NPD: What’s sweetening the bakery aisle?

By Gill Hyslop

- Last updated on GMT

Pic: GettyImages/laughingmango
Pic: GettyImages/laughingmango

Related tags Sweet baked goods pandoro donuts Muffins Jaffa Cakes pretzels

Globally, teatime continues to maintain its relevance in modern society, providing an opportunity to socialize with family and friends, foster a sense of community and relaxation. And as consumers get more adventurous with their tastebuds, bakery producers are stepping up to weave international influences, florals and a touch of nostalgia into their treats.

Bringing Italy to the US

Bauli_Pandoro_500g US_

Americans are showing their love for Italian products. In 2023, Italian exports to the US grew an additional 5.4% over 2022, setting a historical record with a total value of $72.9bn: making Italy the 11st largest supplier country to the American market.

Jumping on the back of this is family owned Bauli, which showcased its products at the Summer Fancy Food Show in New York City, including its iconic holiday pandoro box, panettone, croissants, cakes, crackers, bruschetta, amaretti and more.

The company started as a small artisan bakery in 1922 in Verona. At the turn of the century, it embarked on a mission to share the art of Italian baked goods with the world and today, sells its products in over 70 countries. It has now set its sights on doubling its US footprint over the next two years.

Combining over a century of baking experience with modern tech, Bauli’s dedication to quality and innovation ensures that each product is crafted with attention to detail, making every bite a celebration of Italian baked goods.

“We are proud to bring the combination of tradition and innovation in the baking industry that has distinguished our Group for more than 100 years to the Summer Fancy Food Show,” said CEO Fabio Di Giammarco.

“This event represented an important opportunity in our international growth strategy. It was a crucial moment to strengthen relations with key international stakeholders and to consolidate the positioning of the Bauli brand as an ambassador of ‘Made in Italy’ excellence in the food sector.”

Walker’s unlocks a new snacking format

Mini Chocolate Chip

Walker’s Shortbread has introduced a snacking range that’s designed for on-the-go snacking.

Wee Shorties takes Walker’s all-butter shortbread icons and shrinks them down to mini size, initially available in two SKUs:  Wee Shorties Mini Shortbread Fingers and Wee Shorties Chocolate Chip, both available as a 15 bag multi pack (RRP £15.50), on shelf exclusively in WHSmith Travel within Global Travel Retail (GTR).

Following significant growth in the GTR channel over the past year, Walker’s expects Wee Shorties to drive further success by tapping into new consumption moments. The snackable format will appeal to time-poor shoppers looking for a tasty but easily transportable snack.

“With so many great ways to enjoy shortbread, we’ve made it our mission at Walker’s to show the world just how exciting and versatile shortbread can be,” said MD Nicky Walker.

“They say the best things come in small packages and with Wee Shorties that really is the case.

“Available in a convenient, snackable format, Wee Shorties fits in with commuters and travellers busy lives, while delivering the same great taste and quality that Walker’s iconic shortbread is known for. The individual serving sizes also reflect the growing demand for more mindful snacking without compromising on taste or quality, which means consumers can still experience the Joy of Shortbread in moderation.”

Yorkshire Baking Company expands Limited Edition range


Traditionally baked to a classic recipe, the Jam & Coconut Mega Loaf (£2.50) is a modern twist on the ever-popular flavor that Brits so love.

It comes just two months after the initial roll out of company’s Limited Edition Banana Mega Loaf and Carrot Mega Loaf in Morrisons.

“This summer, we wanted to introduce something new and exciting to the bakery market, whilst the combination of jam and coconut remains a British classic, it was our aim to add our own modern twist by launching this family favourite in our great value Mega Loaf format,” said sales director Arainn Cleland.

“To support the launch in Morrisons stores, we are also delighted to be bringing back both of our recently launched Limited Edition Mega Loaves – Banana and Carrot. With all three limited editions available for a limited time, a great tasting trio will be at hand for consumers to enjoy.”

Flipz capitalizes on the UK love of cinnamon


pladis has expanding its fast-growing ‘swavory’ snack brand Flipz with the introduction of a limited-edition cinnamon bun inspired flavor.

Set to appeal to shoppers on the lookout for innovative sharing snacks inspired by the hottest trending flavors, Flipz Cinnamon Bun Flavour is aimed at a delivering a new take on the three-dimensional taste and texture sensation that has already won the brand an army of loyal fans.

This time, the familiar crunchy and salty Flipz pretzels have been enveloped in a sweet cinnamon bun flavored coating.

“UK consumption of cinnamon products has increased by 59.5% since 2016, partly thanks to the growing popularity of bakeries that specialise in cinnamon buns,” said marketing director Adam Woolf.

“And with 14% CAGR forecasted for cinnamon products between now and 2027, now is the perfect time for us to expand the Flipz range with this on trend flavor.”

The £12.7m brand first hit shelves in the UK in 2018 following sensational success in the US, with its classic Milk Chocolate variant, before adding a stream of attention-grabbing and on-trend flavors like Cookies & Cream, Peanut Butter and Salted Caramel.

“Popular with snacking customers seeking inspiration, Flipz also performs particularly well in convenience, recording double digit value and volume growth of +30% and +18% respectively,” said Woolf.

Limited-edition Flipz Cinnamon Bun Flavour is available in convenience retail and wholesale channels, including Co-op and NISA, in a 90g sharing pouch (£1.65) and an 80g PMP (£1.25).

