KANSAS CITY — With inflation at 40-year highs, consumers are feeling the pinch. IRI reports that 8 in 10 consumers noticed food and beverage price increases over the past year with a vast majority changing their behavior as a result, noted Sally Lyons Wyatt, executive vice president and practice leader and client insights, IRI.

“It is the younger generation that isn’t into their earning power years that is suffering the most and say that they’re changing their ways a bit more than others,” she said.

For instance, while 33% of consumers overall told IRI that they are reducing impulse purchasing, that number was 45% for older millennials. And while one in five consumers said they are changing where they shop to get better prices, that number jumped to one in three for younger millennials and Generation Z. Still, there are a bevy of opportunities for bakeries as people gather again.

Whitney Atkins, global marketing vice president and director at International Dairy Deli Bakery Association, suggested that in-store bakeries focus on serving customers who will be celebrating with friends and family for a variety of spring celebrations.

“Rebounding from the last two years are special occasions, family gatherings and celebrations,” Ms. Atkins told Michelle Smith, Baking & Snack features editor, for her April trends report. “Spring events and holidays will lead us right into graduation season, which is likely to see phenomenal growth as group sizes grow.”

Hope springs eternal, even in the face of rising inflation and supply chain problems. Bakeries just need to know where to find it.