LISTED Fruitas Holdings, Inc. will soon offer pandesal and other bread products in its community stores, the company said, citing customer demand for freshly baked bread.

In a statement on Monday, the food and beverage kiosk operator said it plans to open several standalone “Babot’s Panaderya” branches that will offer pandesal and other bread products, with an initial target of four branches in Metro Manila and one branch in the provincial area.

For the bread production, Fruitas said it would be leveraging off the baking capacity of Negril Trading, Inc., which houses the company’s “De Original Jamaican Pattie” brand.

“As a result, Fruitas is initially entering the bakery business with minimal capital expenditure. Fruitas decided to enter the bakery business itself to serve the demand of its customers for freshly baked bread,” the company said.

The bread products will be sold via its community stores, CocoDelivery subsidiary, and in the soon-to-be established “Babot’s Panaderya.”

Its community stores are currently offering curbside ordering and pickup, and home and office delivery via the company’s CocoDelivery unit, which provides for flexible and improved consumer distribution.

The company also disclosed its plan to offer bread products in some of its kiosks and to selected institutional customers.

Fruitas President and Chief Executive Officer Lester C. Yu said baked bread is a perfect addition to the company’s community stores.

“Pandesal is a staple in Filipinos’ daily diet. Our entry into the bakery business is a natural step to achieve our vision of having every Filipino household consume at least one Fruitas product every day,” Mr. Yu was quoted as saying.

According to Fruitas, the total Philippine bread market is projected to be around P200 billion per annum.

On Monday, shares in Fruitas at the stock exchange rose 5.41% or eight centavos to close at P1.56 apiece. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave