St Pierre Bakery Addresses a Hole in the Market With New Brioche Bagel

America’s favorite brioche brand is set to launch a brand-new product to market, allowing retailers to capitalize on the growth of two emerging categories. The bagel category is worth $1.5bn across America, whilst brioche as a category is growing at 33 per cent, totalling $327 million to August ‘21.

The St Pierre Brioche Bagels, which have already secured distribution through Meijer, bring together Parisian flair and a New York classic, offering retailers something truly unique to drive innovation into the bakery category. Available from September, the Brioche Bagel combines soft, lightly sweet, golden brioche with the traditional bagel.

Ideal for breakfast, brunch and lunch, the versatility of the new bagel product gives retailers broad scope to promote for every meal occasion. As the first brioche bagel to market, it also offers inspiration to shoppers looking for new and exciting eating occasions in the bakery aisle.

Paul Baker, founder of St Pierre Bakery, explains “We’ve spent the past seven years educating shoppers on how to use brioche and working with retailers to encourage shoppers to try something new. As a result, more than a third of American shoppers are now choosing brioche every time they shop. St Pierre products are designed to ‘elevate the everyday’; in upgrading a bakery staple like the bagel, we are allowing consumers to do just that.

“Any product we launch under the St Pierre brand is borne of consumer insight and retailer demand. Our research shows that consumers are willing not only to try more new products, but also to spend more in doing so. With a third already buying brioche and shoppers driving $1.5bn in bagel sales every year, it makes sense for us, as category leader, to offer a brioche bagel and capitalize on the growth of both sectors.”

Pre-pandemic, the total bagels market was worth $1.03bn and at the end of 2019 was in value growth of 2.3 per cent year on year. However, after more than 12 months of working from home and COVID-19 restrictions, the once-humble midweek breakfast and lunchtime meal occasions have grown substantially – and with them, the popularity of bagels.

What’s more, growth in the bagel sector is being driven by unflavored or plain bagels, which at the end of 2019 already made up the bulk of the market (40 per cent share) and were growing ahead of the sector at more than 5 per cent.

Baker continues “The new St Pierre product draws on our expertise in the category and knowledge of quality brioche products. Our bagels deliver all the attributes of brioche that American consumers know and love, but in a new format to inspire new eating occasions driven by the shift in consumer habits.”

Market research results from St Pierre Bakery revealed that four out of five existing brioche buyers would purchase Brioche Bagels and 91 per cent would eat them for breakfast.

However, according to a nationwide online survey conducted by The Harris Poll and commissioned by General Mills Foodservice in 2021, consumers are eating more breakfast foods than normal during the COVID-19 pandemic and not just in the morning hours.

Nearly a quarter of Americans report eating more breakfast foods (24 percent) and four in five Americans (79 percent) say they have eaten breakfast foods outside of the traditional breakfast meal in the past year.

Baker adds, “The pandemic has altered consumer behaviours when it comes to meal times and home-cooking. Retailers now have a unique opportunity to engage their customers with products that cater to these emerging trends.

“As a brand, the launch of St Pierre Brioche Bagels will also allow us to secure further space in the in-store bakery. In Meijer, the Brioche Bagels will be distributed through our innovative Eiffel Tower displays giving us an even greater brand presence in the in-store bakery area where traditionally, brands aren’t able to activate”.

St Pierre Brioche Bagels will be available as a four-pack through Meijer stores from October 2021.

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