Have your cake and eat it, too – new bakery products introduced in 1991

Lynn Dornblaser

Dessert usually is the part of the meal health-conscious consumers skip to cut back on calories and fat. In 1991 bakery producers tried to offer consumers another alternative: dessert items that provide a self-indulgent treat with controlled amounts of fat and calories.

This effort produced a record number of new products in this category, according to New Product News. Bakery products in 1991 reached 1,631, a 32% increase over 1990’s 1,239 new bakery products.


The Entenmann’s line, from General Foods USA, White Plains, N.Y., started the trend in 1989 with its landmark line of fat-free cakes and dessert items.

In 1991, Entenmann’s expanded its fat-free line further with 16 new varieties, including cinnamon apple raisin muffins, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, and chocolate crunch cake.

For the first time, Stouffer Foods, Solon, Ohio, offered desserts in its Lean Cuisine line. The five 94%-fat-free products include-varieties such as chocolate cream cheese brownie and carrot cake.

Even Pepperidge Farm, Norwalk, Conn., known for its indulgent, upscale cookies, offered a Wholesome Choice. The varieties in this line – oatmeal raisin, cranberry honey, walnut date, and raspberry tart – mimic some in the company’s upscale line, but have fewer calories and no cholesterol.


Bread bakers in 1991 discovered that children should eat more high-fiber, vitamin-fortified breads and, thus, offered several breads marketed specifically to them. This is the first time so many breads have had the word “kid” in them.

The first bread to bear a “kid” name was Iron Kids bread, from Campbell, Taggart, Dallas. Iron Kids bread, introduced in 1989 in limited test markets, is a white bread enriched to have the same amount of fiber as some whole wheat breads. As the bread rolled out to additional markets, the Food and Drug Administration took notice of-and exception to – the name of the bread and the company’s marketing approach.

The name issue was resolved in early 1992. Campbell Taggart and FDA reached a compromise, whereby Campbell Taggart will print a disclaimer on the package, directly under the IronKids logo. The disclaimer will make it clear that the name “refers only to a children’s fitness program, and has no reference to either extra iron in this bread or to the bread resulting in superior strength or performance.”

Other bakers have debuted breads with surprisingly similar names. All are white breads with added fiber


Healthy eating wasn’t the only trend spotted in the bakery category in 1991. Products that offered a little bit of fun, or made consumers smile, also made a strong showing.

Perhaps one of the more clever fun products came from Continental Baking. Its Hostess Grizzly Chomps snack cakes each have a “bite” taken out of them. Package graphics include a grizzly’cartoon character, telling kids, “start’em, you finish |em.” The cakes also happen to be 97% fat free.

To allow kids to participate, even with store-bought cookies, Nabisco offered Made |em Myself cookies for sale just around Christmas. Each package contained 40 vanilla cookies with two tubes of frosting (red and green).


The extension of the company’s Oreo line didn’t end there in 1991. It also debuted Mini Oreos, about the size of a quarter. This new player in the “mini” market joined many others introduced in 1991.

Kellogg, Battle Creek, Mich., extended its Eggo frozen waffle line with Eggo Mini Waffles. These round waffles are joined in groups of four.

Some of the major players that “mini-mized” their brands were Continental Baking, with CinnaMinis bite-size cinnamon rolls; and General Foods USA, with Entenmann’s Mini Pecan Pies.


A study by The NPD Group, Port Washington, N.Y., on national eating trends indicates that consumers are snacking more and are less concerned about calorie-watching. This study, contrary to others, also suggests that consumers are reading labels less frequently. Some of the products introduced in 1991 lend credence to these survey results; they don’t offer health benefits, but rather focus on their indulgent, upscale image.

Liqueur cakes comprise a product sub-category that made gains in 1991. Not surprisingly, many of these cakes are sold in gourmet stores.

Many of the “indulgence” products introduced in 1991 had a foreign flair, either they were imported or inspired by products with foreign origins. They include Biscotti and tiramisu from Italy, and tortillas from Mexico.


Bread, rolls 237

Cakes 226

Donuts 7

Croissants, bagels, muffins 88

Sweet goods 177

Snack cakes 18

Pies 32

Cookies 574

Crackers 196

Other 76

Total 1,631

COPYRIGHT 1992 Business News Publishing Co.

COPYRIGHT 2004 Gale Group

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