home-bakingBaking at home has enjoyed a revival as consumers rediscover the joys of baking. It is now being heralded as the latest trend as cookery programmes on TV, recipe books like the extremely successful The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook, online websites with a plethora of baking recipes and lifestyle magazines feature indulgent recipes, encouraging consumers to try their hand at baking.

Baking from scratch has become a more appealing proposition for consumers as it enables them to have greater control over the ingredients used, and benefit from cost savings, compared to ready-prepared alternatives.

Despite the trend towards healthy eating, consumers have taken a greater interest in home baking, driving value sales in the home baking market up by 12.7% between 2007 and 2009. The market is expected to grow by a further 9.1% in 2010, taking sales to £576 million.

The revival in home baking is being led by 16-34-year-olds who are baking at home more now compared to a year ago.

As many consumers are not baking frequently (58% bake once a month or more) they are more willing to spend more on quality premium ingredients that enable them to create something special especially if they are going to the trouble of baking from scratch.

Within the market, the flour category has been most adversely affected by rising commodity prices. The price per tonne of wheat increased by 17.6% between 2007 and 2009, peaking in March 2008 when the price per tonne rose by about 50%. The flour category has been helped by consumers’ desire to bake from scratch using raw ingredients, and has seen the category grow by 19.4% between 2007 and 2009.

While baking from scratch has become increasingly popular, baking mixes offer consumers a convenient and cost-effective alternative. Consumers have been faced with the rising price of culinary nuts and dried fruit as their wholesale prices increased in 2009.  Fluctuating currency rates as well as supply shortages due to crop failures in producer markets put pressure on costs. An increase in worldwide demand for nuts and dried fruit also put pressure on supplies.

Just over a quarter of consumers (28%) are baking from scratch using raw ingredients at least once a week, compared to 15% who prefer the convenience of baking mixes.

Just over two thirds of consumers have bought raw baking ingredients in the last year; this is a reflection of consumers’ preference to bake from scratch.

Standard cakes were the most baked item, with 25-34-year-olds and households with children the most likely to be indulging in these home-baked cakes.

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