IDDBA's Show & Sell center featured creative bakery merchandising ideas.
Showcases displayed products in various themes and eye levels.
Sliced baguettes garnished with cream cheese and a tomato mixture transform a savory bakery treat.
Labor saving ingredients and products with a healthful label were among the prevailing bakery trends at the International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association's seminar and expo held last month in Minneapolis. Dairy-Deli-Bake 2005 drew record attendance this year, according to IDDBA, with more than 8,200 registered attendees and 593 exhibiting companies.
New products and general exhibit hall chatter revealed in-store bakery insights. This year, "low-carb" was a mere whisper and "trans-fat" and "whole grain" drove the buzz. Bakery trends from Dairy-Deli-Bake included:
Continuing to develop labor-saving options for instore bakeries, manufacturers introduced a broad array of frozen-dough products that can be baked without thawing or proofing. Exhibiting companies showcased freezer-to-oven breads primarily, but croissants, muffins and other pastries also are available.
Consumer knowledge about trans-fatty acids may not have reached its full potential, but manufacturers are in full product-development mode, banking on greater consumer interest as the trans-fat labeling regulations take effect next year. IDDBA exhibitors reduced or eliminated trans-fats in finished baked products, mixes and bases and raw ingredients, including oils.
Whole grain versions
Promoting the benefits of whole grain products is a natural fit in the bakery department. Anything that can be made whole grain seems to be moving in that direction. Beyond whole grain breads, manufacturers expanded horizons with whole grain muffins, bagels, cookies and scones.
Omega-3s in the bakery
A trend that has grown more quickly among commercial bakeries, bakery products fortified with Omega-3 oils are finding a niche in in-store bakeries as well. Omega-3 breads and flax seed products are more readily available for in-store bakeries to tap into this consumer health trend.
Healthfulness may be gaining some traction in the bakery, but cakes still rule. IDDBA exhibitors offered an array of new products to continue in-store profitability in the cake category. Exhibitors debuted the latest movie characters, television stars and pop culture designs for decorating cakes.
More frozen-finished gourmet cakes and tortes allow in-store operators to expand product lines without significantly increasing labor. Packaging manufacturers too are customizing clamshells and other boxes and containers for the expanse of cake varieties and various portion sizes.
In-store bakeries are prime destinations for families seeking treats for children's school parties. IDDBA exhibitors offered cupcake platters, cake and cupcake combos and even cake-filled ice cream cones to appeal to busy families and school regulators restricting home-baked products in classrooms.
IDDBA's Show & Sell Center demonstrated merchandising techniques and product ideas. This year's theme, Eat Easy, presented displays with dècor and products from the "speak easy" prohibition era. The instore bakery section, for example, featured Capone's Confections, Baby Face's Bistro and Spat's Speakeasy Sandwiches. The eye-catching displays maximized showcase space through varied display heights and creative product labels to bring added customer attention紡nd sales釦o the department.
Bakery's role in consumer snacking trends
Snacks are more commonly eaten than breakfast or lunch, according to Brian Darr, managing director, Datassential Research. Darr revealed consumer snacking trends last month from a study commissioned by IDDBA.
"Nine out of ten Americans snack at least once a day," Darr said. "That's about 250 million consumers." According to the study, consumers define a "snack" as any small portion, low prep food or anything that is not breakfast, lunch or dinner.
To capture prime snacking sales opportunities, bakery operators should note when and why most snacks are purchased.
In the baked goods category, savory products win over sweet ones more often for snacking.
Consumers select specific snacking items based on their moods and situations. Objectives include fresh/ healthy, indulgent, fun/cool, and cheap/affordable. Darr recommends that food manufacturers and retailers design, position and promote products to capitalize on consumers' different snacking objectives.