Heavy rain during the summer means there is probably not enough UK wheat to produce bread to our exacting quality standards in the coming year.It is now generally agreed that 2007 has been a poor harvest for both quality and quantity in a number of regions of the UK. This is a problem because in the past few years we have been using up to 80% of the UK wheat harvest for breadmaking. This situation inevitably has made us more vulnerable to year-on-year variations in the UK supply. It’s not a surprise, then, that we sometimes have to top this up with imports.Despite the unusual summer weather and the wider problems of wheat supply and demand for food and non-food uses, our millers are able to provide flour of consistent quality for breadmaking by buying wheat from other countries.The situation is not always so good in other parts of the world. Many countries in the Middle East and Africa have to rely almost completely on imported grain, arriving through a long supply chain. This can lead to inconsistent performance in the bakery. As a result, adjustments have to be made to the recipe or breadmaking processes. The result is extra time and cost in the bakery and products that vary on a regular basis.It is a tribute to our millers that they are able to supply breadmaking flour of consistent quality, whatever the UK climate throws at us. It also reflects well on our bakers as they know the flour quality needed to make their products.
Late last year, guitar greats John McLaughlin and Jimmy Herring announced plans to perform together for a “Meeting Of The Spirits” tour. Scheduled for November and December 2017, the tour dates have now officially been confirmed by the two legends.McLaughlin has said that this will be his farewell tour through the U.S., and that he will be performing music from his work with the Mahavishnu Orchestra. Herring will also be performing, with his new band The Invisible Whip. That band also has a spring tour schedule planned, and you can read all about them here. The two musicians will perform sets on their own, then come together for a collaborative and improvisational encore performance.The new tour dates span from November 1st through December 9th, starting in Buffalo and ending in Los Angeles. You can see the full tour schedule below!John McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring “Meeting Of The Spirits” Tour11/1/17 Buffalo, NY, University at Buffalo Center for the Arts11/2/17 Albany, NY, The Egg11/3/17 New York, NY, Town Hall11/4/17 Port Chester, NY, Capitol Theatre11/5/17 Cranston, RI, Park Theatre/Rhode Island Center for the Performing Arts11/8/17 Boston, MA, The Wilbur Theatre11/9/17 Philadelphia, PA, Keswick Theatre11/10/17 Newark, NJ, Prudential Hall,New Jersey Performance Art Centre11/11/17 Washington DC, Lincoln Theatre11/12/17 Durham, NC, Duke Performances at DPAC11/15/17 Ann Arbor, MI11/17/17 Chicago, IL, Vic Theatre11/19/17 Indianapolis, IN, Clowes Memorial-Hall-Butler University11/21/17 Nashville, TN, Schermerhorn Symphony Center-Laura Turner Concert Hall11/22/17 Atlanta, GA, Atlanta Symphony Hall11/24/17 Jacksonville, FL, Florida Theatre11/25/17 Clearwater, FL, Ruth Eckerd Hall11/27/17 New Orleans, LA, The Joy Theater11/30/17 Austin, TX, Paramount Theatre12/5/17 Seattle, WA, Moore Theatre12/6/17 Portland, OR, Revolution Hall12/8/17 San Francisco, CA, The Warfield12/9/17 Los Angeles, CA, Royce Hall-UCLA[Photo credit Ina McLaughlin]