bake - March 2018 - 3

editor's note

March 2018 / Issue 3


bakery cafes reimagined
The bakery cafe segment has come a long way since the

between The J.M. Smucker Company and Technomic, which

sector began to define itself in the 1990s and early 2000s

are designed to provide the latest consumer and trend insights.

when Panera Bread paved the way for change. During the

One is rising stars in coffee, and the other is "snackified entrees."

recession in the late 2000s, when most restaurant companies
were slowing growth and neglecting the guest experience,

Mini entrees billed as snacks are the current hot-ticket item on

Panera invested in a better guest experience. According to the

many top chain restaurant menus, according to the new reports

company, the result was the most profitable cafes in Panera

Why? Not only has snacking consumption increased, but 27%

history and a soaring stock price that tripled. By the end of the

of 18- to 34-year-olds even say they like to purchase snacks

decade, there were nearly 1,500 Panera bakery cafes.

at restaurants instead of full meals. Plus, a notable 59% of
consumers say it's very important that snacks aren't too large,

The latest transformation at Panera involves a variety of innova-

which is higher than the proportion who say it's important that

tions. Recognizing growing consumer demand for craft offer-

snacks aren't too small (49%).

ings and convenience, the company worked since 2010 to reposition Panera as a better competitive alternative with expanded

It is also valuable to recognize that traditional coffee is the

runways for growth. Panera says it bet on digital, clean food,

most purchased coffee type among consumers today. However,

loyalty and multiple channels of access to products. Panera will

more individuals are also showing interest in seeing a greater

hit $1.2 billion in digital sales this year. They are the first restau-

variety of coffees at foodservice locations, including those that

rant company to commit to and achieve 100% clean food. 

feature new brewing methods and flavors, according to the
reports. Since coffee remains deep-rooted in daily consump-

Further, valuable insights applicable to the bakery cafe

tion habits, operators are innovating more around this beverage

segment can be gleaned from new reports from a collaboration

than ever before to broaden appeal and increase traffic.

JOHN UNREIN | MAR 2018 > 03

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of bake - March 2018