Founded in 1887 to support the burgeoning artisan bakery sector across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the CBA has grown into a authoritative voice that offers more than just support for approximately 125,000 workers directly or indirectly associated with it.
The CBA represents approximately 500 bakeries from startups to individual operators to businesses operating 50 or more shops.
And at the heart of it is knowledge-sharing.
“We are passionate about the baking industry and keen to pass on our knowledge and expertise to future generations,” said Karen Dear, CBA’s director of Operations.
“The CBA is here to assist the industry, be it through supporting our members and newly qualified bakers, championing our cause, sharing opportunities and offering a place to network, or simply demonstrating our craft to others.
“The Craft Bakers Association has been the voice of craft bakery for nearly 150 years, working with the government and other bodies to safeguard the future of the sector, and the new website is the latest chapter in acting out that commitment.”
One of the key benefits of a CBA membership is its discounted online training programme, available on the new website. The programme allows members to self-manage and coordinate training for themselves and their employees, track their progress, download certificates and much more.
Crossing the labour divide
Today’s labour challenges are having a major impact across the wider food industry – and no less so in the craft sector. In this competitive market, finding qualified team members or students looking for experience is certainly tough.
As such, the CBA has come to the fore with a dedicated ‘matchmaking’ arena on the site: members can promote full time job vacancies and advertise their willingness to offer college students work experience.
Conversely, job seekers – from student to trained baker – are able to post their CVs on the website and even apply for specific openings. Additionally, bakery students can apply for a CBA membership in order to hone their skills in the dedicated student area.
The platform also showcases all CBA Industry Supporters, open to both members and non-members to access services, equipment, ingredients and tech.
“From savings on third party services such as training and health and food safety, to HR and legal advice, membership of the CBA makes great business sense, and the new website takes it a step further, making it even easier to come on board and get more out of your membership,” said Dear.