The rapid success of Farmer’s Markets in North America suggests there is a growing appetite for good artisan foods. Such markets have played a key role in establishing Soul Bakery as one of Seattle’s new breed of small craft bakeries. Traditional operations here were hit by the arrival of the supermarket chains, but there are signs that the sector is undergoing a renaissance. Consumers are driving demand for quality food products, including bread. Soul Bakery is the brainchild of two couples: David and Lorna Kerry and William and Fiona Clarkson. Of the four, David Kerry has the bakery background. His family started baking bread in Tipperary, Ireland at the turn of the last century and, having graduated in bakery and food technology, he spent three years with the family business before moving to Australia. During his 12 years there, he worked in the hotel and baking industries before moving to product development and food service positions with Unilever and BP. Kerry had a good reason to relocate to Australia. His wife, Lorna, who has a background in marketing, is Australian, as are the Clarksons. Before Soul Bakery, William Clarkson worked in property and project management with his family’s pharmacy chain, while his wife had her own jewellery business in Brisbane. Lorna and Fiona have been best friends since childhood. In 1998, the Kerrys moved to Washington State, USA and set up the Gourmet Bakery in Shoreline, 10 miles north of Seattle. They later opened outlets in Edmonds and Lynnwood. They were in regular contact with the Clarksons and the couples decided to set up a business together. With Kerry’s background, a bakery-related enterprise was seen as a good option. “We identified our potential niche as speciality breads and set ourselves the goal of developing a range of premium, healthy and flavoursome baked products,” said Kerry. “By this, we mean products that are in tune with current wellness thinking. For example, we have products that...
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