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Home baking businesses rise as Great British Bake Off returns

3-minute read

Catriona Smith

20 September 2021

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New data from Simply Business reveals the number of home baking businesses has been rising more and more each year, with an increase of 157 per cent in just one year.

As the new series of The Great British Bake Off (GBBO) returns tomorrow night, we delved into our customer data and found out that the number of home baking businesses in the UK has surged between 2019 and 2020.

157% rise in home baking businesses

Analysis of new insurance policies taken out in the last year shows that home baking businesses have been consistently rising year-on-year.

While an average of 9.2 million people tuned in to watch each episode of GBBO last year, the UK saw a 157 per cent rise in the number of home baking businesses.

It seems bakers have been inspired by the show’s long-running success and, spurred on by the pandemic, many more people have been turning their passion for baking into a side hustle.

2019YoY increase2020YoY increase
Home baking policies101037%2598157%

Home baking trends – which region has the sweetest tooth?

The largest rise was in the South West, which saw a 222 per cent increase in home baking insurance policies between 2019 and 2020. This was closely followed by:

  • Midlands – 200 per cent increase
  • East Anglia – 166 per cent increase
  • South Central England – 157 per cent increase

While London, despite being the slowest-growing region, saw the number of home baking businesses almost double in the same time period.

Map showing increase in home baking businesses in the UK

Alan Thomas, CEO at Simply Business, commented: "The Great British Bake Off is a mainstay of UK television and has already inspired thousands of bakers across the nation to rise up and start their own independent business.

“In every region we’re seeing a year-on-year increase in the number of home baking businesses who are turning their passion into a business. In fact, it’s been the fastest-growing trade throughout the pandemic, building on a 157 per cent rise between 2019 and 2020.”

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Showing resilience by starting a business in a pandemic

Gary Rourke, one of our customers from Birmingham, started his own pie making business in May 2020.

He’d always been passionate about food, but the business was born out of necessity after losing his job when Covid-19 hit.

Rourke told us: “We started selling out of famer’s markers and I knew I could make something from it.”

While he had to pivot to only offering click and collect during the various lockdowns, now Rourke’s is now an established pie and bake shop.

Wondering how to start your own cake or baking business?

Read our 10-step guide to starting a baking business from home (or a marquee, if you prefer). It covers everything from registering your premises to how to develop your customer base.

It’s also important to sort business insurance. Public liability insurance and product liability insurance (usually sold together) can cover you if you’re sued by a member of the public for injury or damage.

Thomas added: "Small businesses are vital to the recovery of the UK economy, so the fact that so many aspiring cake makers are making the leap is extremely encouraging. Business insurance is a must for businesses who want to protect themselves and their treasured customers.

“For all the new businesses out there, we want you to know that Simply Business has your back."

Have you started your own cake or home baking business recently? Let us know your experience in the comments.

Photograph 1: xartproduction/

Protect your cake business

As one of the UK's biggest business insurance providers, we specialise in public liability insurance and protect more trades than anybody else. Why not take a look now and build a quick, tailored home baking insurance policy?

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We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always take professional advice. Read our full disclaimer

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