Doughnuts at the Movies

We may only be a few months into it, but 2022 is proving to be a big year for Simply Doughnuts. For example, we’ve recently opened up a number of important new export markets, including Germany and several Gulf states. And interestingly, the opportunities aren’t just restricted to major supermarkets, distributors and wholesalers.

A potentially exciting new sector for us is the cinema concessions market. We’re seeing growing interest here – and with good reason. Supplied in convenient re-closable cartons, our fresh doughnuts are low on mess, great for sharing and ideally suited to the needs of hungry movie-goers.

Commercially, too, they’re very well suited to the needs of cinema-based food retailers. As ever, their long shelf-lives are a big advantage. They minimise food-waste risks and, because they require neither refrigeration nor heating on-site, they enable retailers to make valuable savings on energy and staff time. They can be displayed at ambient conditions and require minimal preparation; making them a simple “pick up and buy” option.

Helpfully, the cartons also fit very neatly into the cup-holders that many cinema chains fit to their seating, so they could hardly be better suited to the demands of the market.

It’s a market we’re actively looking to develop so watch this space for further news.

Doughnut carton on a row of cinema seats


Shortlisted for Made in the North West 2022

On 31st March 2022, Insider Media announced that Simply Doughnuts had made the finals of the Made in the North West manufacturing awards 2022.

We have been shortlisted in the Sustainable / Ethical Manufacturer Award category, on the strength of our waste-saving innovations and investments, and our efforts to create training and employment opportunities for people within the region.

Insider editor Simon Keegan congratulated all the shortlisted companies and said: “Manufacturing is pivotal to the North West economy, and the region’s manufacturers remain among the most innovative and dynamic in the world.”

Responding, Simply Doughnuts’ managing director said: “I’m very pleased that we’ve been shortlisted for our efforts in terms of ethics and sustainability. These are subjects that we take extremely seriously, and we’ve made important progress in both areas over the last 12 months.

“We’ve continued our R&D efforts regarding extending shelf lives and we’re now achieving around 34 days with our improved processes. We’ve also found ways to produce less waste-water during production, to reduce in-house energy consumption, and to reduce the road-miles involved in our inbound and outbound logistics. By working with our waste management contractor, we’ve also managed to divert 100% of waste from landfill.

“On the ethical side, we’re continuing to work on publicly-funded projects that promote employability skills; we’re creating work experience placements, helping people with mock interviews and actively recruiting people through DWP schemes in order to help them get a first foot on the career ladder. We’ve also recently become members of Sedex, an organisation that helps companies to improve their performance in terms of labour rights, health & safety, the environment and business ethics.” (See separate news article.)

The Awards are now in their tenth year. The final will be held on Thursday 5th May at the Lowry Hotel in Manchester.


Supporting Cash for Kids Fundraiser

Lancashire-based Farleys Solicitors LLP are regular supporters of worthy causes and on Friday 11 March, they held a St. Patrick’s Days event to raise funds for Cash for Kids. As part of their planning for the event, they had previously contacted us and asked if we would be able to support them by providing prizes for the auction or raffle.

We were happy to help and duly provided two boxes of doughnuts, which reportedly “went down a treat.”

The event went very well and, in all, raised £6,500 for the charity. The Farleys Team wrote to say:

“This is by far a record-breaking total. The funds will be going straight to Cash for Kids to help them continue with the vital support they offer to disadvantaged children in Lancashire. With the current cost of living crisis, it cannot be understated the impact these funds will have.”

Cash for Kids is a grant-giving charity based in the UK. It seeks to improve the lives of disadvantaged children and young people who may have additional needs, or who may be affected by poverty, illness or neglect.

The charity wrote to Farleys, noting:

Cash for Kids asked us to pass this message on:

“This (donation) means we can directly support 182 children and their families through our emergency fund helping them to put food on the table and heat their homes.

“To all the guests, thank you so much for supporting our charity and helping to support disadvantaged children and young people in our local area. The money raised cannot happen without you and your kindness.”


Rising Fuel Costs: How Longer Shelf-Lives Help

The rising costs of fuel and energy have been big news lately, and all the indicators suggest that prices are only going to get higher in the months ahead. For retailers, this presents a problem in terms of pricing and profitability, but it’s a problem that long shelf-lives can help to solve.

Refrigeration Costs

Our products achieve their 30-day shelf-lives at ambient temperatures. They don’t need refrigeration or freezing at any stage. This immediately removes one significant source of expense – i.e. the electrical energy required to keep products cold.

A report in 2020 by the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation estimated that “The refrigeration systems in a supermarket account for between 30% and 60% of the electricity consumption, whereas lighting accounts for between 15% and 25%.” Clearly, then, by reducing the need for refrigeration, retailers could make sizeable savings on their energy costs.

