Bakery items have boosted a ‘sluggish’ out-of-home market in Great Britain with foodservice visits including a bakery product up 1.8%, according to analysts The NPD Group.

Figures from the company’s new Bakery Tracker Service, for the year-ending (y/e) September 2019, revealed that Brits spent £7.9bn on baked goods, accounting for 14% of the industry’s value.

It also showed that visits in which a bakery item was purchased had grown for the past three years in a row – +5.7% y/e September 2017, +3.5% y/e September 2018 and +1.8% y/e September 2019.

Meanwhile, the overall eat-out foodservice industry has been struggling, securing just 0.3% growth this year and a 0.3% loss last year, meaning it has the slowest growth of the top five European markets (France, Italy, Spain, Germany and Great Britain).

The NPD Group predicted further growth for bakery as it believed bakery visits could increase by as much as 10% (or 470m visits) by y/e September 2022.

Bakery is outperforming the total eat-out market for three reasons, according to Peter Linden, insights manager foodservice, The NPD Group.

“First, breakfast on-the-go is popular with consumers who want baked products such as croissants or savoury baps for their first meal of the day. Second, bakery taps into the fast growth in delivery, drive-thru and work-related food-to-go purchases – the ‘off-premise’ side of the industry that is growing seven times faster than ‘on-premise’,” he said.

“Third, sandwiches and wraps meet the need for convenience and represent an affordable way of buying quality, variety and often healthier bakery options.”

A total of 6.2 billion baked goods was bought, with savoury products seeing growth of 2.5%, while sweet ones grew by 2.2%. Sandwiches represented two-thirds of all savoury bakery servings and just over half of total bakery servings.

Top savoury and sweet bakery for y/e September 2019

Top five savoury


Top five sweet



3.1bn / +3%


352m / +0%


569m / +7%

Croissants, pastries and Danish

275m / +4%


312m / -6%


225m / +5%


152m / +12%


142m / -2%

Sausage rolls

132m / +0%


124m / -1%

“British bakery is full of innovation, so perhaps it’s no surprise that servings of old-fashioned staples such as toast and sausage rolls are struggling,” added Linden.

“At the same time, artisan breads with new flavours and contemporary twists on traditional recipes are enjoying a renaissance. The growing trend for ‘seasonal bakery’ is helping to drive visits and revenue in the all-important final ‘golden’ quarter of the year.”

Linden also noted the rise in seasonal items catering to specific dietary needs, such as the vegan roast dinner panini and vegan mince pies.

Vegan-friendly meals are one of the driving trends in the grab-and-go market, with a number of players rolling out limited-edition sandwiches and treats alongside turkey-laden sandwiches.