The new food trend: Smaller snacks in lieu of full meals

Strawberry-Filled-Mini-Puff-Pastries

For those of us near or over 40, it’s still business as usual regarding your eating habits. We try to eat a healthy protein rich breakfast, lunch at noon and dinner from 5-7pm. But if you are any younger than that, there’s a good chance that this is very far from your daily eating routine. According to research, the line between meals and snacks is blurring for younger generations.

Snacks over meals

If you are a Millennial or Gen Z, there’s a great chance that you favor snacking many times a day over sitting down to a traditional meal, or 3 squares as it’s called. This is probably because the world has seemed to speed up. With things such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and all the other social media platforms, it seems that things are going too fast sometimes, especially in big cities, that it’s perceived that there is not enough time to eat. Fast food chains have picked up on these trends and are using them to their advantage. Snack wraps, dollar menu’s and quick to go items have grown in popularity over the past 5 years, especially with the younger crowd.

Bakeries follow the trend

Bakeries have also picked up on this trend as well. You may have noticed in your neighborhood, the rise of the cookie shop, biscuits and lime aid or just the fact that all coffee shops offer small items to snack on in their display cases. The newer generations feel that not only are bakery items premium and convenient, but they are also healthy as well.

These snacking trends go a bit further than that though. We are also seeing that not only are pastry items preferred to meals, but the preference is toward very small items, like mini cookies, mini muffins, scones and sausage dogs (a sausage or turkey link wrapped in a Danish pastry with syrup on top. These items are not only perceived as “premium”, but they are also filling and at most times affordable and seen as healthy.

These trends mean that not only is there a shift in eating habits, but that there is much opportunity for local bakeries and pastry shops to pick up on these trends and run with them. Bakeries must adapt to trends if they are wanting to grow and stay relevant in their current communities. So, whether it’s mini cookies, mini muffins or mini cupcakes, there’s plenty of room for innovation in a field that will see a lot of growth in the future thanks to the eating habits of Millennials, Gen Z and generations to come.

If you are a baker or have a pastry shop or cookie shop, Stratton Sales has Kookie King cookie makers, rack ovens, deck ovens and refrigeration for all your baking needs. Contact us anytime.

Smaller storefronts: The trend that’s changing the way you think about bakeries

Usually when a baker decides that he/she wants to open their own bakery, there are two question they need to ask themselves; is it going to be retail or is it going to be wholesale? So, let’s say you have chosen to go the route of retail. Now there is another question; do you go small or do you go big? In the past, bakers have not had to deal with the rising cost of outrageous rent and lack of space to make their bread or pastries, but all that is changing.

Millennials take hold

With millennials taking their foothold in every aspect of life, it’s no surprise that they have also made an impact to trends in the baking industry. From smaller, bite sized pastry’s to exotic flavored cupcakes, there is no part of this industry they have not influenced in some small way. One emerging trend is for is smaller, compact bakeries to meet the changing needs of customers.

The compact bakery is trending

Recent bakery trends show a large increase in the demand for specialty baked goods, healthy baked goods and breads for special diets. This trend is very prevalent in upscale communities but is quickly branching out to other places as millennials take their rightful place in the world. As you consider the evolving nature of your business, you may find that smaller footprint bakeries will help you meet the changing needs of the public and your customers. Being available when you’re needed is the next level of customer service and satisfaction.

Building a compact bakery

Building a compact bakery doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice quality or the depth of your product line. Here are a few ideas to consider.

Onsite production

Producing your products onsite highlights sights and smells of fresh, while also giving your customer an experience they can only achieve from visiting a bakery that produces goods in-house. Baking onsite equipment should be sized for the days production and the available space, thus it is very necessary to define your product line beforehand. Knowing what you want to make will allow you to maximize the efficiency of your machinery and square footage.

Everything in a compact bakery is on display, from making, mixing, finishing and baking. The whole process is on display and will add to the look and feel of your bakery. Revent’s new ONE series ovens are not only functional but they will showcase your beautifully baked products as well. Depending on the products you bake, you will be able to highlight the processes that make you unique.

Commissary Production

Producing in a commissary setting is a great way to maintain product consistency and quality as well as control costs. With advances in automated production machinery you no longer have to sacrifice quality for quantity. In fact, in many instances you will find increased quality by automating certain aspects of your process. Talking to a consultant or industry professional like Stratton Sales who understands machinery will help in choosing the right equipment for you.

Hybrid Production

Combining both commissary and onsite production will give you the best of both worlds. Onsite production and baking of selected items bring about the sights and smells of freshly made signature items. With supplementing products that are difficult to make or have lower margins from your commissary, you can round out your product offering and make your available space represent who you are as a baker.

As a baker, is a compact bakery right for me?

If you want to open a retail bakery that’s hip and trendy (and you really like the look and feel of a coffee shop) a compact bakery is definitely right for you. A compact bakery gives your customer a nice place to get a quick bite without all the hustle and bustle of a larger storefront. Let’s say maybe your customers want to bring a laptop and take advantage of your free wi-fi while they eat your hand crafted artisan breads and pastries in a quite setting, or maybe your customers want to get a quick coffee and a donut while they chat with friends in your nicely set up seating area, either way, a exactly bakery would be exactly what they were looking for.