The world is going through a critical phase right now, the pandemic has left us crippled, but industries are finding new ways to overcome this situation.
The food and beverages industry has greatly suffered due to the lack of customers in shops and restaurants. Here we will discuss how COVID has changed the industry, especially the baking sector, and what new trends have taken hold.
Customers are reluctant to buy food products from crowded market places or with any direct contact as they are not yet assured of the level of hygiene, safety, and care put into the products are up to COVID standards.
To reinvigorate their business, they need to adapt to the newer principles, mindset and structure new strategies that can comply with the norms to tackle COVID and the people’s concerns.
Practices that the Baking Industry Adopted to turn around
Delivery: Contactless and Seamless
If we talk about the time before the pandemic, people loved to rush to the nearest cake shop and order their favorites or simply buy ones that looked tasty enough. But in the current state where the streets are empty, and people are afraid to even go near a crowd, it’s time for the bakers to start taking responsibility for how their products get delivered on their customers’ doorsteps because they are not coming to you.
Businesses must start to improve their customer service divisions and offer the clients comfort and confidence, ensure them that their food is in safe hands or gloves, for that matter. Ensure that you have a good reach at least over every corner of the local neighborhood, hire enough delivery agents for support. Proper packaging techniques and cashless transactions are encouraged in order to limit physical contact and exposure. Bakeries should be able to take orders 24/7(a small website should take care of that) and provide either doorstep delivery or self-pickup on time.
Food and Kitchen Hygiene
Even before COVID, hygiene has always been a major concern when it comes to eating out or ordering in. It is that inevitable part of the food industry that has now has become more crucial during the pandemic. For baked goods, the ingredients used should be of good quality and stored at the proper temperatures to keep them from spoiling. It’s best to sell fresh products each day rather than mass-producing them.
Any chief/baker knows that keeping the working environment clean and germ-free is the best way to ensure excellent food. In the post COVID era, gloves, hairnets, masks, and airtight containers are the norm. In order to win the trust of the consumers, companies and even home bakers try to be transparent in all their stages of production and distribution.
Other standard hygienic practices now include regular testing for COVID, terminating the use of jewelry, and using disposable spoons and other utensils, or thorough sanitation of the tables and door handle regularly. The highest chances of contamination are found in damp areas; thus, any plumbing leaks are repaired immediately.
The slightest evidence of microbiological growth in any products stored is immediately noticed and brought to the supervisor’s attention. The kitchen space is regularly sanitized with proper disinfectants to tackle possibilities of COVID and any other such viruses or bacteria.
On the other hand, companies have started implementing new operating protocols that separate each section’s personals like truckers, vendors, staff from the kitchen, even giving them different break rooms and lockers. And these restrooms are configured to follow proper social distancing. And at the end of the day, everything is wiped down from toolboxes and printers to handwash stations, reducing the risk of contamination.
Rising of Comfort Foods
Comfort foods are basically delicious food items characterized mainly by their high caloric nature or simply food that invokes nostalgic feelings. During the many months following COVID, people have taken to what they know instead of trying new things like mom’s recipes, childhood snacks, Oreos, and the classic bakery items are now in demand. A familiar taste in an unknown time can remind people of the good times.
Even though some of them can be unhealthy, these items still have a lot to do with our mental health, and there have been situations where adults have started having tantrums because of the lack of the favorite snacks. Most comfort food falls in the category of baked goods; that’s why the demand increased even during COVID; the only thing that changed over the months is how people shop.
There are recipes made of dark chocolates, fresh fruits, and almonds that contain enough antioxidants and minerals to keep you healthy even if you overdo it a little.