In the highly competitive packaged flatbread category, most consumers recognize the Stonefire brand from FGF Brands, one of the largest producers of naan and other flatbreads in North America.
During the past decade, the Toronto-based company has successfully developed a strong presence in the supermarket in-store bakery-deli arena where only a handful of branded baked foods had served the market on a national scale.
At the International-Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association’s annual convention and trade show, Breadeli became the latest entry into the packaged flatbread market that’s estimated at about $130 million in annual sales, said Ed Metzger, senior director of business development for the company. Breadeli, a part of U.K.-based Bakkavor that’s a publicly traded food company on the London Exchange, featured a Tuscan-inspired schiacciata flatbread sold under the Breadeli Rustic Flat brand. Instead of shipping the products from its parent company based in the U.K., Breadeli started up its 50,000-square-foot bakery in Charlotte, N.C., in September.
The in-store bakery also saw a number of other international baking companies expand their presence in the U.S. market, including St. Pierre Bakery of Manchester, U.K., with its line of packaged brioche and other baked foods made by copackers in France as well as waffles and other snack items shipped over from Europe.
I.D.D.B.A. also featured more than a dozen international exhibitors from family-owned bakeries from Northern Ireland to global bakeries based in Germany, France, Italy and Spain. Although some observers believe the bread category in-store bakery-deli market is slowing or even approaching saturation, many international companies exhibiting at I.D.D.B.A. obviously think there is plenty of opportunity for new and innovative bakeries entering the market.