This cake shop, in the back streets of Vienna, is a perfect example of what local businesses do best. Their window is full of unique cakes – cakes one would not see in the window of an outlet from a chain of bake houses. In Vienna cakes tell local stories. Pastry cooks from different areas preserve their traditions in their recipes and designs. They compete to showcase their profession, working by hand to create works of art. It’s part of the charm of exploring the city, a charm I would like to see continue.
Back home in Victoria, thanks to tougher food regulations and the success of some chains we’re losing local cake shops. When they close we are left with supermarkets and chain outlets where the products are, often, less natural and certainly less local. While this will not necessarily shorten our lives, it takes away the delight of walking into the bake house to explore today’s delights.
I don’t see the sense in this kind of progress, replacing a local bake house with a chain store. However, I would not legislate to stop it. The answer, of course, is to eat cake, from an independent bake house, at every opportunity.
I am a fervent believer in small businesses. We uphold traditions. We employ locally. Our profits remain in the local area. We care more about our people and our community. We deliver better service.
A profitable small business profits many people. A profitable global giant, by comparison, profits few.
So, I eat cake and toast small business.