishing traditional Italian eateries. This Italophilia is reflected in the décor at the eight Criniti’s restaurants in New South Wales and Victoria, with the original Parramatta site featuring a Ducati motorbike on the bar as well as a portrait of possibly the world’s most famous Italian-American, Frank Sinatra. Similar touches can also be found in the chain’s other locations.

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CRINITI’S

Impressive growth Although the expansion of Criniti’s was truly cemented in 2009 when the chain opened a second Sydney location, this time in the east, in Darling Harbour, the company’s impressive growth had begun to show some time beforehand. The original 70-seat restaurant in Parramatta was so popular that Criniti’s needed to purchase the adjacent patio to add another 150 seats. Following on from that, 10 years after launching, Criniti’s made the

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step outside of its home city of Sydney, establishing a restaurant in the Melbourne suburb of Carlton. A smart choice, given Melbourne’s long Italian history, counting Milan as a sister city and even boasting a Little Italy cultural precinct in Carlton. The Italian community of Melbourne is the second largest ethnic group in Greater Melbourne, second only to the Anglo-Celtic Australians ethnic group. The 2011 Census counted that of the 185,402 residents that were born in Italy who live in Australia,


AUSTRALIA

Criniti’s Metro Mania Challenge

68,823 lived in Melbourne, which was the highest percentage in the country at 37.1%. The same could be said for the total Australian population of Italian ancestry, with 279,112 of the 916,121 (30.4%) listed as Melbournian residents, which is the highest Italian population in Australia and the Oceanic continent per city. Moving upmarket ‘When you’re here, you’re family’ – a company motto illuminated on the wall in neon red at Darling Harbour,

and one that illustrates the culture at Criniti’s. The chain is certainly popular with families – the Parramatta branch was the Winner 2011/2012 for Casual Restaurant & Family Dining at the Entertainment Gold Awards – but it also manages to attract a more exclusive clientele. Criniti’s has locations in some of Sydney’s trendiest dining precincts, such as Woolloomooloo Wharf and Manly. The opening of the Woolloomooloo venture signalled a desire by the family to take the chain upmarket, and the

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CRINITI’S

Criniti’s Southern Italian Cuisine Restaurant

‘The company’s philosophy since the first restaurant was opened is to provide dishes that convey the southern Italian way of life through the same aromas and tastes experienced by generations of the Criniti family’

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December 2017


AUSTRALIA

venue fit-out is as ambitious as the business itself, with, among other adornments, a Ferrari engine in the private dining room and two Ducati motorbikes dangling from the ceiling. Woolloomooloo certainly attracts an upmarket crowd, with Russell Crowe breaking the Sydney apartment record at the time of A$14mn in 2003

for his penthouse. Looking ahead, Criniti’s is hoping that its success and wide-ranging appeal will translate overseas as the chain looks to expand internationally, with Dubai, New York and Los Angeles rumoured to be the site of the first Criniti’s restaurant outside of Australia.

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Guardians of the

and

food health

safety world

The Gourmet Guardian guides food businesses seamlessly through the previously difficult HACCP Certification process to achieve maximum food safety

Written by Dale Benton Produced by Justin Nelson


T H E G O U R M E T G U A R D I A N P T Y LT D

A

s a food manufacturer, food distributor, chef, or a food business owner, ensuring that your food product is of the highest level of quality has always been important, however making sure that it is to highest food safety standard is also the key. In Australia, The Gourmet Guardian does exactly that. The Gourmet Guardian has a growing portfolio of hotels, restaurant groups, catering companies and food manufacturers across the entire Australian continent (as well as in Fiji), providing cost effective and practical food safety solutions including Food Safety Programs, Food Safety Audits and a comprehensive range of accredited and non- accredited food safety training courses. Heading up the company is Mr Gavin Buckett, the Founder and Managing Director of The Gourmet Guardian. A man who, as a chef by trade, soon discovered that his passion for food took him beyond simple cooking and preparation. “In my last role as a sous chef at the Melbourne Exhibition and

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December 2017

Convention Centre, I was heavily involved in the internal food safety auditing and HACCP side of the business and I actually ended up enjoying that side of the work more than the cooking itself,” he says. While still cooking, it was quite literally back to school for Buckett, earning a Diploma in Food Technology and a further Diploma in Confectionary Manufacture. After another six months, gaining the necessary approvals and qualifications, Buckett re-entered the food industry in 2004 as an approved Food Safety Auditor. “When I finished my Diplomas I really envisioned working for an auditing company, doing regulatory audits and going into business and assessing against certain global standards,” says Buckett. “But The Gourmet Guardian has become much more than that. While we do conduct regulatory audits when needed, but now spend most of our time working side by side with a food business to look at what they are currently doing, then we help them make their product and processes safer, helping them achieve global


