Baking is many people’s activity of choice nowadays. It may be the cooler weather luring us indoors or the longing for the comfort of simpler times past. No matter the reason, baking has seen a recent surge in popularity.
With the holidays nearing, you can expect demand to soar as your customers prepare to make pumpkin pies for family dinners and shortbread cookies to deliver as gifts (or just to nibble on at home).
Grocery and food retail stores wisely plan annually for the uptick in demand for baking supplies by stocking their shelves, coolers, and freezers in time for the holiday baking rush. However, baking is driving people to grocery stores and food retailers this year more than ever. Plan your retail marketing around this trend and use the desire for sourdough starter to your advantage.
Here’s how you can ride the wave of the baking trend and move more products this holiday season.
Baking to Reconnect, Reassure & Teach
In times of uncertainty, people seek comfort in activities that are familiar, are predictable, and provide a sense of accomplishment. Unlike the little-bit-of-this, little-bit-of-that nature of cooking, baking is appealing to people because it requires exactness to execute the expected result. In other words, you follow the recipe and you know what you will get.
Since staying home is the new going out, family members are enjoying experimenting with new recipes together while reconnecting on an emotional level. After all, families who bake together, stay together.
In addition, many home-schooling parents use baking to teach their kids about math (units of measurement), science (changing substances from one form to another), and social skills (how to work with others).
Baking for Clean Living & Eating
People want to know what they are putting in their bodies. The “clean eating” trend has evolved to increased demand for baking. People are willing to indulge in some sweetness sometimes, but they want to know that they are not ingesting a mountain of chemicals as in processed food.
As a result, there is some cool experimenting going on with less-than-usual baking ingredients, such as frozen avocados (yes, really!). Avocados are finicky — they are often either overripe or not ripe enough – but they are always just right and ready when needed, and they’re a healthy fat alternative to butter and oils. See this frozen avocado-lime coconut pie recipe as proof. Add some red berries for a festive twist.
Sharing Baking on Social Media
People love cooking and baking reality television shows; they also love trying and sharing their own skills in the kitchen. Social media platforms are bursting with photos and videos of baking triumphs and disasters (just look up #homebaked on Instagram to see for yourself).
At 18.3%, sweet treats are the most shared of all food photos on social channels, according to a recent survey by digital marketing agency 360i. You can find everything from intricate chocolate souffles to dessert holiday hacks using chilled, prepared gingerbread cookie dough online.
Baking Ingredients in Refrigerated Cooling Units
Items like flour, sugar, and baking powder get most of the attention when it comes to baking ingredients. Yet, many important elements for making both sweet and savory treats are found not in the baking aisle but in refrigerated cooling and freezer units. For those who want to bake something delicious without starting from scratch, refrigerated cooling units contain some real gems.
Frozen pie shells, phyllo pastry, cream, eggs, and frozen fruit all play prominent roles in baking. Grocers and food retailers can help remind customers of the importance of these baking items in their retail marketing through display banners, QR codes leading to recipes, or by featuring these items in their weekly online flyers.
Is the Baking Trend a Flash in the Pan?
The practice of baking is as old as civilization, but during the age of convenience food, home baking had taken a bit of a hit. Now, with more people staying home to eat, baking provides entertainment, an opportunity for family bonding, and even a form of therapy for some.
According to an April 2020 survey by HUNTER, 51% of those who have increased their home baking recently say they intend to continue to do so in the future and make it part of their daily lives. Baking may be a trend, but it’s not one that is likely to go anywhere anytime soon. After all, who can resist the aroma of freshly baked treats coming out of the oven? Mmm!
Contact us to learn more about how to gracefully handle holiday product shifts, or leave us a comment below!