KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, US — The breakfast eating occasion in the in-store bakery channel has been on fire for months, fueling umpteen options for new product innovation or simply adding items that expand a bakery’s share of this market.

In many categories, both dollar sales and unit volume are rising at double-digit rates.

“We’re seeing interest from not just small retailers or large ones,” said Yianny Caparos, president, Crown Bakeries, Brentwood, Tenn. “In-store bakery operators are looking to expand the breakfast items they offer.”

Crown Bakeries recently bolstered its breakfast product portfolio with new cinnamon rolls that come in four-packs or family-style eight-packs. The company also introduced a 2-oz, grab-and-go item that’s similar to a muffin top, but it’s slightly larger and comes in varieties ranging from fruity blueberry to a savory cornbread snack.

“It’s not just a breakfast item, but an all-day snack that’s individually wrapped that can be thrown into a lunchbox or taken to work,” Mr. Caparos said.

Liz Rayo, senior vice president, marketing and innovation, CraftMark Bakery, Indianapolis, pointed out that sales in the muffin segment top $1 billion in the bakery perimeter, and volumes are up 20% vs. the prior year.

“We all know inflation is driving dollar sales, but the volume of muffins is going through the roof, and it’s so exciting to see that in a mature category,” she said. “Why? People love muffins. They’re a great morning food, and they’re a fresh-baked, wholesome bakery item.”

When bakers are looking for opportunities for growth, the breakfast eating occasion provides a way to start the day off right.