AUSTRALIA

Gavin Buckett and Angela O’Brien-Buckett (Directors)

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T H E G O U R M E T G U A R D I A N P T Y LT D

food safety certifications including HACCP, BRC, WQAS and FSSC 22,000. The certifications not only make their products safer, but also enables them to grow as a business.” One of the most important certifications in order for a food manufacturer or distributor business is the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) Certification. This is an internationally recognised preventative management system that analyses the physical, chemical and microbiological hazards in their business - from raw material production, procurement and handling through to preparation, manufacturing, distribution or consumption. It becomes clear then - No HACCP Certification, no business security and Buckett, through his practical experience working in kitchens (on the other side of auditing), understands the challenge of working in and managing a kitchen whilst obtaining HACCP Certification. “A lot of people have negative feelings towards the HACCP. They think that it’s a difficult timeconsuming process, that involves a

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December 2017


AUSTRALIA

The Gourmet Guardian consists of a team of six people providing three main services to the food industry 1. Internal and external food safety audits 2. The development of customised food safety programmes and 3. Food safety training lot of paperwork,” he says. “Some people actually go as far as saying that HACCP actually stands for “Hire A Consultant to Confuse People!” or “Have A Cup of Coffee and Panic!” “What The Gourmet Guardian do is demystify HACCP, to break it down into simple manageable chunks. We then guide our clients through our tried and tested 11 step HACCP Certification process, so that we can guarantee that they receive HACCP Certification in the end.” The key for Buckett is in the client relationships that the company has

developed across Australia, and more recently, internationally. “We work with all kinds of food businesses, manufacturers, hotels, resorts, catering companies, fast food chains – you name it,” he says. “With each one we provide a tailored service. We are based in Melbourne but we travel all over Australia on a regular basis, as well as Fiji. “There really is no limitation as to who we can help, it’s all about helping anyone that needs help and more importantly wants help.” In the food safety space, there is no

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T H E G O U R M E T G U A R D I A N P T Y LT D

“There really is no limitation as to who we can help, it’s all about helping anyone that needs it” – Gavin Buckett, Founder and Managing Director of The Gourmet Guardian

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A summary of what makes up The Gourmet Guardian’s HACCP qualification

shortage of clients that require the guidance and support of The Gourmet Guardian, but this brings about a particular challenge, one that Buckett continues to work hard to overcome on a daily basis. Buckett believes that a number of clients and customers seek out the support of The Gourmet Guardian because they feel they have to, through a warning or even a compliance failure. “There’s an old adage of prevention being cheaper than the cure and it’s very evident in this space,” he says. “People often don’t feel happy to invest in the areas where customers don’t see and that’s a real challenge for us.” This is where Buckett’s hands on

experience on the other side of the kitchen counter comes into play, as when he connects with a client he has that understanding of the working environment - he’s lived and breathed it. He can see where the costs are and, more importantly, where the savings can be realised. That’s what his vision for The Gourmet Guardian boils down to, helping clients see not only the benefits of having the right accreditations and certifications, but the significant cost savings now and in the future that the company can help them achieve. Naturally, this cost aversion sees potential clients look elsewhere.

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T H E G O U R M E T G U A R D I A N P T Y LT D

“There are others who claim to offer a similar service to what we do, but they will do it at a third of the price and frankly the service suffers. A few cut and pastes, and the client is ripped off. What you pay for is what you get. If you’re willing to cut corners, then the costs further down the line will be inescapable,” says Buckett. As The Gourmet Guardian continues to grow and expand with

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a service offering that is successful, Buckett is all too aware that the company cannot rest on its laurels and must continue to adapt and respond to the changing demands of new clients in different capacities. This is why The Gourmet Guardian is a member of the Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology, the Allergen Bureau, the Café Owners and Barista’s Association of Australia


AUSTRALIA

Gavin Buckett and Angela O’Brien-Buckett (Directors)

(COBAA) and the Food Safety Information Council. In fact, in news just to hand, Gavin Buckett has been asked to join the board of the Food Safety Information Council. We never stop learning and staying up to date. “Every new client or job, we view it as a new challenge,” says Buckett. “We don’t apply a cookie cutter approach. We look at what

the business needs in order for them to succeed and we shape our offering around that. It’s all about trying to develop the right individual solution for a client, using what we’ve successfully delivered over the past 15 years as a foundation.” Can you really afford to trust anybody else with the safety of your business?

