The Next Five Years in Bakery: Flavour, Format & Functionality
20 February 2024

The Next Five Years in Bakery: Flavour, Format & Functionality

The future of bakery longer-term is bright. In APAC, bakery is forecast to achieve 6.8% value growth (CAGR) in the next five years. In EMEA the sector is already worth EUR 91 Billion, with Euromonitor predicting a further 1.3% growth by 2025. This might all sound very appealing, but what can operators actually do to capitalise on this growth?

We've broken the future of bakery down into three parts:

Flavour, Format and Functionality

These parts are all interconnected because each is a consequence of the last. With these insights our goal is to help you:

  • Get to grips with the flavours of the future and discover which ingredients to get on your menu.
  • Understand the new and emerging bakery formats that will be key carriers for these flavour trends.
  • Learn how to optimise product functionality to meet future consumer needs.

Flavour: this is what the future could taste like

Getting to grips with flavour trends can be a minefield, so we’ve done the hard work for you and collated our top 5 trend predictions for the future world of bakery...

Apples & Pears

These two are old staples when it comes to using fruit in baking, but they can offer so much more than just crumbles and tarts. In 2022 we’ll see the intense sweetness of apple and pear flavours being balanced with savoury seasonings such as miso to add an umami dimension. Pear works particularly well with cheese, white chocolate and aromatic spices, whilst we’re already seeing apple paired with coffee, caramel and classic cider.


Format: This is what the future could look like

We’ve already touched on the blurring of formats through hybrid innovations, but the future of baked goods extends beyond the legacy of the Cronut. Artisanal baked goods from emerging micro-bakeries are leading the way in format innovation, many of which emerged during lockdown with ‘direct to consumer’ (D2C) offerings.

“Micro-bakers lack traditional overhead and labour expenses and don’t need to make things appealing to everyone. These innovative creatives can showcase their talents, testing the water with new ideas.”

Largely born from these innovators, these are the formats in baking that we’ll see shift, adapt and emerge in the future.

Doughnuts 2.0

The popularity of doughnuts has never really waned, but this space has historically been dominated by Krispy Kreme. Generally sickly sweet and dense in consistency, the doughnut is now ripe for re-invention. We’re already seeing this re-invention from innovators across the globe, for example Kimberley Camara’s Kora in New York City. Her brioche doughnuts are soft and fluffy and filled with Filipino-inspired flavours that are a nod to her heritage, including salted egg yolk, coconut cream, ube glaze and maraschino cherry.


Functionality: This is what the future could do

The future of bakery will indulge consumers’ senses like never before – but bakery can serve another purpose too. Bakery with a function can help people relax or feel energised, to feel better or to feel a sense of adventure, to support mental wellbeing and spread positivity.

By adding this layer of functionality to the way you position your offering, bakers and operators can stand out from the crowd whilst creating deeper emotional and more purposeful connections with customers.

Supporting mental wellbeing

The connection between bakery and emotional or mental wellbeing has already been strengthened considerably over the course of the pandemic, with many home bakers finding comfort in baking as a pastime. For professional bakers and out of home operators, Mintel believes that the key to baking’s mood-boosting capabilities lies in aroma. The comforting smells associated with baked goods trigger sensors linked to emotion and memory, and calling out the wellbeing benefits of aroma can give your offering a purpose above and beyond taste.

Want to read more on the future of bakery?

Download our free bakery trend report and get even more predictions, tips, and recipes.


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