Will the baking industry still rake in the dough after the pandemic?

Baking goods -- cocoa, flour, yeast -- boomed during the pandemic. The boom may be here to stay.


May 27, 2021

At the onset of the pandemic, baking was the self-care a lot of folks kneaded

Aspiring bakers cleaned both brick-and-mortar and online stores out of supplies, while baking sales rose faster than your sourdough starter.

  • King Arthur Baking Company sold 156m+ pounds of flour in 2020, +58% YoY
  • Sales of baking mixes and ingredients jumped by ~25%, according to market research firm Mintel Group
  • Hershey’s cocoa sales shot up 126% while its baking chips surged 75%
  • Yeast sales increased 647%

But will home bakers keep baking when they’re not stuck at home?

The answer appears to be “yes.”

Calls to King Arthur’s baker’s hotline increased 43% during the pandemic. But in March, King Arthur co-CEO Karen Colberg told Yahoo Finance that they’re still seeing baking levels up 25%-30% over pre-pandemic levels.

Meanwhile, consumer market research firm Hunter conducted a survey that found 71% of Americans plan to keep cooking more at home. Another Mintel Group survey from March found ~⅓ of Americans were baking more often and plan to keep at it.

To keep ovens warm…

… companies in the baking biz are now introducing a slew of new products and features, per The Wall Street Journal:

  • For those who’ve mastered cookies and cakes, America’s Test Kitchen is dropping a new cookbook for “The Savory Baker.”
  • King Arthur’s new “Extraordinary Breads” campaign features 12 recipes beyond sourdough. It also released keto flour.
  • Betty Crocker is launching simple kits for families, including “cookie cups.”

Why, yes, that is a cupcake made with cookie dough.

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