CSM UK revenue dented by fall in foodservice volumes

first_imgStrong competition in the foodservice market contributed to an £11m drop in revenue at bakery supplier CSM UK last year.The company has reported £252.4m revenue in the 52 weeks ending 31 December 2018, down from £263.3m in the previous year, in documents filed at Companies House.Sales volumes had fallen, due to a combination of competition in the foodservice channel and deliberate rationalisation of the company’s product range to boost margins.CSM said the drop in volume had been partly offset by price increases that had been introduced in response to rising commodity costs, and steps to improve profitability, including product reformulation, waste improvement and costs management. The company has also cut administrative costs from £5.6m in 2017 to £2.8m last year.These moves contributed to operating profit/loss improving from a loss of £11.2m in 2017, when CSM had been badly hit by cost increases including the sharp rise in butter, to a profit of £3.3m 2018. After taxation, the business made a loss of £914,000, down from £15.2m in 2017.Looking ahead, CSM said its management team had reviewed the risks of a ‘no deal’ Brexit and had put plans in place to mitigate the potential impact.“These include preparations to comply with potential new customs formalities, to mitigate potential financial risks relating to tariff or currency risk, to mitigate short-term disruption due to supply chain disturbance, to ensure supplier readiness, and to be aware of new regulatory compliance requirements,” stated the business.last_img read more

Read More →

Cases of HPVrelated oral cancers have risen significantly in Canada study

first_imgTORONTO – The proportion of oral cancers caused by the human papillomavirus has risen significantly in Canada, say researchers, who suggest the infection is now behind an estimated three-quarters of all such malignancies. In a cross-Canada study, published Monday in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the researchers found the incidence of HPV-related oropharyngeal cancers increased by about 50 per cent between 2000 and 2012.“It’s a snapshot of looking at the disease burden and the time trend to see how the speed of the increase of this disease (is changing),” said co-author Sophie Huang, a research radiation therapist at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre in Toronto.Researchers looked at data from specialized cancer centres in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Nova Scotia to determine rates of HPV-related tumours among 3,643 patients aged 18 years or older who had been diagnosed with squamous cell oropharyngeal cancer between 2000 and 2012.“In 2000, the proportion of throat cancer caused by HPV was estimated at 47 per cent,” said Huang. “But in 2012, the proportion became 74 per cent … about a 50 per cent increase.”Statistics from a Canadian Cancer Society report last fall showed 1,335 Canadians were diagnosed in 2012 with HPV-related oropharyngeal cancer and 372 died from the disease.HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection worldwide. Most people never develop symptoms and the infection resolves on its own within about two years. But in some people, the infection can persist, leading to cervical cancer in women, penile cancer in men and oropharyngeal cancer in both sexes.Most cases of HPV-related oral cancer are linked to oral sex, said Huang, noting that about 85 per cent of the cases in the CMAJ study were men.HPV-related tumours respond better to treatment and have a higher survival rate than those linked to tobacco and alcohol use, the other major cause of oral cancer, she said, adding that early identification of a tumour’s cause is important to ensure appropriate and effective treatment.While some centres in Canada routinely test oral tumours to determine their HPV status, such testing is not consistent across the country, the researchers say.In the past, physicians generally tended to reserve tumour testing for cases most likely to be caused by HPV — among them younger males with no history of smoking and with light alcohol consumption — to prevent an unnecessary burden on pathology labs.“Only as accumulating data have supported the clinical importance of HPV testing has routine testing been implemented in most (though not all) Canadian centres,” the researchers write.The study showed that the proportion of new HPV-related oral cancers rose as those caused by non-HPV-related tumours fell between 2000 and 2012 — likely the result of steadily declining smoking rates.Huang said males tend to have a weaker immune response to HPV than do females, which may in part explain the higher incidence of oral cancers linked to the virus in men.HPV vaccines given to young people before they become sexually active can prevent infection — and the researchers say both boys and girls should be inoculated.Currently, six provinces provide HPV immunization to Grade 6 boys as well as girls, with the other four provinces set to add males to vaccination programs this fall, said Huang.“So vaccinating boys is very important because, if you look at Canadian Cancer Society statistics (for 2012), HPV- related oropharyngeal cancer in total numbers has already surpassed cervical cancers,” she said.“The increase of HPV-related cancer is real, and it’s striking that there’s no sign of a slowdown.”last_img read more

Read More →

Vancouvers corpse flower bloom fades along with its rotting flesh smell

first_imgVANCOUVER – Vancouver’s rare corpse flower, dubbed Uncle Fester because of its overwhelming stench, is no longer raising a stink.The Vancouver Park Board says the titan arum, a plant native to Sumatra and the largest flower on earth, has closed its funnel-shaped petal around its two-metre central spike as the brief bloom period draws to a close.The park board says in a statement that part of the petal is still slightly open and the red interior of the flower is still visible but the smell has dissipated.The flower only blooms a few times during its roughly 40-year life and while blooming it emits a powerful odour similar to rotting flesh in order to attract pollinators such as carrion beetles that feed on dead animals.After blooming, the huge central spike will collapse, completing the pollination cycle, although a park board official says the collapse is not expected to happen soon.About 4,100 visitors crowded through the park board’s Bloedel Conservatory in Queen Elizabeth Park on Monday, the first full day of the bloom, and the wait to see Uncle Fester was estimated at up to three hours on Tuesday.last_img read more

Read More →