We’ve had many thousands of bread tins, pizza trays, pie hoops etc. pass through for recoating this year and have had business from lots of loyal customers and many new ones.

As 2015 draws to an end, we thought we’d look ahead to next year to try to predict what changes and trends might take place in the UK bakery sector during 2016.

Without further ado, here are our 6 predictions for the UK bakery sector in 2016:

Innovation in traditional baked goods

We can see a trend continuing when it comes to how people want to consume traditional baked goods. A recent example of this was the introduction of thin bagels by Warburtons and others.

As consumers get choosier and more specific about what they do and don’t want to eat, and look for something new, we can see more tweaking of traditional baked goods to meet changing tastes and habits.

Innovation in ingredients

As people continue to be more health and environmentally conscious, there is likely to be innovation in terms of ingredients. There has recently been a lot in the press about Tunnock’s using palm oil in their tea cakes and wafers for example.

Ingredients which have traditionally been used in breads, biscuits and cakes may come under more intense scrutiny, leaving bakeries to explore what the public consider to be healthier and more ethical alternatives.

This will also see a return to more natural ingredients that were used in food manufacture long before the modern industrial era. A recent example of this is turmeric being used in goods such as Paleo diet-friendly wraps.

Changes to product shape

As competition between bakeries intensifies further for supermarket shelf space in 2016, we envisage more bespoke products that are likely to stand out for consumers.

With the Euro 2016 football championships and the Olympics in Rio happening next year for example, there is plenty of scope for makers of baked good and snacks to try to capitalise on the popularity of these sporting events and differentiate themselves in a saturated market.

One order we had during 2015 was for recoating fish-shaped fortune cookie moulds.

Clearer product labelling

As we mentioned earlier, consumers care more about what they’re eating than ever before. As well as innovation in healthy new ingredients, labelling is likely to get even more transparent and easier to understand.

A growth in e-commerce

While online grocery shopping in the UK has grown to around 11%, in our opinion this will increase even further in 2016. However, we think this won’t just be in a traditional supermarket sense, but also that smaller bakeries will embrace technology more to give their customers what they want, when they want it.

There are already many artisan bakeries selling speciality breads, pizza bases etc online and this is an area that looks set to gain even more traction in 2016 as consumers look around for products they can’t get in the big supermarkets.

If you look at craft beer as an example, five years ago there was barely a market at all online and now it’s growing significantly year on year.

An increase in baked goods from around the world

Our final prediction is that different baked goods from around the world will be introduced to the UK mainstream market by one or more of the big players.

These could be in the form of dark rye bread from Finland, Jamaican bammy, the bialy or something else entirely. We feel the time is right for a ‘new kid on the block’ to grab a slice of the traditional bread market though.

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