Baking cookbooks and bakeware are still flying off the shelves, as Netflix baking-show viewership continues to rise
Port Washington, N.Y., November 16, 2021 — Even as vaccination rates increase in the U.S., and as people spend more time outside of their homes, interest in baking at home shows no signs of abating. In fact, through October 29, 2021, year-to-date sales of baking cookbooks were 42% higher they were last year, according to The NPD Group. Increasing viewership for “The Great British Baking Show” on Netflix, along with continuing strong sales of bakeware, also supports the view that baking and other activities that experienced rising interest during the early days of the pandemic aren’t necessarily just flashes in the pan.
NPD BookScan, which tracks print book sales in the U.S., reveals that baking books sales have enjoyed a strong year-over-year growth trend, resulting in an 11% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over the past 10 years. It’s also interesting to note that, while demand for bakeware isn’t at the levels seen during the pandemic before vaccinations last year, unit sales in the 12 months ending September 2021 increased by 18% compared to pre-pandemic 2019, according to retail tracking information for the home industry from NPD.
“At the height of the pandemic last year, many people turned to baking as a means to escape and pass the time, a trend that has remained strong well into 2021,” said Kristen McLean, books industry analyst for NPD. “People who were stuck at home last year found baking to be an enjoyable creative pursuit, and many others have discovered baking content on streaming video services and on social media to inspire them, so we expect its popularity will continue.”
Netflix and bake?
The steep rise in baking cookbook and bakeware sales this year is not the only evidence of the growing popularity of baking in the U.S. Viewership of baking shows on Netflix and other streaming services is also increasing. According to NPD’s Subscription Video Track service, “The Great British Baking Show” was the leading reality-family TV series on Netflix year to date through October. Another baking show on Netflix, “Nailed It,” ranked fourth in the reality-family TV category. The projected number of hours Netflix viewers in the U.S. spent watching “The Great British Baking Show” increased by 10%, this year over last, but it grew a whopping 48%, compared to pre-pandemic 2019.
Baking cookbook sales have also directly benefited from “The Great British Baking Show.” Titles authored by one of the show’s judges, Paul Hollywood, and a former judge, Mary Berry, were among the top three best-selling baking cookbooks for the week ending November 6, 2021.
“The rise of the baking craze in the U.S. is a multifaceted story, and one that gets told through several lenses,” McLean said. “Many people took up new creative pursuits during the pandemic, including baking, which is comforting, fun, and achievable for just about everyone. People can watch popular baking shows on Netflix, see inspiring innovative content on social media, and then buy books that help them create their own sweet culinary masterpieces at home. It’s great fun, especially as we head into the holidays.”
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