BakeMark urges bakers to invest in high quality ingredients

By Caroline Scott-Thomas

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Cost, Recession, Fat

BakeMark UK has advised that “economising is not the same as down trading” and has suggested that using premium quality ingredients is the most important factor in remaining competitive – even if that means comparatively higher costs.

The company has drawn on a range of recent market research which appears to show that although customers are tightening their belts in the economic downturn, they are as yet unwilling to compromise on quality.

Business unit director for Artisan at BakeMark UK Ivor Mckane said: “Consumers want to save money but are not prepared to compromise on quality, so using lesser products may prove more costly in the long run.”

The company has also drawn attention to the higher costs of its own products in comparison to some other alternatives on the market, although it claims that this is outweighed by the benefits of increased quality.

Mckane said: “If you compare the cost in use of a BakeMark product and a less premium product, the price difference per item is minimal compared with the increase in quality from using one of our products.”

BakeMark bases this claim on a recent survey conducted by the Institute of Grocery Distribution, which showed that although 57 per cent of customers claimed to have made an effort to cut their grocery bills, only ten per cent said they felt they had compromised on quality.

In addition, the company cited data from market researchers TNS, which showed that in the 12 week period ending November 30, although fewer people were shopping in bakeries, those who did were shopping there more frequently – up 15.6 per cent on the same period in the previous year.

Differing strategies

Although BakeMark is advising against substituting premium ingredients for cheaper ones, many other ingredients suppliers have been looking at strategies to cut costs by replacing more expensive ingredients with less expensive options, while aiming to maintain consumer acceptability of flavour and texture.

One of the main focus areas for this approach is in fat replacement, where using starches instead of fats and oils is becoming an increasingly popular option, as it can not only reduce costs but also help companies to adhere to government targets for fat reduction.

However, BakeMark is not alone in promoting the quality ahead of cost message. Recently DSM launched its Quality for Life seal, designed to assure consumers of the sustainability, traceability and overall quality of its ingredients.

BakeMark has also said that local bakeries could benefit from the economic slowdown, as consumers look to save on fuel by shopping closer to home.

Related topics: Ingredients

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