KANSAS CITY — At IBIE 2022, bakers sought to bolster capacity at a time when labor and supply chain issues have eaten into profitability while there are often frustratingly abundant opportunities for new business.

Nick Magistrelli, vice president of sales, Rademaker, noted that bakers searched for ways to track and harness data to better understand how their machines are operating.

“Line efficiencies, preventive maintenance and uptime have never been so critical as they are now,” he said. “These lines have to be easier than ever to run with today’s labor situation.”

Mitch Lindsey, senior sales account manager, Burford Corp., said IBIE 2022 gave much-needed opportunities to show how new technology allows bakeries to operate more efficiently in today’s dynamic market.

“There’s a lot of excitement of showing what’s new at this show,” he said. “We get a chance to explain the equipment, what advantages it provides the baker and what the return on investment is for them.”

Before the show, Dennis Gunnell, president, Formost Fuji and IBIE chairman, reflected on how the baking industry stepped up since March 2020 to serve customers and consumers.

“We need to look at how the baking industry as a whole handled the pandemic,” he explained. “We had the same problems that everyone else had, but we put bread out the door. We put muffins on the shelf. People kept making it. It was — and is — a huge challenge, but we got it done, and that’s why the industry should celebrate at IBIE.”

Yes, IBIE was a celebration of an industry coming together to make it stronger going forward.