Supermarket in-store bakery (ISB) company Inbake has been forced to make around 80 people redundant in the past year, after its main customer – the Co-operative Group – decided to bring its ISB operation in-house.

Keith Bentley, co-director of East Sussex-based Inbake, said that eight ISBs and 10 satellite units at Co-op stores across the country had closed down in the past year, with around 80 job losses. Inbake’s last ISB with the Co-op closed in Northern Ireland in November. The company still operates an in-store bakery for Somerfield in Margate.

“It was very disappointing to close these profitable bakeries and lose so many highly skilled bakers that may never return to the trade,” said Bentley.

“Unfortunately for Inbake, the Co-op’s strategy has changed over the years to trading from smaller stores, which they feel would be more suitable for bake-off rather than full scratch bakeries.”

Previously part of Bakery Services, Inbake was acquired with the Don Millers bakery retail and franchise business in a £50,000 management buy-out by Keith Bentley and David Drury in January 2008.