Jaffa Cakes get an unexpected flavor fusion


Combining one of the UK’s favorite sweets with one of Britain’s best-loved snacks, McVitie’s Jaffa Cakes Cola Bottle Flavour features the familiar sponge and dark chocolate, but the orange centre is switched out for a cola jelly in a bid to whet the appetites of younger shoppers seeking unique flavor combinations.

Although pladis is no stranger to launching tasty takes – with flavors like Passion Fruit and Raspberry having added £19.7m in sales since 2021 – this launch marks the first time the brand has experimented beyond fruit.

“Our Original Jaffa Cakes are a store-cupboard staple for 7.1 million UK households and we’ve been building on this success for years by adding a range of fruity flavors to our portfolio,” said Woolf.

“But there’s huge appetite among the next generation of snacking shoppers for something genuinely new and different – and as the original cake in the biscuit aisle, we know a thing or two about doing something different.

“McVitie’s Jaffa Cakes Cola Bottle Flavour is tailormade for those who’ve got the bottle to branch out and give bold new flavor combinations a go. We’re also very confident this will appeal to shoppers, having come out on top as the best-performing flavour amongst 18-34 year-olds in our pre-launch testing.”

McVitie’s Jaffa Cakes Cola Bottle Flavour will also be launching in packs of 5 individually wrapped Cake Bars that come in at just 97kcals each.

McVitie’s Jaffa Cakes Cola Bottle Flavour is rolling out across all major supermarkets in packs of 10 from the end of July (£1.25). The Cake Bars will follow in Tesco from July 22, before rolling out more widely from mid-August (RRP: £1.80).

Baker & Baker launches Filly Strawberry donut

summer doughnut LF image crop

The European bakery manufacturer has launched the limited edition donut in the UK.

“Strawberries are always associated with the fun of summertime,” said UK marketing manager Helen Sinclair.

“Our fruity Filly Strawberry treat combines our nations love of strawberries and doughnuts in a single bite. And with a summer of sport set to encourage thousands of consumers to visit food outlets across the UK, what better way to celebrate a win.”

The thaw and serve donut has a two-day shelf life and features a soft ring texture with a fruity strawberry filling and icing with red sugar pearls. It contains no artificial colors, flavors, preservatives or eggs, and is suitable for vegetarians.

The treat has already been launched in key European markets and are now available for UK bakeries, foodservice operators and retailers. Other limited edition donuts will be launched throughout the calendar year.

Sweet butter

CIN_BUN (002)

Disruptive dairy startup All Things Butter has created a brand new category – sweet butter – with the launch of Cinnamon Bun Butter.

The range was developed by Great British Bake Off 2018 finalist Ruby Bhogal, who has joined the company as an equity partner. Cinnamon Bun is the first SKU to launch within the new range and is available from Ocado, Modern Milkman, Gopuff, Zapp and independents, (RRP £3.00, 125g).

All Things Butter debuted a four-strong range of savory butters in November 2023 – developed by cofounder and chef Thomas Straker – and saw almost 250,000 blocks of the Salted, Unsalted, Garlic & Herb and Chilli butters sold in the first six months.

Cinnamon Bun Butter infuses British butter with aromatic cinnamon, sugar and a hint of lemon to bring the warmth of freshly baked cinnamon buns to teatime, ideal for spreading over toast, crumpets, muffins, waffles and much more.

“Our sweet butter range continues to bring new innovation to the butter category which has seen little to none in recent years, creating products that cater to changing consumer preferences and modern day foodies,” said cofounder Toby Hopkinson.

“As we can see from both All Things Butter and Ruby's audiences, consumers are seeking new, interesting flavours in their everyday routines, which is exactly what we aim to offer with our disruptive butter concepts.”

All Things Butter has recently closed a successful investment round of £2.2m to support further retail roll out, with Sainsbury’s and ASDA secured as its latest supermarket retailers.

The return of the virtual summer camp


Entenmann’s Little Bites Snacks has reintroduced its Camp Little Bites virtual summer camp series​for a second year.

This year, Erica Domesek, the creative force and founder behind P.S.- I Made This, joins Camp Little Bites as head camp counselor to lead campers through a summer filled with adventurous activities that encourage their sense of independence and give parents a little more free time to themselves. Domesek has paired her DIY expertise and infectious enthusiasm with a series of six engaging and educational activities designed to spark creativity among campers all from the comfort of home. These fun and entertaining activities provide a perfect setting for children to learn, play and grow, incorporating Little Bites boxes and muffins into the mix.

“Camp Little Bites is all about giving kids the opportunity to try new things and to explore the world with a greater sense of wonder,” said brand manager Lia Arakelian.

“We’re excited to team up with Erica to leverage her expertise in family-friendly DIY projects that not only add a creative twist to our activities but also deeply engage the children in a learning process that's as enjoyable as it is educational. We're looking forward to a summer filled with inspiration, laughter, and, of course, plenty of delicious Little Bites muffins.”

The easy-to-follow activity videos include:

  • Muffin Box Bird Feeder
  • Muffin Box Spaceship
  • 3D Muffin Shapes
  • Campmate S'mores Brownies
  • Tin Foil Boat Challenge
  • Splatter Paint Socks

Additionally, the Bimbo Bakeries USA-owned brand is kicking off a summer full of fun camp-themed giveaways. Until August 6, fans can enter daily for a chance to win a Grizzly-45 cooler, Robotics STEM Kits, a Roasty 'n Toasty Solo Stove Bundle and a US National Parks Pass. Open to legal residents of the 50 US & DC, 18 or older.

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