Rich Products has seen cupcake shoppers gravitate towards limited edition and seasonal flavors, said Diana Bernal, associate customer marketing manager for bakery/deli.

Trends aside, cupcake demand has been strong across the board for Rich’s.

“We’ve seen significant growth in cupcakes over the last couple of years,” Bernal said. “Cupcakes are easy to decorate in store, and they help reinforce the in-store made freshness consumers seek in the bakery.”

It takes less time to decorate a cupcake than a traditional cake, so cupcakes are easy to execute in store with limited labor, she added.

And small packs of cupcakes fit well into the portable, on-the-go snacking trend that continues to grow.

“We see growth continuing in this space, and Rich’s is poised to supply the rising demand for cupcakes for years to come. Cupcakes are a great way to drive trial of new flavors that push the boundaries of traditional desserts.”

A cupcake take on charcuterie

One way to drive trial, Bernal said, is to use dessert boards, which take advantage of the charcuterie craze.

Rich’s provides its customers with a comprehensive seasonal program with five ordering windows, including its portfolio of un-iced cakes and whipped icings.

Programs include support tools such as flavor of the month ideas, national holiday calendars and point-of-sale to drive consumers to the in-store bakery.

Rich’s strategy on whipped icings, Bernal said, has evolved to incorporate limited edition flavors each year to bring excitement to the bakery case. And that carries over to other categories, too.

“Our cupcake strategy harnesses this same consumer trend toward seasonal flavors and limited edition offerings,” she said.

What makes cupcakes so approachable, she said, is they’re a size that’s “just-right for me” but also easy to share with others.

In addition to its seasonal program, Rich’s has developed unique cupcakes and other desserts leveraging its licensed brand partners, including Funfetti Bettercreme, which pairs with Rich’s Allen confetti un-iced cupcake.

Funfetti is just one of the new Bettercremes Rich’s has created for cupcake and other applications. Others include S’mores and Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip.

This fall, look for additional, spicy “fall-forward flavors,” Bernal added.

Rich’s is also seeing an increase in demand for nostalgic flavors, Bernal said.

“Nostalgia comforts consumers, and we’ve paired that sentiment with new spirit,” she said.

One example is the new Funfetti Bettercreme, which, paired with Rich’s confetti cupcake, sparks a “familiar happy feeling,” Bernal said.

By popular demand, Rich’s is also bringing back its carrot cupcake, which works well as either an everyday flavor or as a seasonal rotating flavor and pairs perfectly with the company’s portfolio of Cream Cheese Icings.

This article is an excerpt from the May 2024 issue of Supermarket Perimeter. You can read the entire Cupcakes feature and more in the digital edition here.