The bakery business is all about the people, after all. Rick Oleshak, vice president of marketing for AB Mauri, reminded attendees at a Sept. 20 educational session during the International Baking Industry Exposition in Las Vegas that companies that don’t run themselves – ‘’people do.”
“B2B does not mean business to boring,” Oleshak during the IBIE session, Marketing to a B2B Baking Industry with a B2C Lens. “Why does a B2C mindset matter? The oven has been hot. Products are in short supply. There are gas shortages. It’s a crazy time.”
A B2C mindset is all about awareness, he noted, and the facts are that your messaging is 20 times more likely to be remembered through storytelling. He outlined five secrets to success: speak truthfully, infuse personalities into stories, create likeable characters, have a start, middle and ending, and do give it away.
“We don’t want to be presented to,” he said. “We want to be inspired.”
A variety of IBIE sessions tackled the important business topics of planning for growth and secrets to boosting your bakery’s profitability.
During the IBIE session, “Planning for Growth,” presented by the Bread Bakers Guild of America, Tarit Tanjasiri of Crema Artisan Bakers in Irvine, Calif., shared how his 17-year-old retail bakery transformed its business model to stay afloat. Tanjasiri offered tips on expanding your wholesale bread business, along with Dean Kim of OC Baking Co., Orange, Calf.
“We need more space,” he told a packed audience of retail bakers. “That is our No. 1 issue.”
For the past four years, their bakery adjacent to their bakery café in Southern California was bottlenecking around every corner: limited cold storage space, high labor costs driven by repetitive problems, and a high break-even point.
“Growth is a matter of survival,” Tanjasiri exclaimed.
So, their bakery began construction on expanding from a 3,800-square-foot warehouse to a 7,800-square-foot facility in four years. It was a complete rebuild. They were pivoting to survive, he said.
“If people are coming to me to buy products, it is my responsibility to take care of them,” Tanjasiri said, summing up his business philosophy.
Fellow panelist Kim added a cautionary tale. If a customer is going to order thousands of pieces a day, or per week, then your answer should be yes.
“But the more SKUs you have,” he cautioned, “it will destroy you.”
Waste – or eliminating it – was the topic of conversation for Josh Allen of Companion, St. Louis, who shared insights on his wholesale operation reduced waste through its ongoing “trash initiative” that is helping them reduce, reuse and recycle, during a IBIE session “Transforming Our Bakery by Watching Our Waste.”
“It is so disheartening to nurture a loaf of bread and then at the end of the day throw it in the trash,” he said. “We were generating 1.6 million pounds of trash a year.”
Then the bakery initiative the Trash Initiative and found a composting partner, helping them achieve a triple level of trash efficiency.
“It has been a huge, huge benefit for us,” Allen said.
Business of Baking for Beginners
More than 100 retail bakery owners and managers profited from learning how to build a successful business model while attending the Business of Baking for Beginners event, conducted on the first day of the IBIE on Sept. 17.
“Your job is to be a leader, not a doer,” said Randy McArthur, national technical sales at Dawn Foods and a founding partner of the RPIA Group, which formed in 2001 to help bakers gather and create a sense of community. ‘If you are not teaching, you are not growing. A great plan needs a great team.”
Further, McArthur pointed out the RPIA is joining forces with the Retail Bakers of America, which is managed by Bernadette Shanahan-Haas, the RBA’s director of operations. “RPIA is handing off to RBA,” McArthur said. “We are very excited about our future.”
Rick Crawford, managing partner of the RPIA Group, outlined a host of innovative services from RPIA, including a new program that involves group purchasing resources.
“This is a way to get discounts on products without changing vendors,” Crawford outlined. “The average cost savings can be 16% to 24%.”
Another new project is the RPIA dipping program that is geared for retail bakeries expanding into ice cream. The project incorporates discounts for a variety of ice cream parlor products and flavors, including slush bases and syrups, sundae toppings, and milk shake and beverage syrups.
Looking forward, McArthur recommended other important assets for retail bakers including QuickBooks online, nutraCoster software by SweetWARE, and Cybake, a bakery management software system used by retail and wholesale bakers to control their operations, improve efficiency, and increase sales.
The successful business model for retailers is changing rapidly and increasingly involves online business.
