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Ingredients and mixes benefit from boom in home baking

Despite the apparently inexorable rise of convenience foods and the “cash-rich, time-poor” consumer, some parts of the world have maintained a high level of interest in home baking from scratch. Other countries, such as the US and the UK, had definitely moved away from home baking, preferring to buy prepared cakes in a ready-to-eat format, tending to lose interest even in bakery mixes, let alone baking from scratch. 
According to Lu Ann Williams, Director of Innovation at Innova Market Insights: “It is these latter nations that are now seeing a reversal in fortunes for the home baking market, with it rising again from the ashes, driven initially perhaps by financial constraints but more recently by the runaway success of TV shows featuring celebrity chefs and bakers and reality-style competitions, perhaps most famously the UK’s Great British Bake Off.”
 “This has impacted not only on the ingredients used for baking from scratch, such as flour, culinary fruit and nuts and decorations and coatings,” she contends, “but also the bakery mixes market, which can still provide an acceptable middle ground between going totally back to basics and buying in fully prepared convenience options.”
Launches of bakery ingredients and mixes recorded by Innova Market Insights rose to well over 5,000 globally in the 12 months to the end of March 2014, accounting for over 14.5% of total bakery introductions over the same period, up from 13.5% in the previous 12-month period and from less than 10% five years previously. As might be expected with the number of countries, cultures and cuisines involved, Europe led launch activity, with nearly 37% of the total. Western Europe alone accounted for nearly 30% of launches, while Asia had about one-fifth, North America 16% and Latin America just under 10%.
The significance of bakery ingredients and mixes for each region can perhaps be better illustrated in terms of share of bakery launches as a whole. Australia leads here, with ingredients and mixes accounting for over 30% of total bakery launches in the country, ahead of the US with over 22%, Latin America with just over 16% and Western Europe with over 15%. 
There are significant differences between countries, however, with the rise of home baking in the UK, resulting in launches reaching over 20% of total bakery introductions. This is up from 10% five years previously and taking it well ahead of the Western European average.
Williams concludes: “This momentum will need to be maintained as companies seek to improve the accessibility of home baking and offer increasingly sophisticated and value-added innovations and novelties. There has been a growing focus on premium products, including chef-endorsed lines, new formats such as liquid mixes, ready-to-use packs, and more complex and sophisticated decorative options, as well as a whole range of character-licensed products for the children’s market.”

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