High-Flying Gourmet Cupcakes: Bust Period Boom?

Saturday, December 5, 2009
Posted in category Economics

In another round of  “Someone Needs to Get the Depression Memo” news, it’s cupcakes this time around. Apparently, cupcakeries have been a boom period trend. The New York Times chimes in on the mania.

There is no Cupcake Manufacturers Association keeping count, but anecdotal evidence indicates that stand-alone cupcake shops have been spreading not just in the acknowledged cupcake meccas of New York and Los Angeles but also in Boston, Denver, Austin, Tex., and lots of smaller places. Nationwide, cupcake sales, according to the market research firm, Mintel, are projected to rise another 20 percent over the next five years at a time when other baked goods are expected to grow in the single digits.

After reading the following excerpt, I smell the stench of someone who hasn’t read the news in two years and who still thinks that Lehman Brothers and General Motors are on top of the world.

“Cupcake stores are taking the place of ice cream stores,” said Adam Borden, whose Baltimore-based venture capital firm, Bradmer Foods, specializes in food-focused enterprises. “Cupcakes aren’t seasonal like ice cream, and they appeal to people who want the authentic experience. They have an allure based on nostalgia.”

I admit to living in a part of America where after-work $1 draft beers are still the cat’s ass, not $20 cupcakes with chocolate sprinkles from France dipped in diamond dust. The Washington Post calls Sprinkles Cupcakes of Beverly Hills “the progenitor of the haute cupcake craze.” One lady who opened a snooty cupcake shop in Denver says “I still live in my brother’s basement.” Does that need further comment?

Thanks to Skip Oliva, my cupcake correspondent in Washington, for the story tip.

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5 Responses to High-Flying Gourmet Cupcakes: Bust Period Boom?

  1. Brian Heyer says:

    December 5th, 2009 at 5:37 pm

    “Authentic cupcake experience”…. BWAAAAAA HAHA HA HA Ha Ha ha ha.

    Sad.

  2. Robin says:

    December 5th, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    $3.00 for a single cupcake? You can buy at least several donuts, muffins, or cinnamon rolls for the same price. This industry will be extinct in no time.

  3. Michael says:

    December 5th, 2009 at 9:11 pm

    Huh. There must be something about economic depressions that gets people to eat crap. McDonald’s posted great FY08 results too. Maybe it’s a way for folks to escape reality of economic destitution (OK, we’re not there YET).

  4. Shannon says:

    December 6th, 2009 at 10:55 pm

    “Cupcakes are $3 each and 1 free with every dozen.” For that price, I had better get a massage too.

  5. Cupcakes 6 Feet Under? Thank Goodness! | The Penn Ave Post says:

    April 24th, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    [...] the whole cupcake craze that has swept America in recent years. My earliest cupcake-bashing post goes back to 2009. Finally, folks are declaring that the cupcake craze was indeed a bubble and it was indeed [...]

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