Associated with this is a saving on staff time and labour costs. Simply Doughnuts’ products can be taken straight from the delivery vehicle and displayed on the retail shelf. They require no extra time for freezing, thawing, preparation or frequent stock-rotation.

Transport Costs

The saving here is twofold. First, longer shelf-life products can be delivered less often but in larger quantities, a capability that greatly reduces the number of delivery journeys required. That in itself yields a large saving on road miles, vehicle emissions and fuel costs.

The second saving arises from the fact that refrigerated vehicles are heavier and less fuel-efficient than ordinary vehicles that deliver product at ambient temperatures. A study by Brunel University’s Centre for Energy and Built Environment Research has estimated that using refrigerated vehicles consumes, on average, an extra 2 litres of fuel per hour. It reports that “the fuel consumption of the refrigeration unit will be approximately 8% of the total fuel consumption of the refrigerated vehicle.”

A Specialist Supply Chain

Looking at the whole-lifecycle impacts of our products, another benefit arises from the fact that we prioritise local and regional suppliers wherever possible. (For example, we source packaging from Greater Manchester rather than overseas.) In this way, we minimise the road-miles associated with production and, consequently, our products are better insulated against price increases driven by rising fuel costs.

Please see our For Retailers page and our Sustainability in Action page for more details of waste-saving and energy-efficiency benefits.


Our New-Look Website

As you may have noticed, we have given the Simply Doughnuts website an overhaul. It went live on 1st March 2022.

Our aim was to create a site that better reflected our uniqueness, and our increasing scale and capacity. We also wanted it to give a clearer sense of our ethos. As a result, we now have dedicated pages that explain the benefits that retailers can expect from our long-life products, our work in international markets, and our ongoing efforts to minimise waste.

The new site also showcases a recent change in our corporate branding. We hope you’ll agree that the new colours, graphics and photography give a better impression of our products and modernity.

We’ll be expanding the site in the coming months, with new stories, case studies, new product launches and more, so please remember to keep checking back in with us.


Visit by Bobby’s Foods

For well over a year now, we’ve had a productive partnership with Bobby’s Foods; a relationship that has been producing excellent results. Back in September 2021, for example, the company won the ‘Product Launch of the Year’ award at the 2021 Retail Industry Awards, as we explained in a news post at the time.

The award related to our Classic Mini Ring Doughnuts, available in store and branded by Bobby’s Foods as “7 Mini Classics.”

Much more recently, on 10th February 2022, a team from Bobby’s came to visit us to look over our production processes and to see our BRC AA-rated quality assurance systems in action.

It was a very enjoyable event, and a great opportunity to share ideas and plan for the coming months. A second team will visit on 17th February.


Shortlisting for a New Innovation Award

On 8th February, we received an email from the organisers of the North West FSB ‘Celebrating Small Business Awards 2022,’  confirming that we had been shortlisted for the Business and Product Innovation Award category.

The North West final will take place on Friday 11th March at The Midland Hotel in Manchester.

A full list of finalists can be found on the FSB Awards website.


Simply Doughnuts Awarded AA Rating Again

In January 2022, we received official notice from Brand Reputation Compliance Global Standards (BRCGS) that Simply Doughnuts had again been awarded a top AA rating.

BRCGS – formerly known as the British Retail Consortium – delivered its rating following detailed site inspections.

Founded in the UK, the organisation operates internationally and notes that it operates “the most rigorous third party certification scheme of its type.” It writes that it promotes “best practice in manufacturing, helping to provide reassurance that products and services are high quality, legal and safe.”

Simply Doughnuts has worked with BRCGS / BRC for many years now and has consistently maintained the high standards demanded by customers throughout the UK and beyond.


Promoting More Ethical Business

In January 2022, keen to do more to promote corporate social responsibility, Simply Doughnuts announced its membership of Sedex.

Sedex is a global, not-for-profit membership organisation that is home to one of the world’s largest collaborative platforms for sharing data on supply chains. It is used by more than 38,000 members in over 150 countries to manage performance around labour rights, health & safety, the environment and business ethics.

For over twelve years Sedex has been developing technology, tools and partnerships that enable many of the world’s leading brands and suppliers to monitor and report on responsible practices.

The organisation notes that “Being a member of Sedex is a sign of Simply Doughnuts’ willingness to share information and to use this information to help manage and improve ethical standards within the supply chain.”

Announcing the company’s membership, managing director Shiraz Master said: “Like many businesses, we want to succeed in more than just commercial terms. We want Simply Doughnuts to be a force for good; to operate responsibly and to support the movement towards more transparency and more ethical behaviour in supply chains. Becoming a member of Sedex takes us another big step in that direction.”


Season’s Greetings

Here’s a short video message from everyone here at Simply Doughnuts.