Private-label bakery products lost ground against branded rivals in both value and volume terms last year, according to new research from the Private Label Manufacturers’ Association in conjunction with research firm AC Nielsen.

Consumers stuck by branded bakery products last year, despite the onset of the recession, with private-label’s volume share of the bakery market falling 0.5% to 53.5%, compared to the previous year, while value share was down 0.2% to 49.3%.

Private-label categories that did particularly badly included large, whole packaged cakes, which saw volume and value share fall by 5.5% and 3.9% respectively, while private-label buns, scones and teacakes declined by 4% (volume) and 2.5% (value).

However, in sliced bread private-label grew its market share slightly, with volumes edging ahead by 1.2% to account for 35.5% of the market, while value share grew 1.5% to take 27.1%.

Jean-Jacques Vandenheede, retail insights director Europe at AC Nielsen, said that private-label decline could be explained by branded manufacturers introducing new packaging, flavours and products. Last year, for example, Premier Foods brought its Mr Kipling brand to the celebration cakes market with the launch of the Big French Fancy - a giant version of its popular French Fancy line. The launch was supported by a £4.4m spend across the entire Mr Kipling brand.