With the U.S.’s Hispanic population exceeding 52 million and projected to eclipse 100 million by 2050, they make up a significant portion of the consumer demand. According to Mintel’s 2017 In-Store Bakeries report:

  • 81 percent of Hispanic Millennials have a strong regard for in-store bakeries and are quite interested in items for holiday occasions, special events, and with a greater diversity of flavors.
  • Hispanic consumers as a whole are more open to using bakery items at family gatherings or as treats for co-workers, and are more likely to factor all-natural ingredients into their purchase decisions.
  • Hispanic women – particularly older women – tend to be more likely to be gatekeepers of what makes it into the household, and there is a desire to purchase items everyone will enjoy.

Building off of these insights, King’s Pastry has now released a study exploring Hispanic shopping habits and product preferences around bakery desserts, specifically cakes, pastries and cookies. Highlights include:

  • When compared to their parents, 45 percent of Hispanics consider themselves to be more selective and 42 percent are willing to pay more for quality.
  • 75 percent of Hispanics shop in-store bakeries for their desserts, but coffee shops, local bakeries and ethnic bakeries all over-indexed compared to U.S. bakery consumers as a whole.
  • Over 30 percent of Hispanics consider themselves a “foodie” and/or “selectively choosy” in how they shop, with perceived quality the biggest factor, while 35 percent consider themselves “explorers” seeking out new and interesting products.

Supporting Mintel’s findings, Hispanics have also shown their trust in bakery cakes for family gatherings, parties and get-togethers.

  • 61 percent of Hispanics purchase cakes just for their family to enjoy while 52 percent purchases for parties/get-togethers, both of which over-index compared to U.S. bakery consumers as a whole.
  • 81 percent of Hispanics are looking for cakes with 8 or more servings
  • On average, Hispanics are willing to pay up to $2.70 per serving if they perceive a cake to be high quality, proving that overall value is more important than low prices.

Despite their love of bakery desserts, Hispanics are not turning to in-store bakeries as often as they would like.

  • When asked to compare in-store bakeries to independent bakeries across quality, taste, freshness, visual appeal, assortment and overall experience, in-store bakeries fell short for every criteria. The degree of separation proved greater than the separation for U.S. bakery consumers as a whole.
  • 80 percent of Hispanics indicated there were desserts missing from in-store bakeries that they could find at independent bakeries, with Hispanic/Latin American cakes, pastries and cookies each listed by over 45 percent of Hispanics as what was missing.
  • 50 percent of Hispanics consider Tres Leches cake to be their favorite cake flavor, but only half of them can find it at in-store bakeries. Their second-favorite, Coconut, could only be found at in-store bakeries by 40 percent of Hispanics.

The findings of this study highlight exactly why King’s Pastry has made Latin American flavors a focus of their recently launched Château Bakery line featuring premium, internationally-inspired layered bar cakes. As in-store bakeries begin expanding their cake assortment to appeal to Hispanic consumers, King’s Pastry predicts an uptick in traffic and sales as retailers begin stealing share from local bakeries that have proven to be formidable competition over the past few decades. Given that Millennials and Gen-X have both indicated an appreciation for unique, international flavor profiles, the move is sure to be well-received all around.