LOS ANGELES — Hero Bread continues its growth trajectory with an expanded retail footprint.

The brand announced its store count will increase from 2,300 to 3,500 retail locations at the close of Q1. This includes accounts with national retailers such as Albertson’s, Safeway, ShopRite, and the QFC division of Kroger.

“We want our product — which we believe is very nutritional and helps people with their health journey — in everyone’s hands and make it as easy and convenient as possible,” said YC Cheng, CEO of Hero Bread.


Hero announced its national retail launch in May 2023, broadening its reach from e-commerce and direct-to-consumer to brick-and-mortar retailers.

Partnering with retailers consumers regularly shop at allows Hero to use established distribution channels to provide further access to the brand’s better-for-you baked goods.

“We wanted to get the products into more and more doors, and we wanted to work with some partners that we really admire,” Cheng shared. “The big push was to get into QFC and Shoprite and working with Albertson’s and Safeway. That’s really where we targeted because we thought that that’s where our consumers are, and we feel like those are wonderful retailers in terms of how they treat their customers and their brand.”

The brand announced its store count will increase from 2,300 to 3,500 retail locations at the close of Q1.


Entering these retailers also built additional distribution, where Hero’s consumers currently are, and the feedback on this reach has been positive.

“With Safeway and Albertsons in Portland and Seattle, as well as QFC in the Pacific Northwest, we got a lot of thank-yous of happiness,” Cheng explained. “We’ve had very little exposure in that region and a lot of them have been buying online, but to have an option there has been really welcomed.”

Growth in these specific retailers, as well as potential stores such as Whole Foods Market, is driven by consumer demand.


“A lot of the stores that we’ve gone to, the buyer has said explicitly, ‘Our customers have been asking for your product,’ which is just hugely flattering,” Cheng said. “There’s a good push and pull where we make a really good product, word of mouth is spreading and consumers are going to the retailer and asking for us, which is a great position to be in.”

In addition to some Hero’s flagship products, which recently reformulated to include olive oil, newer innovations such as Hawaiian Rolls are finding space on retailer shelves. The company has a goal of having a presence in every state and metropolitan area. In turn, Hero hopes to continue innovating to meet consumer interest.

“Our goal is that we’re going to slowly continue to innovate on products so that we can cover the bases of any sort of flour product that people want,” Cheng said.