Powdered ingredients like flour and yeast are in high demand due to the quarantine baking hobby which many have taken up which is self-isolation. Additionally, there is a yeast shortage, amongst other ingredients, in grocery stores because of the demand.
Saco Foods, the company behind Mix’n Drink powdered non-fat milk and powdered buttermilk, has seen an increase in demand for their products since the start of staying at home practices, due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
“The legacy of Saco has been to produce goods that bring families together,” says Tom Walzer, CEO of Saco Foods. “Those moments are even more valuable in this time of uncertainty and I am honored that we are able to give families a reliable source of comfort and nutrition.”
For many, the newfound time on people’s hands and the ability to bake in their homes has made them feel productive and provides a distraction from news about the spread of the virus. Furthermore, the hashtag #QuarantineBaking is trending on various social media platforms, where people are sharing their home-baked creations.
Saco Foods, for example, has experienced five times the normal volume of sales for their dry buttermilk, baking cocoa, and their most popular product, Mix’n Drink, a powdered milk.
Other than yeast, consumers are shopping for items such as flour, sugar and chocolate chips keeping them scarce in grocery stores. According to The Globe and Mail, companies such as Tony and Penny Marshall of Highwood Crossing in High River, Alta., and Flourist are seeing a spike in consumer demand that is placing pressures on their distribution.
“People are hoarding flour because they think we’re going to run out, but we have no evidence of that…if there was even a hint of a shortage for Canadian consumers, we’d divert supplies to the Canadian market. The reality is we produce so much wheat, there would have to be a catastrophe for us to not have enough to supply the mills,” said Tom Steve, general manager of the Alberta Wheat and Barley Commissions.
The panic to buy more than needed has caused shortages across the nation. The rise of panic has increased the number of grocery stores having shortages of necessary items which has caused various inconveniences to many. However, manufacturers have continued to produce their goods with higher food safety standards to prevent the spread of disease to the public and restock shelves as required.