According to Mintel, the bread industry is seeing low growth in mature markets as it faces growing competition from other breakfast and lunch foods and has a relatively poor health image amongst consumers. Innovation is therefore vital.
According to Mintel, the bread industry is seeing low growth in mature markets as it faces growing competition from other breakfast and lunch foods and has a relatively poor health image amongst consumers. Innovation is therefore vital to engage with existing and new potential users. In emerging markets there is high growth potential as consumers switch from unpackaged to packaged bread for convenience and look for western-style higher priced bakery products.The global sweet bakery market offers marginally better growth prospects than bread and bread products but also faces challenges, the research company believes. Most notably manufacturers will need to be increasingly mindful of the threats of the health lobby, even though the category still largely plays at the indulgent end of the food spectrum.In a blog post on the company’s web site, Chris Brockman, Food & Drink Research Manager at Mintel, takes a look at the key consumer trends shaping the bakery market and the latest in product innovation.SNACKINGWe are increasingly seeing the snackification of breakfast as consumers lead busier lives and their diets need to keep up, Brockman says. Indeed, one third of Italian consumers say there is not enough time to have bread or baked goods at home in the morning. New formats need to target on-the-go breakfast consumers, for example breakfast biscuits or drinks have had success here. Bakery brands are looking to gain a share of these new formats by making their products more portable and snackable.The examples Brockman quotes:Jacquet white bread to roll, launched in France in 2014 is specifically designed for making rolled sandwiches for easy, on-the-go consumption.Tip Top Grab’n Go Fruit & Fibre Breakfast Buns launched in Australia in 2014 and do not require any butter, spreads or toasting. They are described as quick and easy, handy snack sized buns that can be heated in the microwave. A snacking success story, the Focaccelle range is marketed as ‘the first savoury bread snack to consume wherever and whenever you want’, thanks to practical, individually wrapped portion packs. Launched in 2014, the product is now available in five varieties – the original extra virgin oil, black olive and cherry tomatoes variants, plus new rustic and rosemary varieties. The range has been one of the best-performing recent launches in the entire food and drink market in Italy. HYBRIDSExperimentation has become a key driver in the bakery market and a way to spark interest with younger consumers in particular, Brockman notes. One way in which brands are experimenting is through hybrids. Sweet bakery hybrids at retail started to appear in Japan in 2014, followed by Europe in 2015. Given that one quarter of UK cake buyers say they are interested in new formats of cake, such innovation could find appeal.Examples include:Launched in Japan, 2014, Yamazaki Dowhats!? Caramel & Almond Croissant Doughnut is a crispy pastry coated with caramel chocolate and almond. It features a unique texture as it combines a croissant and doughnut.Launched in the UK in 2015, Tesco’s raspberry duffins comprise doughnut muffins with raspberry filling, coated in sugar.Launched in Japan in 2015, Yamazaki Wonut Chocolate Waffle Doughnut is said to be crispy like a doughnut and moist like a waffle. ETHNIC OR SPECIALITYConsumers are also experimenting with flavours and types of bread, Brockman continues. Growth in the market is being driven by more versatile and interesting bread varieties, such as flatbreads and ethnic breads and this will continue in 2016. Indeed three-quarters of Italian, German, French and Spanish consumers say that trying different types of bread appeals to them.Examples include:Panificio Cremona Italia Linea Bio launched its Pane Arabo Bio (Organic Arabic Bread) in Italy in 2015.The Italian company Merano Speck, launched Südtiroler Schüttelbrot (South Tyrolean Crispy Rye Bread) in 2015. The bread is a mixed rye flatbread, seasoned with caraway and free from preservatives.In 2015, Marks and Spencers in the UK launched its Mediterranean Vegetable & Pesto Focaccia. It is made using a slowly fermented dough before topping with roasted vegetables, mozzarella cheese, parsley and green pesto, then baked in a stonebed oven for a distinctive crisp crust.