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RAISING THE


Marlowe Bennett is the CEO of BENCHMARQUE, a best-practice hospitality employment business with a difference. He explains how he plans to boost the industry with 100,000 inspired people by 2020 Written by Niki Waldegrave Produced by Justin Nelson


BENCHMARQUE

isn’t your typical recruitment agency, and its CEO Marlowe Bennett is a man on a mission - to attract more than 100,000 personalities into hospitality and events jobs over the next three years. The 10-year-old business not only matches a passionate workforce with its clients – which range from five-star hotels to publicly listed companies across Asia Pacific – it also manages the employment needs of a struggling industry, turning positions into positive careers, steadily steering workers to the top. “We have very high expectations,” says Bennett, “and we foster and deliver truly great service to our employees and candidates. Much the same, these people are then expected to deliver to guests and customers when they work on the front line. “Our environment is very much ‘treat others like you would like to be treated yourself’, and we focus on positive employment experiences to candidates, showcasing the benefits of what their careers may be like, and the lifestyle they can achieve.” It’s a modern approach to bridging the gap and providing the timeline and unique journey from entry level positions to more senior positions, ensuring workers enjoy an interesting and achievable work-life balance. “Everyone has a unique story,” Bennett adds. “There are people in the industry that started out washing

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BENCHMARQUE

dishes and now own their own venues, earning well over six figures. It’s important to showcase these stories. It isn’t always easy, it’s a long road – however, it is possible.” Bennett made his first foray into hospitality 23 years ago after his own positive employment experience in guest services at the swanky Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Double Bay. Since then, he’s worked in some of Sydney’s top establishments. He founded BENCHMARQUE in 2006 after spending four years as Assistant Operations Manager, Functions and Events at The Establishment Hotel in Sydney, which is part of the Justin Hemmes-owned Merivale group. “I had a really positive employment experience there and realised that with the casual staffing model, I could work with a business like this, and provide a more unique and tailored service,” he claims. “It all comes back to providing the best service in employment services to our candidates and our partners.” BENCHMARQUE currently turns over $9mn annually and

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has 15 full-time staff, mainly people & culture administrators, coordinators and management, scheduling approximately 40,000 shifts annually for the 400+ front of house hospitality workers through its workforce management and labour hire solutions. “We’re fortunate to have a passionate, engaged team,” he admits, “and it starts with hiring the right people who have worked in the positions we service. My mantra for anyone employed internally, is that they must come from an operations background in hospitality. “They must be able to walk the walk, talk the talk, and have empathy for our front-line staff, candidates and clients to understand intimately what their daily challenges are.” He says one of the industry’s major challenges is a forecasted critical skills shortage of 123,000 people by 2020. “The restaurant industry is going through significant growth,” he adds. “Every restaurant in Sydney is desperate for staff at all levels, especially skilled waiting staff, beverage staff, chefs.”


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“There are people in the industry that started out washing dishes and now own their own venues, earning well over six figures. It’s important to showcase these stories” – Marlowe Bennett, CEO, BENCHMARQUE

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BENCHMARQUE

BENCHMARQUE | Let Us Inspire You

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Believing transferable skills are key, BENCHMARQUE conducts four-hour interviews with entry level recruits, and regularly provides between two to four hours of free training to assess their skills and give tips. BENCHMARQUE partners with tertiary colleges such as Kenvale Hospitality and culinary and events schools to talk to graduates about the benefits and real-life examples of successful and achievable careers in hospitality. It also partnered with the Youth Jobs PaTH programme in September, which combines work experiences with a work trial, training and wage subsidies. “The program aims to provide the longer-term unemployed youth with job opportunities,” adds Bennett. “We’re very focused on inspiring them at a young age, and giving them the opportunity to explore back office administration while allowing them the exposure to see what powers the industry.” Bennett’s mission is to inspire 100,000 people to commence and grow their professional careers by 2020 via a new, secret initiative

he’s working on, transitioning the workers into the industry with the correct skillset. “We want to be the first thought when it comes to providing effective and proven solutions to the industry skill shortage by focusing on the long term, not just the short term,” he explains. “We’re on target to lead the market in this space and provide tangible and realistic solutions to the engagement and skills challenges we all are experiencing, and we aim to nurture these candidates throughout their career by providing positive experiences. By doing this, we begin to create a large network of young professional hospitality enthusiasts to meet the ongoing demands across the country over the next decade.” Two years ago, Bennett discovered engagement was quite low across the industry, so set about researching millennials and what drives them. “They crave mentorship,” he reveals. “They want to look up to someone, be inspired by something, be a part of something positive and to add value.” Ultimately, what BENCHMARQUE

