Dear Editor,A Food Standards Agency study, published last week, stated that there was little to no nutritional difference between organic and non-organic produce. Leaving aside the arguments for and against the study, we would like to focus on two overlooked aspects. For us at least, the major benefits of organic are not in comparing what is in organic food (nutritional values), but rather what is not in organic food – pesticide residues, chemicals, e-numbers, artificial colourings etc. The evidence here is pretty much pro-organic.Secondly, as a dedicated organic wholesale bakery, in business for 10 years, we have to adhere to a strict list of what natural, organic ingredients we are permitted to use. Our recipes are uncomplicated; they are the same that have been used for hundreds of years – flour, egg, milk, butter, raising agent – mix, into the oven, done. But we were unable to achieve the same results by automating our process as we do in hand-baking; the machines could not handle the consistency of our organic batters.Customers choose organic products for different reasons, such as taste, quality standards or perceived benefits. We stand by their right to do so.Lise Madsen, MD and founder,Honeyrose Bakery
Philip Willcock has been appointed chief executive of the £25bn (€29bn) in-house manager of the industry-wide scheme for UK railway companies. Willcock will succeed Chris Hitchen, whose departure from RPMI Railpen was announced in May. Hitchen has worked at RPMI for almost 20 years, 13 of those as CEO.Willcock will join RPMI in February from Aviva, where he led businesses in the UK and overseas. He was most recently CEO of Aviva’s joint venture company in Indonesia and CEO of Aviva Italy. Other previous senior roles include chief operating officer and sales and marketing director at Aviva’s UK & Ireland Life Company. With Willcock appointed, RPMI has completed a restructuring of its executive leadership team, the scheme said in a statement. It already announced the appointments of David Maddison as managing director of the pension scheme business and Paul Sturgess as managing director of RPMI’s pension business unit. They join the investor in January. Julian Cripps is managing director responsible for RPMI’s investment arm, having been appointed to that role earlier this year .The selection process leading to Willcock’s appointment was led by John Chilman, Babloo Ramamurthy and Paul Trickett, who chair the three companies within the RPMI Group.Hitchen is the new non-executive chair of the £43bn Border to Coast Pensions Partnership, one of the UK’s eight formed or emerging public pension asset pools.