KANSAS CITY — Despite inflation and more budget-conscious consumers, brioche is hitting all of the hot buttons.

“Premiumization is driving it,” said Neil Pittman, US sales director, St. Pierre Group, which is now a part of Grupo Bimbo. “It’s still a relatively low price point product and a small indulgent treat that is within reach of most shoppers. That’s why we’re seeing really strong volume growth.”

In fact, Mr. Pittman said St. Pierre is experiencing more than 10% volume growth plus 22% sales growth of the brand. He said company research indicates there’s room for market expansion because only 63% of shoppers know what brioche is and how it pairs with other food.

“There is still a huge market that we’re not into, and the one thing that brands give is that they signpost the whole brioche category and educate consumers as to what brioche is,” he said. “We give them recipe ideas and what occasions to use them with. That’s what St. Pierre does well, and that’s how to use brioche whereas private label struggles to communicate that message to shoppers. It’s a big market and growing.”

He’s not concerned about the onslaught of other bakers venturing into the segment because it raises awareness of brioche overall.

“There have been a lot of entrants into the market, including big bakery manufacturers, of which we’re one, now being part of Grupo Bimbo,” Mr. Pittman said. “It’s great flattery when competitors copy us in the market.”

 When it comes to baked foods, consumers perceive them as a great value, especially for the premium offerings in the market.