72-year old man runs growing baking business in Sask. after teaching himself how to make bread

72-year old man runs growing baking business in Sask. after teaching himself how to make bread

Jim Hadfield says that he is up as early as 4:00 a.m. some days baking, in hopes to be done by noon so that he can get the baked goods packaged and ready for delivery.

The work is all part of his baking business, Jim’s Bread, Buns & Cakes,  that he’s been running out of his hometown in Milestone, Sask., after he retired in 2007 — and the 72-year-old says he has no plans on stopping anytime soon.

“It keeps me active and I think it’s important that at my age to remain active, I enjoy it,” he said.

Hafield says that Christmas fruitcakes, breads, buns and cinnamon buns are all part of his menu that he shares with customers across Saskatchewan from his home in Milestone, around 50 km south of Regina.

A man smiling in front of a cake.
Jim Hadfield says that running the business keeps him active and says that it’s important to remain active at his age. (Submitted by Jim Hadfield)

He said he begins baking cakes on Wednesdays, and delivers them to customers in Regina and surrounding areas on Fridays. 

Hadfield said he began baking after finding it difficult to find bread he could enjoy, and after visiting several different stores and bakeries, he decided that it would be best to teach himself how to bake the bread. Soon after he would learn how to bake buns, cinnamon buns and cakes.

“I took my cinnamon buns to a local event in Milestone, a lady from Regina said ‘these are the best I’ve ever tasted, you need to go into business.’ I laughed,” he said.

But three months later, Hadfield said he launched a website with the help of his cousin, and officially sprung into business. 

Hadfield says that bread was the first baking dish he learned how to bake. He says he began learning after finding it hard to find good bread to eat. (Submitted by Jim Hadfield)

He said business was “modest” around the start, but when he created his Facebook page, he noticed business beginning to pick up. Now he communicates with 17,000 followers on the platform daily around orders and menu options. 

Hadfield says his business has allowed him to explore his talents by learning to bake more items he can add to his menu, such as his Christmas fruitcake — which has become a major part of his business.

He began baking them around six years ago, and says last year he baked 276 fruitcakes. This year he plans on baking 400. 

LISTEN | Retirement is a time to loaf around, and Jim Hadfield is taking that literally:

Saskatoon Morning6:52Retirement is a time to loaf around and Jim Hadfield is taking that idea literally

Host Theresa Kliem talks with Jim Hadfield, who has traded in a suit and tie for an apron to follow his passion for baking.

Hadfield begins taking orders for holidays such as Christmas and Easter months in advance, and pre-orders usually fill two months before the holidays. 

While some items may be popular around the holidays, he says he doesn’t have a favourite dish. He loves everything that he’s baked and shared with his community. 

“I do about 18 different kinds of layer cakes, and I enjoy doing that, but I still enjoy doing the bread, buns and cinnamon buns too,” he said.