Home Bread-Bakers v096.n031.14

Digest Bread-Bakers.v096..n30.4

Danny Dunn <dandunn@flash.net>
Sat, 17 Aug 1996 11:29:18 -0500
Yaara asks what is the cost of baking bread in an ATM versus buying bread at
the store?  
I thought this was an interesting question, so the next time I went to buy
groceries at my local Wal-Mart I recorded the cost and amount for typical
bread ingredients.  I am sure that the cost of ingredients varies greatly
all over the world and are probably lower if you bought in bulk, but here is
my list: Milk $2.17/gal (I used 2%), Bread Flour $1.64/5 lbs, Salt $0.35/26
oz, Butter $2.33/lb, Sugar $1.86/5 lbs, Yeast $6.97/7 oz.

The receipe I am using is for Basic White Bread from "Bread Machine Magic"
(1.5 lb loaf) - 1/2 cup water, 5/8 cup milk, 3 cups bread flour, 1 1/2 tsp
salt, 1 1/2 Tbs butter,     3 Tbs sugar, 1 1/2 yeast.

(To simplify, I have omitted all the conversion factors used.)

Butter - 1 lb = 32 Tbs for $2.33, therefore 1 1/2 Tbs = $0.110/loaf.

Milk - 1 gal = 18 cup for $2.17, therefore 5/8 cup = $0.076/loaf.

Bread Flour - 5 lb = 10 cup for $1.64, therefore 3 cups = $0.492/loaf.

Sugar - 5 lb = 160 Tbs for $1.86, therefore 3 Tbs = $0.0360/loaf.

Salt - 26 oz = 156 tsp for $0.35, therefore 1 1/2 tsp = $0.003/loaf.

Yeast - 7 oz = 42 tsp for $6.97, therefore 1 1/2 tsp = $0.249/loaf.

Water - I could use the cost of bottled water from the store at $1.00/gal,
but I think this is way too high.  Looking at my last water bill, tap water
is probably less than $0.01/gal.  I am therefore going to consider the cost
of water used in the loaf of bread to be negotiable (i.e., less than

The total cost of a loaf of bread (listing most to least expensive
ingredients) -

                       Ingredient        Cost per Loaf (Cents)

                       Bread Flour              49.2

                       Yeast                    24.9

                       Butter                   11.0

                       Milk                      7.6

                       Sugar                     3.6

                       Salt                      0.3

                       Water                     0.0
                       Total                    $96.6/loaf

When I was at Wal-Mart I noticed that a 1 1/2 lb load of Wonder bread cost

Conclusions - It cost about as much to make bread in an ATM as it does to
buy it already made at the store.  The most expensive ingredients in a leaf
of bread are flour and yeast.

Danny L. Dunn <dandunn@flash.net> Ft. Worth, Texas 
"If you don't learn anything from your mistakes,
then there's no sense in making them!"