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EDC Client, Iowa City-based Breads From Anna, Has Record 4th Quarter and Expands Internationally

IOWA CITY, IA – January 10, 2013 –Anna Sobaski, Founder and President of BreadsFrom Anna recently announced record sales for the 4th quarter of 2013.  Her business enjoyed expansion into new products, distribution channels, and geographic markets.  “We were one of the first to enter the gluten free market and our consumers and retail partners have been quite loyal and continue to support us and spread the word, Sobaski said.   Responding to customer demand, Breads From Anna quickly expanded from only one gluten-free bread mix into a complete line of gluten and allergen-free mixes, including breads, quick breads, crusts and pie pastries, muffin and pancake mixes, and brownies.  “We have baking mix solutions for the top eight USDA allergies,” said Sobaski.  The top eight allergies include milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy, fish, and shellfish.  “Plus, we find a growing number of customers with rice allergies, so we provide rice-free mixes as well.”

Breads From Anna achieved several milestones in 2012, including expansion into the Middle East market through a new Dubai distributor, and acquisition of several new retail and channel partners.  Sobaski saw significant growth in her retail sales as well as sales to restaurants, bakeries, and caterers.  “Bakeries, caterers, and restaurants are really persnickety; they won’t offer anything to their customers that doesn’t taste great, bake up with good consistency, and offer good nutritional value.”  One of her valued caterer customers provides gluten-free muffins to Hollywood film crews, and she currently has a few happy celebrities on her customer list.  The seventeen store bakery/restaurant chain, Grand Traverse Pie Company, recently brought on her mix for apple muffins to bake and sell in their bakeries.

In addition to new channel and retail partners, Breads From Anna also launched a new line of Black Bean Brownie mix.  “It’s quickly becoming a very popular item with our customers.  I call it our anti-obesity brownie.  It tastes very rich, is really filling, and has lower sugar, and much more protein and fiber than you would find in the typical brownie,” said Sobaski.  As a Diabetic herself, Sobaski said she and her Diabetic customers also find that they experience less glucose spikes with her bakery mixes.

Sobaski’s business was launched out of a strong personal desire to make tasty and nutritious gluten and allergen-free breads. “I was diagnosed with both Celiac Disease and Type 1 Diabetes, so I was very familiar with the problems those with food allergies and intolerances have.  There just weren’t gluten-free options on the market at that time and giving up bread was a lot to ask someone!”  Sobaski completed the Chefs Training Program in New York City at The Natural Gourmet Cookery School Institute for Food and Health, which equipped her with the know-how and training to develop more complex, highly nutritious and tasty products. 

Because of the attractive growth of the gluten-free market, there are many new market entrants and many more competitors than when Sobaski started her business eight years ago.  “There is a bit of ‘gluten-washing’ going on in the gluten-free market, and sadly, that causes consumers to have to be very diligent.  If you have a gluten or other allergy and mistakenly ingest a product with even a trace of that item in it, you can have a severe reaction.” Sobaski moved her production to a new Iowa City facility in 2010, which is USDA certified and Kosher.  It is a “clean” manufacturing facility, ensuring no cross-contamination.  “When we say our product has no wheat in it, you can be sure that it doesn’t,” says Sobaski.  Breads From Anna products are endorsed by the leading national food allergy authorities, including the Celiac Disease Foundation, the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center, the University of Maryland Center for Celiac Research, and Columbia University Dietitians, among others.

Sobaski is currently gearing up for the Valentines holiday, introducing a new recipe for Black Bean Brownie Ice Cream Sandwich, using her Black Bean Brownie Mix.  “It’s so yummy you will be making it again in March!”

About Breads From Anna
Breads From Anna, an Iowa City, Iowa headquartered business,provides gluten- and allergen-free baking mixes to consumers around the world through the company website and over a hundred national and international retail partners.Breads From Anna mixes are known for being free from common allergens and having superior taste and nutritional content.  For more information, visit www.breadsfromanna.com.

About Anna Sobaski
Chef Anna Sobaski is the Founder and President of Breads From Anna, a leading gluten and allergen-free baking mix company.  She is an expert in the area of gluten and allergen-free living and a graduate of the premier institute for learning about food as medicine; the Natural Gourmet Cookery School Institute for Food and Health in New York City.  Anna demonstrates her passion for helping people enjoy a gluten and allergen-free lifestyle by continuing to develop mixes and recipes and traveling the country teaching gluten and allergen-free cooking classes and workshops.  She has been featured in many of the industry’s premier magazines and is a sought-after speaker at conferences, support groups, and health food stores.   For more information, visit www.breadsfromanna.com.

About EDC, Inc.
The Entrepreneurial Development Center was incorporated in 2003 as a community-sponsored, non-profit business accelerator. The company provides economic growth through the development and expansion of entrepreneurial enterprises and has successfully assisted over 500 Iowa-headquartered businesses. Its focus is on creating local wealth for area re-investment by growing and cultivating regional, national, and international businesses.For more information please visit www.edcinc.org.