Baking & Snack - August 2018 - 52

"The way a cake looks is just as
important as the product itself."
Jennifer LaPaugh, Dawn Foods

Although cake will often
scoff in the face of
health-and-wellness in
the name of decadence,
products like vegan
cheesecake offer a
decadent compromise.
Eli's Cheesecake Co.

sizes that free the in-store bakery to mix-and-match and create memorable cake options. "We partnered with one customer who wanted to show off a variety of cake sizes," Ms.
LaPaugh said. "We not only provided a number of highquality ready-to-serve dessert cakes, but the customer was
also able to offer the same cake in half-sizes for smaller occasions and mix it up for families that want different options in
the same cake. Customization has been really important, and
it gave that customer flexibility."
Retail-ready cakes also fit what Dawn calls the "25/7"
trend. American consumers are constantly chasing that
magical extra hour in the day. According to Ms. LaPaugh,
it's also about stealing some time for oneself for a moment of
personal luxury so decadent, it feels like a newfound wrinkle in time. This is a product that can easily be sliced up for
single-serve, grab-and-go options, but cake's versatility really
shines through when it also becomes a component in upscale portable desserts as well.
"When you think about versatility, one thing we're seeing
is that the 'celebration occasion' is expanding to leverage dessert cakes more," said Becky Loveland, vice-president, marketing and R&D, North America, Dawn Foods. "Consumers
want something a little bit more chic for certain occasions."
To meet the need for versatility, Dawn maintains high quality in its finished cake products so they can meet any number of trends, occasions and sophistication.

Cakes gone viral
People eat with their eyes, and social media outlets such as
Instagram are feeding that frenzy more than ever. Today's
consumers want cakes that not only emulate the masterpieces they once saw on television but that also are "Instaworthy" to snap a photo for social media.
Once upon a time, the concept of sharing was about
desserts that could be portioned out for groups to enjoy
together. But more recently, "sharing" refers to consumers
posting images of food that's meant for one ... and intended
to create a sense of "FOMO," or fear of missing out, among
their social network connections.
Dawn calls this the "#FoodieExpressions" trend. "This is
all about the experience and being able to share what we're
doing," Ms. LaPaugh said. "You see more and more attention-grabbing cakes around social media, and they all have
these Insta-worthy creations."
Mr. Docherty noted that with offerings that are worth
social shares, the in-store bakery becomes an attraction

52 Baking & Snack August 2018 /

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