KANSAS CITY — During the past few months, supply chain challenges have taken their toll. Retail in-store bakery/delis, for instance, struggled to fill orders for holiday meals because of labor and packaging shortages. As a result, some turned to creative alternatives to get the job done.
In one case, Anne-Marie Roerink, principal and founder of 210 Analytics, saw cookies sold in packaging normally used for rotisserie chicken. During a December webinar on bakery trends by the International Dairy Deli Bakery Association, she pointed out in-store bakeries also had to deal with high prices and limited supply of key ingredients, such as eggs, milk, flour and sugar. She added some supermarkets are exploring the elimination of their fresh perimeter service departments and providing only prepacked products because of the labor shortage and other challenges.
“We’re going to continue to see wider supply chain issues impact in-store bakery,” Ms. Roerink said. “In fact, (it’s) just like what we’re seeing relative to the meat department. There are a lot of retailers that are wondering, ‘Do I need that full-service department?’”
She noted the shifting demographics are also driving the move away from working bakeries in supermarkets.
“Is the younger shopper intrigued with that service department and the in-store bakery?” Ms. Roerink asked while comparing the attitudes of younger and older supermarket shoppers who visit fresh perimeter departments.
“That’s something to keep in mind because at the end of the day, the dollar is going to be very rapidly shifting here from boomers to Generation-Xers to millennials on down, and that means a different focus within the store,” she said.