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BENCHMARQUE

“We want to be the first thought when it comes to providing effective and proven solutions to the industry skill shortage by focusing on the long term” – Marlowe Bennett, CEO, BENCHMARQUE

“THERE’S A SHORTAGE OF TRAINED CHEFS AND HOSPITALITY STAFF IN AUSTRALIA” LUKE MANGAN Hear from food and hospitality industry leaders: Luke Mangan - The Inspired Series Marlow Bennett - BENCHMARQUE Ty Bellingham – Lime Hospitality Cherie McGill – Mantra Group about attracting staff, retaining your workforce and accessing incentives to plan and prepare for the future. Tuesday 31 October | 4:30 pm to 7:00 pm | Sydney CBD RSVP Essential ivvy.com.au/event/Hosp17

jobactive.gov.au/path

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Candidate recruitment includes thorough skills assessment, a differentiator in the industry

aims to do is provide staff with a positive emotional connection to employment in hospitality. “Our brand values are to inspire others, grow through learning and lead by example, and if we’re not providing this to everyone that we work with, we won’t be successful in our mission. “Success, to me, isn’t measured in how much money you have – it’s coming full circle and appreciating you’re making a difference, influencing and inspiring other people to do great things for themselves.”

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AgriMarine Canada’s

AQUACULTURE INNOVATOR Written by Fran Roberts Produced by Aquarius Rougely


AGRIMARINE TECHNOLOGIES INC.

Canada-based AgriMarine has developed innovative aquaculture technology for finfish farming. COO Rob Walker discusses how the company’s systems can combat the twin challenges of sea lice and toxic plankton blooms

A

quaculture, probably the fastest growing food-producing sector, now accounts for nearly 50% of the world’s food fish, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). AgriMarine Technologies Inc. (ATI) is looking to leverage on this growth by creating, innovating and building the most advanced marine-based aquaculture systems in the world. “In the early days, we were net cage farmers off the west coast of Vancouver Island. We also ran a large hatchery, a processing plant and a small truck fleet. Through a number of circumstances, mostly natural factors, we ended up losing our farms and eventually closed the processing plant. We got involved in the enclosed system farming business in the year 2000,” states Rob Walker, COO. “We didn’t want to leave the farming industry behind; we really liked what we were doing but wanted to find a better way, so we began looking at containment systems for the farm. We ran a project on land actually – a pump ashore system – for about five years, and learned an awful lot about containment farming.

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“It’s been a really exciting time. Aquaculture generally is a fascinating business, no one day is like any other” – Rob Walker, COO, AgriMarine Technologies

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AGRIMARINE TECHNOLOGIES INC.

In 2013, the company acquired a freshwater farm in Lois Lake, British Columbia, installing six container systems there.

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Unfortunately, that facility was very expensive to run and was not sustainable. We were able to take the design concepts and transpose them into marine containment facilities. This enabled us to dramatically reduce the energy required to move water.” It is these marine containment facilities that ATI manufactures today, although the development process has not always been smooth. “Our first installation was in northern China, near a town called Benxi and so we created our systems there in a reservoir. They worked quite well and we had a further system built and installed in British Columbia, where we reared chinook salmon, and that actually worked very well,” advises Walker. “Although our first experience with the ocean tank was excellent from a husbandry perspective, it didn’t end well. We had a series of storms that winter that were pretty brutal and it finished off with a hurricane strength storm that actually put a crack in the tank so we opted to remove the tank from the water.”

