Editor’s Letter: November 2014
By Janine Druery
By Janine Druery
These days, there seems to be an app for just about everything. You can
manage your finances, find a restaurant, and maintain a proper brushing
and flossing schedule.
These days, there seems to be an app for just about everything. You can manage your finances, find a restaurant, and maintain a proper brushing and flossing schedule. You can even count sheep, translate your cat’s meows or get reminders to call your significant other.
Yet, for every good app out there, there are easily 50 that are of no real value, and before downloading any I generally ask myself: “Do you really need this? Will you actually ever use this?” And the all-important: “Is this worth $5.99?”
So what about baking apps? Recipe-based applications of all varieties exist. And these may be of great use to some. For instance, these apps may help out students learning the trade or some of the beginner/younger chefs out. And these groups are already part of the wired in, app demographic. This generation is “one with technology” in a way most others are not. They are likely already on it – and it just makes sense.
But do seasoned chefs need a smartphone doodad or tablet gizmo to help them create artisanal breads and pastries? Not likely (although it never hurts to check out the latest technology).
Yet, just because you don’t need to sit in front of your smartphone to watch a demo on how to properly crack an egg or get the lumps out of your batter, that doesn’t mean there isn’t an app out there for you.
Those steeped in the industry are likely to be much more interested in business-based applications. These are the type of apps that will help you do things like track your inventory of ingredients, convert your recipes to various yields or calculate your food costs.
In our cover story “Appetizing Apps,” Colleen Cross takes a look at some of the more useful apps out there for bakers.
For example, one of the ones she cites will help you visualize custom cakes, alongside your customers; another interesting app will help you grow your recipe database; there is even one that can help catering and hospitality professionals calculate accurate selling prices and gross profits.
Just like a good mixer or a good spatula, a good app is merely a tool. And these tools are helping a variety of industry people work smarter at their jobs (and are saving them time in the process). And who couldn’t use more of that?
We all know that these types of apps aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. By this time next year, I expect dozens more to have flooded this market.
Whether you use them is up to you, but there are definitely some out there that are worth a look – creative, attractive and interesting tools that might really lend a virtual hand in various aspects of your work.
And let’s face it, if downloading a baking, business or foodservice app is just not for you, perhaps you’ve got some mad skills of your own that you could make into an app of your own! I mean, who knows the world of Canadian baking better than you?
Have a great baking app idea, a good suggestion for a feature article or just want to discuss the industry? Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s start the conversation.