LEARNINGS FROM PASTRY CONNECTION: CONFECTIONERY IN THE US WITH GONZO JIMÉNEZ AND JORGE KAUAM
The chocolate and pastry industries are very different in every market at a global level. It is a complex niche that depends on specific resources in order to develop a good product. For example, the industry in the United States has more established operations, to facilitate and support the development of a chef on this field. On this context, the chefs Gonzo Jiménez and Jorge Kauam shared with us some of the advantages and differences between confectionery and pastry in the United States and Latin America.
On the first place, Jorge Kauam feels that there is a lot of freedom of expression in the American market. He also mentions that his clients differ a lot from one side of the country to the other. For example, on the West Coast, the consumption is much more oriented towards healthy and conscious products, whereas his clients from the East Coast are more influences by trend from NY, which make them prefer sweeter and bigger portions. Gonzalo, on his side, mentions that holidays influence their creativity on a monthly basis, allowing them to explore different colors and forms.
Moreover, the chefs mention that the American market is wide enough and has a lot of different types of consumers. Because of this, the important thing as a confectionery maker is to define which is your objective public from the beginning, in this way you’ll define better your logistics and your marketing strategy. Jorge also mentions that he adapted himself to the demands of the Belgium market, since he noticed it had a lot of influence on the United States; on this way his consumers started to grow. On the other side, Gonzalo started to build up his connections through his experience in hotels in Latin America, thanks to which he managed to develop a web of people who wanted to work with him when he decided to open his business in the United States.
In comparison to Latin America, the advantage is that the confectionery industry is much more developed in the United States and it offers the necessary tools to start a business. There are a variety of enterprises who offer delivery services, kitchen incubators that are totally equipped in order to rent everything that you need, and even loans for people who start with no capital. These options allow you to grow if you are willing to fight.
Gabriela López-Barry, Brand Manager for República del Cacao in the US
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