Rising energy costs coupled with record inflation have wreaked havoc on bakeries across the country, according to Dutch bakery industry lobbyists. “I hear many entrepreneurs say that if this holds out for much longer, they will have to close up shop,” said Marie-Hélène Zengerink, from the Dutch Association of Bakers and Pastry Chefs. Reuters.
Zengerink’s association, along with the Dutch Bakers Association and other industry groups, have urged the Dutch government to adopt policies that will help reduce energy costs for businesses. Proposed policies include a cap on gas prices and a temporary waiver of energy taxes.
According to Zengerink, some of the bakeries his association represents have seen their monthly energy costs increase tenfold in the last year, from 3,000 euros per month to 30,000 euros. Due to the cost and availability of equipment, switching from gas ovens to electric ovens is not a viable option in the short term for small businesses or industrial bakeries which account for 85% of bread production in the Netherlands. Down.
In 2021 alone, the Dutch consumed almost 800 million kilos of bread (via Statistical). But as Dutch bakers continue to grapple with rising costs, without government intervention, family bakeries and industrial bread behemoths risk shutting down their ovens for good.