Despite this, the crack proved to be an excellent opportunity for ATI. “It was a perfect learning experience and we were able to take everything that we learned and do a complete redesign. We then built a series of tanks that are far more robust and able to handle that level of stress from the natural environment,” Walker notes. Excellent location In 2013, the company acquired a freshwater farm in Lois Lake, British Columbia, installing six container systems there. Two more systems have also been exported to Norway – one of which has been running for four generations

US$12mn AgriMarine Technologies Inc. Annual Revenue

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CANADA

of fish. ATI will have the second one in the water towards the end of 2017. “It’s been a really exciting time. Aquaculture generally is a fascinating business, no one day is like any other,” advises Walker. As well as having its company origins in British Columbia, the province provides the perfect setting for ATI’s business. “It’s an excellent location. For example, the industry here actually started in an area called the Sechelt Peninsula, which is just north of Vancouver, and the water there was thought to be good for a number of reasons, it’s warm and protected and close to the markets,” Walker notes. “However, it turns out for net cage farming it really wasn’t that good. There are a lot of plankton blooms in that area because of the warm summer temperature and the lack of flow in the water. The industry learned to move away from that area to more rugged water further up the coast and it’s continued to grow from there. The AgriMarine containment technology is ideally suited to this type of environment.”

Robert Walker, COO, AgriMarine Holdings Inc. Mr. Walker has extensive experience in logistics, sales and marketing, procurement and regulatory compliance, having worked with AgriMarine since 1993 in a variety of positions, and in the seafood distribution industry as a senior manager with responsibility for sales and purchasing. Mr. Walker holds a Master of Business Administration from Royal Roads University, where he focused on Executive Management with a specialization in Leadership Studies.

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AGRIMARINE TECHNOLOGIES INC.

Toxic blooms Plankton blooms negatively affect fish in three different ways – mechanical irritation, producing toxins and lowering the dissolved oxygen in the water column – leading to high mortality rates of the fish. “The reason we lost our farms on the west coast of Vancouver Island to begin with was because of plankton,” Walker observes. “We could not protect our fish from natural elements and toxic plankton blooms. Every few years we’d grow our inventory – it takes 18-24 months to grow inventory – and then along came a plankton bloom that killed everything. “We really wanted to find ways around that. Our system as it’s designed currently is able to do that. We have the capacity of drawing water from depth to modulate temperature and avoid plankton. This works in both fresh and salt water environments.” Ahead of the curve As well as avoiding toxic blooms,

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this system also helps to avoid sea lice. Sea lice are marine ectoparasites (external parasites) that feed on the mucus, epidermal tissue and blood of host marine fish. “It’s big news here and we have never had a sea lice issue in our systems, either the pump ashore or the marine systems that we’ve had in play. We believe it’s because the sea lice live primarily in what’s called the phototropic zone, which is the light-enhanced area of the water that goes down 12-15m below the surface. So, by drawing water from 30-40m below the surface, we are able to avoid the majority of sea lice,” Walker states. A low energy pumping system, combined with a proprietary deep-water oxygenation system creates an optimised and healthy environment for the fish. When ATI first introduced this technology, many in the aquaculture business were sceptical. “It wasn’t that long ago that most people in the industry felt that we were heading down the wrong path,” explains Walker. “When you look


CANADA

Sean James Wilton, VP Business Development, AgriMarine Holdings Inc.

Stephen Robinson, General Manager, AgriMarine Technologies Inc.

Mr. Wilton has worked for AgriMarine since 2004 and has been involved in many aspects of the environmental engineering, construction and aquaculture industries for over 17 years. His engineering experience encompasses a multitude of designs, from complex municipal water systems to the most advanced fish hatchery systems in the world and the largest cold-water fish hatchery in North America. Mr. Wilton is an aerospace engineering graduate from the Canadian Forces School and holds a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering from the Royal Military College of Kingston.

Mr. Robinson has significant salmon aquaculture farm management experience, including project planning, designing and installing automation control systems, sampling, and designing IT systems. Mr. Robinson has worked for AgriMarine since 1994 and currently acts as General Manager and Senior Manager of Design and Technology for AgriMarine’s marinebased solid-wall containment finfish aquaculture systems. Mr. Robinson has designed and installed control and monitoring systems for pumps, oxygenation, and waste water treatment and has conducted environmental field monitoring and background surveys in pursuit of prospective freshwater and marine aquaculture licenses.

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at what’s going on in Norway right now and the literally hundreds of millions of dollars being spent on the design of new floating closed containment systems, we’re obviously way ahead of the curve and I think we continue to be.” Indeed, ATI believes the

system was the first marine-based closed containment system to be certified under the Norwegian NS9415 construction standard. With ATI already ahead of the competition, the future certainly looks bright for the firm in this fledgling industry sector.

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Aquaculture, probably the fastest growing food-producing sector, now accounts for nearly 50% of the world’s food fish

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Food & Drink Franchise - December 2017  

Food & Drink Franchise - December 2017  

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