French cookie monsters feed Covid-19 cravings, as global supply hits crunch time

·2-min read

A leading global producer of American-style cookies warned this week of a shortage in the sweet, doughy biscuit, raising fears that a shortage could spread to France where cookie consumption has exploded as stay-at-home Covid-19 restrictions catapult the French to the top of a worldwide cookie craze.

Cookie eating, popularised in North America, has risen more than 31% this year across the world, with people seeking comfort food during the coronavirus pandemic, according to statistics from a data analytics firm.

And France tops the chart for the global increase in consumption, hitting a 61% hike in cookie eating, beating the UK and Japan into second and third place respectively, data from Top Agency said.

However, supply chain constraints and labour shortages forced multinational Campbell Soup Company to issue a sober warning earlier this month, describing hits to production at its Pepperidge Farm division which produces the popular farmhouse and chunk cookies.

“We’ve prioritised increasing supply and are already leveraging capacity opportunities across the network to meet increases in demand and maximize availability,” said Campbell’s CEO Mark Clouse, Bloomberg reported.

Le French touch cookies

French cookie companies have faced challenges posed by Covid-19 by realigning their cookie businesses to meet the changing habits of French consumers.

Kookies, a line of cookies made in Clermont-Ferrand in central France, recently set up an online ordering service, delivering French-made cookies across the country in 48 hours, reported regional newspaper La Montagne.

Kassandra Emard, a 29-year-old patisserie chef, set up Kookies in late 2019, inspired by several trips to the US and the ubiquitous American cookie.

Emard has seen demand for the made-in-Clermont-Ferrand cookies surge from all corners of food-loving France with interest from Corsica and Saint-Tropez.

She spent some six months getting an online store up and running, perfecting the packaging and delivery services.

The Incontournable [unmissable] is Kookies’ best seller and the business is selling up to 1,000 cookies a day, showing that when shortages in the US hit global supplies, that’s just the way the cookie crumbles for French cookie lovers!