One of two lappers fold the dough filled with butter or margarine to eventually create a 64-layer sheet.
Good as gold


Additionally, the Wisconsin bakery will allow the Chicago plant to roll out new products, especially on its new laminated sweet goods line that now offers operational versatility and speed to market.

“Our new bakery is opening up a whole new world of opportunity,” George Caparos said. Those potential possibilities, he added, include everything from hand-held, portion-controlled and snackable pastry bites to filled strip Danish that’s almost as complex as a traditional European strudel.

Super-premium cinnamon rolls top the list, said Doug Dinnin, managing director, in-store bakery sales. Making their debut this fall, the fully baked rolls come with a flaky croissant dough that provides buttery flavor to complement the gourmet cinnamon and a hefty shmear of cream cheese icing.

“The dough has to be good enough to carry the combination of cinnamon and icing as well as to provide enough moisture to the product so that it’s still soft and fresh after a couple of days,” Mr. Dinnin said. “It’s great right out of the package, but it’s incredible when you microwave it for a few seconds.”

A veteran of the in-store bakery market, Mr. Dinnin joined Gold Standard Baking about a year ago to catapult the company’s presence in that channel.

“Our goal is to fill the gaps in the in-store bakeries,” he said. “A lot of retailers are baking off products but not carrying thaw-and-sell. When the bake-off items sell out, they end up with empty space on their shelves. It’s an educational process for them to understand what they’re missing.”

Custom-designing items for in-store bakeries often requires a delicate balance.

“You not only have to listen to someone and give them what they need, but you also must figure out what your customers are ‘looking’ for versus what they are ‘asking’ for,” he said. “Those can be two totally different things. Today, they may want one item, but every time you make another call, they want something else. It’s a constant evolution.”

Moreover, to compete with nearby quick-service restaurants and premium sandwich shops, c-stores seek fresh-made innovation blended with labor-saving simplification.

“With c-stores, it’s not about putting our products on the shelf,” George Caparos said. “We’re focusing on the food service part of the convenience store by either selling through distributors to the individual store where they’re making a sandwich on-premise or whether they are selling sandwiches made daily at a central commissary. In some areas of the country, c-stores are taking business from grocery stores as well. People are starting to shop at them because everything is coming in fresh, and there’s no line.”