Walk down the aisle with a cake from aisle 7 was the article in Wall Street Journal on 6/20/12. Did you all see it? Well, in short, all the supermarkets (Publix, Albertsons, Safeway, Supervalue) have "started to muscle their way into the fancy-fondant realm, adding new designs & flavors to woo brides who want a fancy cake" Albertsons has brought in a full-time wedding consultant to help couples. Publix in southern states advertises in bridal magazines and sets up kiosks with cake samples & pictures at wedding shows. Supermarket bakers are now taking professional cake classes several times a year to keep up with trends. Whereas the average cost of wedding cake with some small bakeries can cost up to $1000....the supermarket cakes, for 3 tier, is about $350.
My daughter attend a bridal show last week in Fla. and Publix was there with pictures and samples and the price was just that......$350. Publix have started to offer what they call "inexpensive features", such as monograms different sizes & shapes. They also pull in decorators from their other locations to complete an order. So, here we go again, tighten our belts, and face the competition!
I'm not surprised, midmarket demand (customers who want something better than a grocery store cake but can't afford high-end shops) is much greater than the available supply in many areas, so increasingly you will see low-end retailers stretching upmarket and high-end retailers stretching downmarket (like Carlo's) to take advantage of this.
Here is a link to the article:
I had a lady that works for Publix take Wilton's Fondant class as Publix was going to put fondant cakes into their line up. They wanted to do dummy cakes for display and of course, someone would need to know how to work with and use the fondant. She plans on take the 4th course which is gumpaste flowers on wire. I always explain that when you order a cake from me my layers are much higher than those from a supermarket and many times it helps that they know this.
Thanks Jason_Kraft for posting the link!
I'm sure that they'll draw a segment of the population, but what I dread is trying to explain why the supermarkets are NOT my competition.
Not all supermarket cakes are "bad", but they are, in no way, as carefully prepared or as flavorful as mine. My ingredients are more "premium"---and, my tiers are taller, too.
I explain that it's comparing apples to oranges, Kias to BMWs, quartz to diamonds, .............
I worked for a Publix and the wedding cake tiers were always 4". They use SPS so it has to be 4". And actually they have some designs now with 6" tiers. I think it's a quality cake considering the price. But no, it doesn't compare to anything from scratch.
Hmm im not in the U.S. but U.S. trends soon filter down to the Caribbean. Interesting smartmoney video posted above. I have seen our largest bread baking company venture into fondant cakes 3 yrs ago and offer "more affordable" custom wedding cakes. However, they only offer chocolate, sponge and red velvet. Their quality is rock bottom low but they get tonnes of wedding cake jobs. There will always be a market for ppl who have champagne taste and mauby pocket.