“Technology is a definite driver in the way people today access food,” McArthur said. “There are so many ways now that people want to take delivery of the bakery products you make. It all starts with a plan.”
Demonstrations and interactive theater were popular at the show.
WP Bakery Group USA presented a unique immersive experience with its professional video demonstration inside the Big Black Box at its booth, featuring messaging from multiple bakers and executives who share ideas on how to implement automation with an open structure -- and to “go up in quality.”
In a fashion similar to the Van Gogh Immersive Experience seen throughout the world, WP Bakery Group USA’s revolutionary new booth provided an immersive experience in a “Big Black Box.”
Patricia Kennedy, President, and CEO of WP Bakery Group USA, said, “We have to start thinking differently with how we do everything. With this immersive experience – something the industry has never seen before – we are able to present a much broader view of our equipment line than with machines on the booth floor.”
Expert demonstrations also inspired bakers to achieve excellence. Stephane Meillier, test baker for Lesaffre, pastry chef and master baker with more than 16 years’ experience in the industry, was among the highly skilled presenters during a variety of product demonstrations, including his session on producing sourdough brioche
Although known as a yeast supplier, Lesaffre is much more than yeast. The innovative company provides a wide range of baking solutions, such as dough conditioners and enzymes to malts and fortification products. Every day, the expert technical team for Lesaffre solves bakery formulation challenges at Lesaffre Baking Centers around the country.
Sophie Blum, chief marketing and channel officer at Puratos, speaking about consumer trends influencing the bread market
The future is “phygital,” exclaimed Sophie Blum, chief marketing and channel officer for Puratos during a Sunday session at the Artisan Marketplace, Crafted by Puratos.
In the United States, 26% of consumers would like stores to be more automated, and 30% believe AI (artificial intelligence) will help people make better food choices in the future, according to Puratos research.
“Consumers expect food to go beyond nutrition. Mental and physical connections are increasingly important,” Ms. Blum said.
Puratos conducts ongoing consumer research globally to shed light on influential food and bakery trends. Latest research involved human cultural intelligence, trend frameworks, and artificial intelligence.
Trends can have various shapes, she explained, and sourdough started as a trend in 2014. “Today, the sourdough wave is growing very steep,” Blum said.
As for 2022 trends, “Continued Classics” is a key trend for bakery to feed innovation. According to Puratos research, 60% of consumers want to try something new and yet 67% would like to have some familiar ingredients.
“Taste and freshness remain the undisputable driver of choice,” she said.
Cargill showcased its commitment to the bakery industry with new solutions that offer improved functionality and address prevailing consumer trends around personal and planetary health.
Among the company’s offerings, health took center stage as Cargill debuted its new soluble corn fiber. The ingredient supports sugar reductions of 30% or more, while also giving products a fiber boost. Alongside its nutritional credentials, the soluble fiber brings other benefits. It labels simply as soluble corn fiber and offers good digestive tolerance, a must for indulgent categories like bakery. It’s functional too, bringing back bulk and mouthfeel to reduced-sugar applications.
Cargill also revealed significant gains on the sustainability front, adding RSPO-certified segregated palm olein and palm stearin to its North American portfolio. With this announcement, the company becomes one of the first palm oil suppliers to offer a full line of RSPO-certified segregated products. RSPO-segregated products offer customers greater assurance and transparency as there’s no co-mingling – they’re kept separate from commodity palm oil supplies, traceable throughout the supply chain and produced according to the criteria established by the RSPO.
Related to the company’s palm oil sustainability efforts, Cargill’s PalmWise® traceability and sustainability monitoring data platform was recognized as a finalist in the 2022 BEST in Baking Program’s Sustainability award category. Updated quarterly, PalmWise provides customers a window into their specific supply chain, giving them easy access to the sustainability data relevant to their palm oil purchases, including traceability details and sustainability performance.
Extending shelf life
Global ingredient supplier Corbion showcased state-of-the-art solutions for extending product shelf life, increasing operational efficiency, reducing waste and protecting against price and supply variability at the IBIE. Visitors to the Corbion Booth sampled solutions as well as learned about Corbion’s new customer support offering, 360° by Corbion.
