From highs to lows… the rollercoaster that is Rex continues…
The highs: this week we attended the Winners’ Dinner at the 2014 tiptree World Bread Awards in London 🙂
From over 400 entries we were named a Runner Up 2014 (losing out in the ciabatta category to the overall best bread winner) and won no fewer than SEVEN medals for our breads & buns! We are so proud & humbled that this made us the most awarded community bakery in Britain!
The Rex Baker couldn’t have been happier – in the view of the 40+ top judges we are making some of the nation’s best bread. That’s quite an accolade after just 6 months’ trading and somewhat makes up for those many long hard nights….
Naturally the Rex Baker was surprised and personally overwhelmed by this. We think it endorses our Rex values. We commit that we:
- use ONLY organic flour in our breads
- hand-make ourselves early each morning in our on-site working bakery
- craft SLOWLY to fully & properly ferment our breads for the best health
- use only the highest quality possible ingredients such as Callebaut Belgian chocolate, pure unsalted patisserie butter, Kalamata olives…
- add absolutely no scary, unnatural “improvers” or preservatives
But in the rollercoaster of Rex Bakery, here we go again. Having faced some really difficult problems since we bought the shop, we are now facing the biggest challenge of the lot.
The lows: We just learnt that Wenzel’s the Bakers are opening up in Little Chalfont next to the butcher’s! Wenzel’s are a Middlesex version of Gregg’s, have a factory in Watford supplying a chain of something like 30-40 shops and are aggressively expanding their brown and orange concept of value bread, soft-filled pies and subs. Expect 4 rolls or a small white loaf for £1, meal deals and so on, all with “real bread” claims.
Yes they are mass production cheaper food advocates.. and we are the opposite with our focus on high quality & food provenance. But we are sure they will take some custom from us and more concerning for our little community, bring very few new customers to Little Chalfont.
We fear some local businesses may well go from slight profit to unsustainable loss on the back of this and in simple terms, as residents we could well see more businesses failing and that means more charity shops and empty units. This is sadly what you can see in Chesham and other nearby high streets.
The question for you the consumer & local resident, is what do you want your habitat to be? Now is the time to decide. Is it a few High Street chain shops with a factory approach to food surrounded by empty units and charity shops? Or small independents, who put our hearts & souls into providing high quality, award winning food for you?
Our plea to you is simple. Please support us, we are local like you!
We will see, the experiment is about to begin…