Cookie and Cracker Manufacturers

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Industry Structure, How Firms Opertate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Quarterly Insight, Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 316 cookie and cracker manufacturers in the US produce crackers and biscuits, cookies, wafers, and ice cream cones. The industry is comprised of independent manufacturers that produce and sell their own brands, and contract manufacturers that produce and package products for customers under the customer’s brand(s).

Changing Consumer Diets

Demand for cookies and crackers can change with consumer diets and fads.

Food Safety Regulations

Like other food production operations, cookie and cracker manufacturers are subject to regulations regarding food handling, storage, contamination, allergens and package labeling.

Industry size & Structure

A typical cookie and cracker manufacturer operates out of a single location, employs fewer than 20 workers, and generates about $34 million annually.

    • The cookie and cracker manufacturing industry consists of about 316 companies which employ about 30,300 workers and generate about $11 billion annually.
    • About 87% of firms have just one production facility. About 46 firms are large, employing 100 or more workers each.
    • The industry is highly concentrated with the 8 largest firms representing 69% of revenue.
    • Customer industries include food distributors, grocery stores, mass merchandisers, drug and discount stores, restaurants, caterers and snack shops.
    • Large companies include Mondelez International (Oreo, Ritz, Nabisco), Kellogg’s (Town House), Campbell’s (Pepperidge Farms, Snyder’s Lance, Archway) and Nestle (Toll House). Some large manufacturers are highly diversified and produce a wide variety of foods and beverages in addition to cookies and crackers.
    • Contract manufacturers include Hearthside Foods, Western Baking Corporation, Oakhouse Bakery, and Richmond Baking.
                                    Industry Forecast
                                    Cookie and Cracker Manufacturers Industry Growth
                                    Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                                    Coronavirus Update

                                    Jun 14, 2022 - Manufacturing Job Growth Slows in May
                                    • Employment in manufacturing continued to trend upward in May, with the sector adding 18,000 jobs, according to the Labor Department. However, job growth slowed considerably from April when the manufacturing sector added 61,000 new jobs. Moreover, manufacturing employment remains 17,000 jobs below the pre-pandemic February 20202 level. Retail trade employment declined by 61,000 in May with food stores shedding 8,000 jobs. The USDA’s May Food Outlook Report raised its food inflation forecast for grocery store prices to 7% to 8% versus, versus April’s outlook of a rise of 5% to 6%, the highest grocery store price rise in more than 20 years when when food prices rose 8.1% in 1980 and 7.2% in 1981.
                                    • US retail sales of plant-based foods grew 6.2% in 2021 over a record year of growth in 2020, bringing the total plant-based market value to an all-time high of $7.4 billion, new data shows. Overall, plant-based food retail sales grew at three times the rate of total food retail sales, with most plant-based categories outpacing their conventional counterparts, according to the Plant Based Food Association (PBFA), Good Food Institute (GFI), and retail data company SPINS. Beyond plant-based alternatives to meat and dairy foods, plant-based protein alternatives present an opportunity for the cookie and cracker market, as more consumers adopt vegan diets for health and environmental reasons.
                                    • Russia’s war in Ukraine has impacted the global supply of key macro ingredients like wheat used in cookie and cracker manufacturing. With Russia and Ukraine making up about a third of the global wheat supply, the invasion has pushed wheat prices to record highs, with little relief in sight, TraceGrain’s Gary Iles told Snack Food & Wholesale Bakery in May. “The most optimistic estimates suggest we’ll be looking at another six to 12 months of supply chain shortages. But it could easily take twice that long, especially if manufacturers fail to take a more proactive approach to diversify their pool of suppliers,” Iles said. Chicago wheat futures were trading around the $11.1 per bushel level in May, not far off a 14-year high of $12.5 hit in March as poor weather conditions and export restrictions heightened supply concerns.
                                    • The prices paid by consumers for cookies increased 12.6% year over year in May 2022, while cracker and bread prices jumped 14.6%. Cookie and cracker manufacturers’ prices were flat in May, indicating that manufacturers may have been able to pass at least some of their higher input costs through the supply chain.
                                    • Consumers are concerned more about sugar intact than salt, according to a survey in March 2022. Sugar intake rated in the top three concerns while sodium ranked sixth. However, 83% prioritized taste over everything else when choosing what to eat.
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