Bakers Journal

The Buying Power of Mom

November 5, 2007
By Jane Ayer

My husband and I are renovating our kitchen.

My husband and I are renovating our kitchen. For three weeks we’ve been washing our dishes in the bathroom, making toast in the toaster that’s now set up in our living room, trying to use as few pots and utensils as possible when getting meals ready. Those meals, as a consequence, are more likely to come from the grocery store or the restaurant around the corner from us, than from our own pantry (which currently consists of plastics bins scattered throughout the dining room). So while I’ve always paid attention to what is on the shelves of our grocery store, with most of my meals currently coming from a box or a tray or a carton, I’m paying a lot more attention. I’m reading labels. I’m asking questions. And I’m looking for healthy. While I’ve always cared about what I put in my body, the level of that concern has been inconsistent, surging at times, ebbing at others. But things are different now. Why? Because I’m a mom now – I have a one-year-old son who has split the seams of my heart wide open. And the level of my concern for what goes into his mouth never wanes. That’s motherhood. And it’s the way, to varying degrees, of most mothers. We read labels. We care about sodium content and hydrogenated fats and vitamins and protein levels. We want our children to get lots of what’s good for them. We want food that makes our children feel good. We want food that makes our children healthy. We want to teach our children about healthy food choices, so they’ll know what to choose when they’re old enough to make the choice for themselves. And with moms in charge of 80 per cent of household spending, what we want matters.

Which is why products like the flaxseed ingredient with the double whammy of omega-3 that we feature on the website this month are bound to be a hit. As is the trans fat-free shortening Donna Shaw profiles for us, also on the website. These are all homegrown products that are tailor-made for the baking industry. As are the products made by Best Cooking Pulses – they’ve already caught on around the world, now, as you’ll see on page 12, the company is looking to bring its products to its own back yard.

What sort of healthy baked goods have been a hit for your bakery? What kind of good-for-you and good-for-your-tastebuds products are customers snatching from the shelves faster than you can place them there? What sort of innovative ingredients are the moms shopping at your bakery raving about? Drop us an e-mail and let us know, we’d love to hear about them and possibly feature them in a future issue of Bakers Journal.

“Moms across generations as well as ethnic and socioeconomic lines are all motivated by love and the desire to keep her family secure and thriving on all levels,” says consumer analyst Mary Meehan.  And that’s something that, renovated kitchen or not, one child or 10, Asian or African-Canadian, all moms have in common. And it’s something that will never change.


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