Panasonic joins Pasco to serve ‘freshly baked’ bread in a minute

Courtesy of Panasonic Corp. and Pasco Shikishima Corp.
Panasonic Corp.’s oven is seen with Pasco Shikishima Corp.’s bread, both used in their new service.

Panasonic Corp. and Nagoya-based bakery Pasco Shikishima Corp. have started offering cafes, bakeries and restaurants a service that provides “freshly baked” bread and confectionaries that can be served in about a minute.

The bread and confectionaries are flash frozen to preserve flavor after being baked by Pasco, then reheated in Panasonic’s high-performance ovens to recreate the taste of freshly baked treats.

For a long time frozen bread has been used in the food and restaurant industry as an effective way to reduce food loss, but it generally takes about two hours to thaw naturally.

In addition, unsold bread had to be discarded when more was thawed than actually bought.

The companies said the service will help reduce food loss and decrease the number of unsold bread and confectioneries because an order will only be cooked when received. It will also improve the efficiency of store operations because the products do not need to be thawed.

According to an estimate by the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry, 6 million tons of food was discarded in fiscal 2018, and about half, or 3.24 million tons, was for commercial use.