Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 31

SPECIAL REPORT
Industry Confidence Survey

Despite a relatively
optimistic outlook,
bakers still have a
lot to navigate in
the year ahead.
by Joanie Spencer

EpicStockMedia - stock.adobe.com

U

Uncertainty. Merriam-Webster may disagree, but for
the commercial baking industry, it was - certainly -
the word of the year in 2019. Thanks in part to the onagain-off-again trade war with China and improved US
employment rates drying up the candidate pool, it's hard
for wholesale bakers to remain fully optimistic when
confidence can change at the speed of a Twitter feed.
Baking & Snack's 2020 Baking Industry Confidence
Survey - a triennial study conducted by Kansas City,
MO-based Cypress Research - hinted that such uncertainty is causing a bit of industry fatigue. Last year's
Equipment Trends Survey - one of Baking & Snack's
capital-related survey series on a three-year cycle - noted a lot of optimism and plans for capital investments,
but the ups and downs of 2019 seem to have left businesses worn out. While the outlook is generally optimistic and gross profit margins are on the positive side of
the ledger, respondents to this year's survey indicated
they're expecting more of a status quo approach to investing in coming year.
"The sentiment seems to be uncertainty today and
more of that in 2020," said Marjorie Hellmer, Cypress
Research president. And while the same isn't great,
things aren't bad, either. Finances are in good shape,
the job market is healthy, and economists predict a
recession-free 2020.

However, broader manufacturing looks slightly
different, according to the National Association of
Manufacturers (NAM) Q4 survey, which was released
in December. Despite strong consumer spending and
labor market growth, the NAM survey revealed weakened manufacturing activity and business confidence,
with 67.6% of respondents reporting a positive outlook,
which was steady from the previous quarter but a significant drop from 89.5% in the Q1 report, which published in March.
Commercial baking saw a similar story last year. The
2019 Equipment Trends Survey revealed an overall positive outlook and bakers' plans to invest in equipment
that would support the longevity of their business. But
as the year - and the trade war - wore on, attitudes
started to shift. As we enter a new year with trade unrest
at bay for now, Baking & Snack reveals how baking companies are holding steady amid uncertain waters.

Proceed with caution
In general, bakers closed out 2019 with a positive economic outlook. In the survey, 86% of participants said
they feel the American economy is growing. However,
they're viewing the year ahead through a more critical
lens; that number dropped to 77% when asked about optimism for the US economy in 2020.

www.bakingbusiness.com / February 2020 Baking & Snack 31


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Baking & Snack - February 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Baking & Snack - February 2020

Baking & Snack - February 2020
Contents
Editorial - What can bread learn from the little black dress?
Newsfront
People/In Brief
2020 Baking Hall of Fame - The history makers
2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The teacher
2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The engineer
2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The architect
2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The helper
Industry Confi dence Survey - Weathering the storm
Kwik Trip - Land of opportunity
Donuts - A hole in one
Health and wellness - Impacting consumer health
Protein - Blend for balance
Probiotics - Good for the gut
Snack processing - Story of the decade
Pan glazing - Life in the fast lane
Depositing - Bull's-eye
Production management - ERP software 101
Trays & baskets - Stacked for food safety
Meeting preview: ABA - A gold mine of information
Events
Innovations - Contents
Featured innovation center
Ingredients & formulating
Equipment & packaging
Patents
New on the shelf
Marketplace
Ad index
New product spotlight
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Baking & Snack - February 2020
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Baking & Snack - February 2020
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 2
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 3
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 4
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 5
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 6
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Contents
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 8
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 9
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Editorial - What can bread learn from the little black dress?
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 11
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 12
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 13
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Newsfront
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 15
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - People/In Brief
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 17
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 18
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 19
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 20
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 2020 Baking Hall of Fame - The history makers
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The teacher
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 23
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The engineer
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 25
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 26
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The architect
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 28
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 2020 BAKING HALL OF FAME - The helper
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 30
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Industry Confi dence Survey - Weathering the storm
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 32
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 33
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 34
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 35
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 36
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 37
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Kwik Trip - Land of opportunity
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 39
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 41
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 40
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 42
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 43
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Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 50
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 51
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 52
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 53
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Donuts - A hole in one
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 55
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 56
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 57
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 58
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 59
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 60
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 61
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 62
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 63
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 64
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Health and wellness - Impacting consumer health
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 66
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 67
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 68
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 69
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 70
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Protein - Blend for balance
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 72
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 73
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 74
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 75
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 76
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 77
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 78
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 79
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 80
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Probiotics - Good for the gut
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 82
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 83
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 84
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 85
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 86
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 87
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 88
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Snack processing - Story of the decade
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 90
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 91
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 92
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 93
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 94
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 95
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 96
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 97
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 98
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Pan glazing - Life in the fast lane
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 100
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 101
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 102
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 103
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 104
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 105
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 106
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Depositing - Bull's-eye
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 108
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 109
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 110
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 111
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 112
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 113
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 114
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Production management - ERP software 101
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 116
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 117
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 118
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 119
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 120
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 121
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 122
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Trays & baskets - Stacked for food safety
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 124
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 125
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 126
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 127
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 128
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Meeting preview: ABA - A gold mine of information
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Events
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 131
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 132
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Innovations - Contents
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Featured innovation center
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 135
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 136
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Ingredients & formulating
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 138
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 139
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Equipment & packaging
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 141
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 142
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 143
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 144
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 145
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 146
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 147
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Patents
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 149
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - New on the shelf
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 151
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Marketplace
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 153
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 154
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Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 157
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 158
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 159
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 160
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - Ad index
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - New product spotlight
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 163
Baking & Snack - February 2020 - 164
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