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Why Good Cakes are not Cheap and Cheap Cakes are not Good!

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

The company I work for is having an employee luncheon today and bought this cake from a local supermarket......The boss was afraid to let me see it!

Needless to say, they have commissioned me to make the cakes for their 40th Anniversary fundraiser next month and are steering away from anymore "store cakes"

This was "supposed" to be edible sugar transfer.....

 

 

 

Supermarket cake.jpeg 1,114k .jpeg file
post #2 of 16
You get what you pay for.
post #3 of 16

That's a pretty bad cake wreck, but plenty of people are making good cakes for cheap.

post #4 of 16

Wow...how...uh...nice.......icon_confused.gif

post #5 of 16

Instore bakeries know their target market (not us!) and have a huge competitive advantage (big parking lots). 

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post #6 of 16

Ask them if they are having budgeting issues icon_biggrin.gif

post #7 of 16
There is a nice big space underneath- I'd suggest giving the employees piping bags and letting them write their ideas for what they are dedicated to. Since its left so ambiguous... icon_wink.gif
I homeschool because I don't believe in the mass production of human beings.
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I homeschool because I don't believe in the mass production of human beings.
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post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 

I think the "dedicated to" piece was supposed to go above the company name and logo:)

post #9 of 16

We would NEVER let that cake leave our bakery.  NEVER, EVER, in a million years.  My manager would be up your a** in a nanosecond upon noticing the edible image not turning out correctly, as all bakery managers SHOULD be.  She'd make you do it over until it came out to the correct dimensions (hello, it's a computer, there's a screen there plainly showing you HOW to enlarge/shrink!)

 

I'm wondering if they did it on purpose on the fact that 1) everyone would notice so that 2) it'd be submitted to Cake Wrecks (really, I'm of the opinion that most of the cakes posted over there are done as such on purpose because...WHO WOULD SERIOUSLY DO SOMETHING LIKE THAT, SUPERMARKET OR NOT???)

 

I'm sorry, but it's crap like this that gives us supermarket people a bad name.

 

Not every supermarket bakery is like this.

 

No way.

post #10 of 16
That's terrible. I'm sure there are some talented people out in supermarketland, who can make a nice cake. My mother worked in a grocery store bakery & did a very nice, neat job. Her head baker was awesome to watch pump out beautiful cakes and pastries.
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by IAmPamCakes View Post

That's terrible. I'm sure there are some talented people out in supermarketland, who can make a nice cake. My mother worked in a grocery store bakery & did a very nice, neat job. Her head baker was awesome to watch pump out beautiful cakes and pastries.

 

There still are, but sadly they're far and few between nowadays, mostly due to retirement, layoff, or permanent disability.

 

Once in awhile you'll fall upon a raw beginner or someone with a little experience who has the drive and energy to be really great at baking, decorating or both.  If you find one, you hang onto them for dear life -- for obvious reasons.  You might have to start at minimum wage or a little above, but if you prove yourself, any decent supermarket should, within its pay scale, raise your pay accordingly (I wanted to say "will" because that's been my experience, but I'm pretty sure that's not typical).

 

It's a very tough job, and it's been discussed here on CC before.  You definitely need a production mentality AND artistic flair to succeed or else nobody will buy, or will complain about, anything you create. I've seen it happen.

 

Supermarket bakeries are considered loss leaders.  They're located near the front of any store to entice entering customers.  If you have a great bakery, customers are not only more apt to buy product from you, but they are also more apt to buy more product in other departments too.

post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by embersmom View Post

 

Supermarket bakeries are considered loss leaders.  They're located near the front of any store to entice entering customers.  If you have a great bakery, customers are not only more apt to buy product from you, but they are also more apt to buy more product in other departments too.

I'm so glad to hear someone else say that. Every time I mention it, I get the feeling no one believes me. I worked briefly as  grocery store cake decorator and was told that the cake decorating part operated at  loss. But I usually include something about how grocery stores actively endeavored to put bakeries and florists out of business and I guess I sound like a conspiracy theorist or something.  Even I am too young to remember the corner bakery, butcher and flower stand, but that's how it was. .

post #13 of 16

Quote:

Originally Posted by howsweet View Post

I'm so glad to hear someone else say that. Every time I mention it, I get the feeling no one believes me. I worked briefly as  grocery store cake decorator and was told that the cake decorating part operated at  loss. But I usually include something about how grocery stores actively endeavored to put bakeries and florists out of business and I guess I sound like a conspiracy theorist or something.  Even I am too young to remember the corner bakery, butcher and flower stand, but that's how it was. .

howsweet:  I believe you about the grocery stores.

(ps: when I grew up in southern California, not far from Disneyland, we had a corner egg farm, a corner dairy with lots of cows, & acres of citrus & almond groves all around the neighborhood.)

~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman
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~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman
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post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by howsweet View Post

I'm so glad to hear someone else say that. Every time I mention it, I get the feeling no one believes me. I worked briefly as  grocery store cake decorator and was told that the cake decorating part operated at  loss. But I usually include something about how grocery stores actively endeavored to put bakeries and florists out of business and I guess I sound like a conspiracy theorist or something.  Even I am too young to remember the corner bakery, butcher and flower stand, but that's how it was. .

 

Somebody had to say it icon_wink.gif

 

Another thing:  One of the reasons why some chains shrink down their bakeries is because they are loss leaders, and they're using more profitable departments (like produce, for example) as the entice-to-come-in factor.  Or...if a bakery doesn't have the help or can't hold onto the help, a chain might decrease its area on the "you're not making much; therefore, you're not selling much, so why should you have all this floor space when it can be better utilized by another department?" theory.

 

We had two corner bakeries (one did mostly bread; the other, pastries), a honest-to-goodness corner grocery where you had to ask the man behind the counter to get what you wanted, a florist, and a fishmonger in my childhood neighborhood. The florist is the only one still there.

post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by MBalaska View Post

Quote:

howsweet:  I believe you about the grocery stores.

(ps: when I grew up in southern California, not far from Disneyland, we had a corner egg farm, a corner dairy with lots of cows, & acres of citrus & almond groves all around the neighborhood.)


We still have a couple of honest-to-goodness dairies with honest-to-goodness cows in my general area!  Down by my in-laws there are still a couple of operating "gentleman" farms which sell eggs and veggies,

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