According to IRI data from the week of March 15, total store sales were up 62.5 percent. Although paper goods and other non-edibles had, unsurprisingly, the biggest jump, the bakery aisle jumped 62.3 percent. IRI also found an increase of 44.3 percent for cookies and crackers, combined.
Consumers are looking for easy lunch and dinner options; IRI data showed that functional bakery items such as bread, rolls, and buns had the biggest jump in sales. Bagel and English muffins also had a large increase, of about 50 percent. Bakery items such as pastries, doughnuts and bakery snacks also had increased sales, compared to the same week in 2019.
Cookies and crackers also had large increases. Cracker sales increased by 9.8 percent over the week that ended on March 8. For the week that ended on March 15, crackers were up by 75.6 percent. Cookie sales increased by 50.5 percent for the week ending March 15, versus the same week in 2019.
Since a lot of grocery chains and other retailers have closed or reduced their in-store bakery offerings, sales increases are behind total store sales but still showed a year-over-year growth of 10.3 percent. Categories that showed at least $1 million in weekly sales included croissants, rolls, and bread.
Source: COVID-19: bakery sales jump 44% as a versatile snack and bakery solution, 3/26/20, American Bakers Association.