“As an innovative ally to the baking industry for more than a century, Corbion consistently brings
together cutting-edge food science, advanced technology and manufacturing know-how to
deliver products that resonate in an ever-changing marketplace,” says Jennifer Lindsey, vice president, global marketing, SFS. “Now, with the launch of 360° by Corbion, our customers can take their product development process to the next level of innovation, efficiency, speed and profitability.”
In addition to unveiling the new service offering, technical, marketing and sales experts from Corbion were on hand to discuss solutions for dough strengthening, protecting and preserving freshness and optimizing bowl costs. Featured products at the booth included:
- Ultra Fresh® – This tiered portfolio offers a variety of solutions for increased moistness, resilience and softness. Ultra Fresh is a finalist for the 2022 IBIE Best in Baking Award for Sustainability.
- Pristine® 3000 – The most robust dough conditioning innovation from Corbion to date, Pristine 3000 enables bakers to overcome common quality hurdles such as wheat protein inconsistencies without relying on gluten supplementation and traditional solutions like DATEM.
- Vantage 2060 – Available regionally, enzyme-based Vantage 2060 makes it possible to reduce oils and hard fats by up to 60% and can be used alongside other dough improvers and ESL solutions for easy formulation.
Trends and innovations
Cybake bakery software announces the introduction of its unique solution for retail in-store bakeries, Cybake ISB, to the market in the United States. Cybake ISB is a retail production planning and management system used by supermarkets, convenience stores and others to ensure freshness, improve availability, increase sales, and cut waste for their in-store bakeries and fresh food counters.
Multilingual, cloud-based Cybake ISB tells in-store bakery colleagues the best combination of products to bake or make at the right times via PDAs, tablets, or cell phones by using forecasts and live sales data.
Freshness and availability are key market differentiators. Retailers that get their production waves right sell fresher, better quality products at the times their customers want them. The systems used by retailers often lack the ability to make this happen.
This is where Cybake ISB fills the gap. Food production sections that use Cybake ISB’s multi-wave production plans generally increase like-for-like sales by around 3-4% and cut in-store food production waste by at least 10%.
Jane Tyler, founder of Cybake, says: “It’s exciting to bring Cybake ISB to America and to be announcing it here at IBIE. This is our debut as exhibitors at the show. The feedback we’ve had so far has been amazing; so there couldn’t be a better time or place.
IFF showcased its breadth of trend-driven innovations for the bakery industry at IBIE. IFF’s first-time presence at the triennial professional bakery tradeshow centers around the theme of “Bakery Beyond Tradition”, signaling a new chapter in the bakery category for IFF after its 2021 merger with DuPont’s Nutrition & Biosciences business. Today’s IFF combines functional ingredient and flavor expertise, highly respected bakery solutions and unique product design capabilities for grain-based applications.
“We’re supporting the baking industry in new ways, by building on the wisdom of the past to inspire relevant products for the future,” said Catherine Hogan, category marketing lead for bakery and bars, cereal & confectionery, IFF. “With our expanded ingredient portfolio and proprietary product design, we’ve embedded science and creativity into our entire process from conceptualization to commercialization. By leveraging our deep industry knowledge and broad capabilities, we create outstanding partnerships with manufacturers, delivering solutions that can increase nutritive values, create new sensorial experiences, improve product quality and simplify manufacturing processes—all while considering environmental impact.”
IFF introduced end-to-end product design, featuring an extensive portfolio which includes flavors and colors, functional ingredients, emulsifiers, hydrocolloids, enzymes and natural fruit and vegetable inclusions for baked goods.
Some of the featured ingredients included:
ENOVERATM 3001: recognized by IBIE's BEST in Baking as a qualifier in the Sustainability category. ENOVERATM 3001 is the first enzyme-only solution on the market to consistently replicate the robustness and functionality of conventional dough strengtheners in a formula without DATEM, SSL, monoglycerides or crutch additions for a consumer-friendly label.
RE-MASTER VANILLA™: modern technology building upon the artistry of previous vanilla iterations, creating a new generation of exceptional taste experiences designed to withstand harsh baking processes for maximum impact and taste profiles. Vanilla flavors are customized according to product development needs, such as to modulate the perception of sweetness, increase intensity, and mask off-notes from alternative proteins and whole grains.
Taura by IFF: real fruit and vegetable inclusions for healthy bakery products. Taura provides customized fruit pieces, flakes and pastes that retain a fruit’s taste, color and nutritional characteristics by using unique technology.