Detroit-based Avalon International Breads’ best-selling stollen bread has spread to select stores in Chicago and New York City. The expansion is another phase in the company’s recent growth, which included opening a 50,000-square-foot production facility last February at E. Forest and Bellevue in Detroit’s east side.
“As our capacity has grown with the opening of our warehouse production facility, Avalon City Ovens, we have been able to take advantage of these new market opportunities in Chicago and New York,” says Ann Perrault, president and CEO of Avalon. “Plum Market and Whole Foods have been supportive partners throughout this process.”
Perrault says stollen — a German holiday bread filled with dried fruit, nuts, and spices — is just the beginning. “I feel like it’s an introduction this year to a bigger relationship for next year,” she says.
In preparation for Thanksgiving, Perrault estimated that the company had baked more than 700 pies. “My bakers have said, ‘We could have handled more easily.’ We didn’t (bake) any pies last year because our production facility was so small,” she says.
Founded in 1997, Avalon has grown from four employees to more than 50, generating sales in excess of $2.6 million annually.