The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Fresh Loaf member lauded by Real Bread Campaign

Ruralidle's picture

Fresh Loaf member lauded by Real Bread Campaign

The March 2012 entry in this link refers to a Fresh Loaf member, Syd Aston owner of Aston's Organic Bakery, who is managing to sell real bread into some London schools.  This is despite the cost constraints in UK school meals.  Well done Syd!!

dabrownman's picture

see what Syd was up against - a quote from the aarticle:

'There were some complaints because Syd’s bread does taste different - it tastes like actual bread.'

I know how Syd must feel - Even my wife prefers Oroweat bread to any I bake :-) 

Way to go Syd!!!


gerhard's picture

Nice to see Syd successfully selling a product he believes in rather than try to please the lowest common denominator.  


P.S.  Dabrownman lots of people grew up eating food that did not require chewing, tasting and thinking about.  Just look at the success of the fast food industry, although nobody admits to eating there they have a huge following.  We enjoy buying real cheese sometimes you get someone over that has never had anything but processed cheese and they hate an aged cheddar or ripe brie.


dabrownman's picture

Many times it is a matter of money, where they are from or your personal experiences and preferences.  My two brothers and I grew up on Velveta or other processed cheese, Wonder Bread (my dad worked there for a few years) bologna, P&J sandwiches plus Mac and Cheese out of a box.  Parmesan came in a green can - but we rarely had it becausee of expense mostly - but it tasted weird too.  All of our friends grew up that way too.  We were poor but didn't know it and were never exposed to food that was specialty in nature and expensive, even more so today and never knew what we were missing - didn't even care and why ignorance is bliss.  Still like them all today too.

I'll never forget, when I finally got out to SF the first (by joining the Navy some 40 years ago), that I thought the bread there tasted funny, jut plain weird - I think it was Colombo.  But, still started my SD there in 1973.  A couple of years was all it took.  Granny's SD starter bread never tasted like that!  Never knew about great cheese until well after college either.  Didn't know I would be selling them and distributing them for 25 years.

My wife didn't grow up that way but still prefers commercial soft crust and dense soft crumb of commercial bread like Oroweat -and it isn't cheap - for her sandwiches, a personal preference.

Oddly, as a side note, when Kraft was trying to get his process cheese accepted, the natural cheese guys, as competitors, tried to get the government to label his new cheese 'Embalmed Cheese'. The government decided on 'processed cheese' instead thus saving Kraft from financial ruin no doubt :-)

lumos's picture

Oh, this is a wonderful news.  Thanks for posting, Richard.

He's already been supplying his bread to another London borough for their local school lunches. (Can't remember which one it was...but somewhere in north London....around Camden? Kentish Town? area....... I think....?)  It's really great his passion for good, honest food is spreading steadily. :) 


gmabaking's picture

Good for you Syd, maybe starting them out young will have a lasting impression.

 Years ago I carefully maintained a Sourdough Starter and made mostly mild mannered sandwich bread. Gave it up when my youngest at the time grandson commented that this bread is really good, not sour tasting like usual.....  Now that he is all grown up he has come to appreciate a bit broader range of breads,  but the epitome of mac and cheese still comes in a blue box and the best dinner is served by In and Out Burgers.

Ah well, his grandfather and I thoroughly enjoy our journey into breadhead land, from ITJB to Silverton-- with many detours along the way. My sisters and I all tend to starters now and love it. Yesterday was Irish Raisin Bread from King Arthur blog, today that wonderful Struan and tomorrow yet another Country White or maybe the Rosemary Olive Oil.

carblicious's picture

Very nice!   It's great to hear that schools are moving back to non-industrialized food, and your part of it.

G-man's picture

Congratulations, Syd, that's some solid work!!

If only we could reverse the trend further and further away from real foods in our schools here. Alas, we're more likely to get our lawmakers to say pizza is a vegetable than that children need good, real food to feed growing minds and bodies. 

On the other hand people can keep getting fatter and fatter and still pretend to not know why, after all they eat half a pepperoni and extra cheese vegetable for every meal.

EvaB's picture

and yes the food we eat can be connected to economics, but we never ate that blue box cheese stuff, my mother only made real cheese and maccaroni (made with cooked mac, real sharp cheddar and cream and baked in the oven) which I detested and wouldn't eat, also won't eat the blue box junk either so its not the costs! We were very poor, but mom drew the line at cheap foods she didn't consider it cheap to buy pre made food, when she could buy a huge bag or box of mac and add some cheese and milk or cream (a lot of the time it was less expensive cheese and canned milk) for about the same price as the pre made boxed stuff, where we lived it was all about the cost of transport and it cost more to transport all those little boxes over the larger boxes of mac, or spagetti. We ate home made bread, even though the local bakery (and it used locally milled flour until the mill burned) produced nice bread for about 25 cents a loaf the last stuff she ever bought from then, (they had a mouse controll problem that eventually put them out of business) she said she could make it cheaper and it tasted better, and it did!

These days its not just the economics, its the fact that people have to work two jobs to keep a roof over their kids heads and them clothed and in school, they simply don't have time to shop around, try stuff out, or bake. I was a stay at home mom, and today we couldn't afford to live on what we did all the time we had the kid at home. Everything costs so much more, electricity is up, natural gas is up, food costs are all up, and stores are further an farther between in most places. We had 4 large grocery stores in a small city of around 6000 people, and there were at least 5 to 8 corner stores (no gas pumps, just little groceries that were open early or late and on Sundays) in the same town, today you are lucky to have two large groceries (with twice the expensive foods and less the reasonable priced foods) and maybe three convienece stores almost all of which have fast foods or gas pumps and mostly pop, and quickie junk (you have to hunt to find anything resembling actual food. And the breads are all cheap white, and mostly are past the sell by date! Its simply easier to take the kids home KFC or McD's than it is to go shopping after work and then make food, most of which the kids look at like its poisioned because its not from the junk food place. And I live in a city with at least 6 times the population of the one when I was a kid.