The BSB Autumn Conference 2017 featured a fantastic line-up of speakers from across the bakery industry, making for a fun and informative day for our guests. Here are a few of the incredible facts we learned throughout the day.
1) Grupo Bimbo vans make 79 trips around the earth every day.
That’s about 1,768,000 miles! With 196 plants and 1700 sales centres in 32 countries producing more than 60 million units every day, efficiency is key at the world’s largest bakery company. Cliff Irwin showed us how this ethos runs throughout the company, both in their relationship with over 136,000 ‘associates’ – who are never referred to as employees – and in their dedication to state-of-the-art equipment and processes – with some sites running at just 0.5% waste.
2) Under 25s are the least likely to eat sliced bread
Emma Clifford of Mintel gave us loads of great info about consumer trends in the industry, including this trend among millennials. With bread consumption falling, partly due to a rise in low carb diets, millennials are leading most of the trends. Innovation and health might be key in bread sales, as almost half of under 35s are interested in high protein bread, and a rise in the number of people who identify as ‘foodies’; a group who are more likely to buy bread with healthy ingredients and interesting flavours or textures.
3) The Next Generation of Bakers are eager to make their mark
Students from The National Bakery School fielded questions from our audience on their ambitions and what they thought they could bring to the industry. It’s fair to say, industry leaders were impressed with their responses. Watch the full video below:
— BritishBakingSociety (@BSBuk) October 11, 2017
4) Pain Paillasse hand twist 100,000 rolls per day.
Each one is still baked in a traditional wood fire too! Already, the most popular bread brand in Switzerland, Pain Paillasse is capitalising on consumers’ love of speciality bread to promote their patented dual fermentation process worldwide. With brand ambassadors like 3 Michelin starred chef, Georges Blanc, their story is certainly attracting attention all over Europe and in the UK.
5) McGhee’s Bakery acquired 9 business in 10 years.
The incredible growth of McGhees under the stewardship of Gordon McGhee is down to careful planning and dedication from the third generation of this baking family. Now in their 82nd year, McGhee’s bakery is one of the largest in Scotland, employing over 250 people in sites from Glasgow to Aberdeenshire and turning over £600,000 per week. Gordon shared a few of the secrets of his growth plan with guests, including his golden rule of ‘never allowing a single customer to account for more than 10% of your business’.
Gordon also gave some sage advice to our panel of bakery students, telling them:
“Don’t be afraid to show off your capabilities”
6) Millennials love gluten-free muffins.
The UK has seen a 16% growth in gluten-free diets since 2015, which, while impressive, is nowhere near Italy’s 31% growth in the same period! As with many other food trends, millennials are driving fashions, with 16-44s much more attracted to gluten-free products than older age groups, although across all groups, gluten-free is perceived as a healthier alternative. The main takeaway from Anna-Lena Hamann’s paper was that gluten-free is no longer a ‘niche’ product, with many different types of consumers trying gluten-free alternatives.
Downloads of all Conference presentations are available from the 2017 Autumn Conference Page