Concepts for success: January-February 2014

Diane Chiasson
January 31, 2014
Written by Diane Chiasson
What ingredients are expected to play an integral role in the baking industry this year?

Bakery trends for 2014 continue to move in a healthy direction, with a desire for more locally sourced products with clean flavours. Today’s consumers are concerned about the environment, the economic landscape of our society, and eating socially acceptable and responsible foods.

Consumers are also looking for quick, simple and convenient places to shop and eat at the same time. They will be turning more and more to bakeries as a place where they can buy and consume food at any time of the day. Expect to see bakeries offering much more than just baked goods this year, as they expand to become one-stop grocery stores or dine-in foodservice operations as well.

In terms of flavours, expect to see more influences from the Middle East and Asia, as well as honey being used in more baked goods. Colour will also have a big impact this year. Bakeries will no longer be just a sea of brown breads. There will be colourful loaves designed to co-ordinate with the seasons.

Here are eight bakery trends expected to show up in 2014.

THE HEALTH CONSCIOUS
As more consumers are foregoing white flour in their diets, bakeries are looking to offer a wider variety of baked goods made from ancient grains, as well as gluten-free items like polenta, soy, linseed, seeded rye, spelt and kamut. In addition, there is an increase in demand for products that are organic, dairy-free and vegan. Expect to see bakeries offering breads, pastries, cakes, cookies and other dessert items as gluten-free and vegan.

More than just bread
In order to compete with big brand grocery stores that offer in-house bakeries, small- to mid-sized bakeries will have to start offering more than just baked goods. Bakeries will now be doubling as dine-in and take-out restaurants, quick-stop foodservice operations and convenience stores. Your local bakery also will be the place to grab a coffee and pastry for breakfast or a sandwich, soup and salad for lunch, and a frozen entrée to heat up at home later that day for dinner. It may also be the place to pick up milk, jam and other staples while picking up the bread. 

BAKERY TO DINING DESTINATION
Bakeries will also soon take over the wine bar/gastro-pub fad. Many bakeries around the world are selling baked goods by the day, and transforming into trendy dining spots by night by offering its bakery products, as well as menus that include pâté, cheese, salads, antipasti, charcuterie, slow-roasted meats and delectable desserts.

Cleaner labels
In 2014, consumers want to know what they are eating and where it came from. Today’s consumers are more in the know than ever before. It will be very important for bakeries to use locally sourced, free-range, organic materials and to put this information on their labels. It’s all about educating patrons on what you are doing in 2014.

Tea-time
Tea is expected to be a major food trend for 2014, so bakeries can definitely jump on this by offering not only fancy, loose-leaf teas as a beverage, but also flavouring breads, cakes and pastries with tea. Tea is flavourful and also has a healthy connotation that is appealing to today’s consumers.

Middle Eastern flavours
Honey will be a dominant ingredient in 2014 for bakeries, an ingredient that is widely used in Middle Eastern cooking. Savoury items will also feature the flavours of the Middle East like zatar, sumac and marash. Also, expect to see more Middle Eastern flatbreads being sold at bakeries.

Nuts
In order to satisfy the gluten-free and dairy-free market, expect to see the use of almond milk and powder, as well as other nut products being used to replace wheat and dairy in breads, pastries and desserts.

Sweet and salty ethnic treats
Dessert trends for 2014 are leaning towards mixing sweet and salty flavours. Expect to see salted caramel everything – from ice cream to cheesecakes to croissants to pie, it will be the most popular flavour of the year. Ethnic desserts will also be prevalent this year, like the Peruvian picarone – a fried sweet potato and kabocha squash beignet, Korean rice cakes or fusion items like miso-glazed donuts.

Hopefully, these trends can provide some inspiration for new concoctions that will wow your patrons in the New Year.


Diane Chiasson, FCSI, president of Chiasson Consultants Inc., has been helping foodservice, hospitality and retail operators increase sales for more than 25 years. She provides innovative food and retail merchandising programs, interior design, marketing and promotional campaigns, and much more. Contact her at 416-926-1338, toll-free at 1-888-926-6655 or at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or visit www.chiassonconsultants.com .


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