Some people innately embody a strong entrepreneurial spirit. Such is the case with Joel Clark, CEO of Kodiak Cakes, Park City, UT, a pioneer in better-for-you baking, offering whole-grain, protein-enhanced products that currently span multiple categories across breakfast, snacking, and beyond.
If it seems as though what's not in a product these days is as important as what is, you're not imagining things. The insistence on "clean" and "simple" ingredients that began with a fringe of vigilant label readers has pervaded the marketplace.
Companies that make pans for the baking industry, whether for breads, baguettes, muffins, cookies, cakes, pies, etc., are focused on issues like larger sizes, a desire for energy and material efficiency, stick resistance, and the ability to help produce specialty and artisanal products.
The latest technological advances in label production provide bakery and snack producers with the flexibility to run a wide range of label sizes and types. New systems also enhance product appeal and better communicate information on food content.
Snack mixes and nuts are holding steady in the market. IRI, Chicago, reports sales of snack nuts grew 1.4 percent to $4.8 billion, and sales of nutritional snacks/trail mixes grew 2.3 percent to $1.2 billion for the 52 weeks ending December 29, 2019.
Traceability is essential in the snack and baking industry. Ingredients always need to be tracked, and this is especially important in the case of a recall. These days, implementing a comprehensive software suite is often an essential step in establishing a strong food safety program.
It's vital to get flavor and color right when developing snack and bakery products. Color helps establish the consumer's initial expectations of a product, and flavor is a critical part of delivering against those expectations.
As a home baker, I'm constantly trying to figure out how to add more whole grains to my breads. I love the nuttiness that comes through, and the nutrition is essential to my family. Our toaster gets significant use every morning, and I need to feel good about the way my family starts the day.
Since grains are the cornerstone of a healthful, plant-based diet, and the 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans are the bedrock for nutrition policy in the U.S., the baking industry is well-positioned to make powerful, positive changes for the health of America's families.