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Will GBBO's move to Channel 4 make the "bake off effect" even stronger?


The Great British Bake Off (GBBO) is back in season, and retailers are falling over themselves to cater for the onslaught of home bakers that flock to supermarkets every week to replicate the recipes.

Its effect on consumer demand continues to grow, and retailers are having to come up with inventive ways to ensure items that appear in each episode are well stocked in-store.

Results from online retail analyst Summit show that interest in Viennese whirls rose by 2000 per cent in the evening of the second show.

This followed a 900 per cent rise in the number of searches for Jaffa Cakes after the first week.

It’s not just ingredients. Interest in proving draws soared by 7500 per cent after the show started, and interest in food mixers and rolling pins were up 400 and 100 per cent respectively.

Grocery giant Morrisons recently appointed Anastasia Duncanson as its specialist “Bake Officer” in order to keep up with the demand generated by the programme.

RELATED: Morrisons appoints Bake Officer in preparation for the Great British Bake Off

Duncanson has advised the retailer to stock 1.5 times the store’s standard amount of flour, including speciality flours such as wholemeal spelt to ensure its 11 million customers are able to create the savoury-plaited centrepiece showstoppers featured.

They also reported a rise in sales of 11 per cent since the latest GBBO season started. 

“Morrisons has seen a record spike in the sale of ginger with demand up 28 per cent on previous weeks," Duncanson said.

“Following last night’s episode where contestants made chocolate bread, I predict dark chocolate, nuts, cranberries and seeds to be best-sellers in the coming weeks as they were all used quite heavily in last night’s episode across two of the three bakes, along with great time-saving products such as bread mixes, and will be stocking the shelves in our 492 stores accordingly. 

“We may even see a rise in plums used for the sauce in the unusual dampfnudel technical challenge.”

Tesco have also taken measures to keep up with the huge fluctuations in demand, stocking brand new baking items like revamped recipes of own label sweet cake mixes, own-label royal icing and a range of Dr Oetker-flavoured drizzles in time for the show's launch.

RELATED: ‘The Bake Off Effect’ drives sales at Waitrose

It also reported a 50 per cent rise in sales of golden syrup, vanilla extract and ginger. Orange jelly also soared by 60 per cent.

Tesco Home Baking buyer Siu Hoang said: “We know how popular Bake Off is so we watch the programme each week to help customers have everything they need and keep up with the latest baking trends featured on the show.”

News of the GBBO's departure from the BBC, along with today’s revelation that the show’s hosts Sue Perkins or Mel Giedroyc will also be leaving, has raised concerns nationwide over whether the bakery powerhouse can survive the transition.

However, Summit head of insight Martin Corcoran believes a channel with more advertising freedom will exacerbate the effect.

“The show has a huge impact on customer demand which represents a great opportunity for retailers and manufacturers to boost sales and grow their brand," he said.

“The move to Channel 4 could see the shows consumer influence increase with even more on screen branding and advertising opportunities – already this year, we have seen sales of kitchen aids double since the start of the show, without a huge on screen push.

“Watching TV while browsing online is now the norm for many viewers and we have seen the significant impact of GBBO on customer behaviour almost instantaneously.”

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Published on Wednesday 14 September by Ben Stevens

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