Master baker, CEO and Bread Sommelier Florian Lutz started his hugely successful baking channel ‘Mehlschmiede’ during lockdown. His YouTube channel has turned this baker into an internet sensation. Florian Lutz gave iGlobenews an exclusive interview and discussed his motivation to go digital, his passion for baking and the secret of his success.
By Diana Mautner Markhof 9.11.2021
Master baker Florian Lutz (known to his YouTube fan community as Flo) is a very busy baker, CEO and local politician for his hometown of Ludwigsburg, Germany. During lockdown, he used the extra time at home to embark on a new business endeavor. It was a project close to his heart, a project he had been toying with for some time. He already had the perfect name for his internet channel – ‘Mehlschmiede’ or the Flour Forge. He did his research, ticked the boxes, put together a plan of action and voila – his YouTube channel went online 1 May 2020. Flo’s motto: “believe in what you do and have fun”.
In the digital world success is measured not only in dollars and euros, but in likes, subscribes and views. Flo’s Flour Forge has been a blazing success on all these fronts. His YouTube channel has gathered a growing loyal fan base of c. 21 600 followers. His videos have been viewed over 1 million times with his most popular videos hitting over 250 000 views and counting. He has accumulated thousands of likes and all this in a little over one year of ‘digital’ existence. But most importantly he continues to bring smiles to many viewers by brightening up dreary lockdown days with interesting, easy to follow and visually pleasing baking videos of deliciously scrumptious baking marvels.
Florian Lutz comes from a family of bakers. His family’s bakery and confectionary business by the name Lutz opened in 1964. What started as a small bakery has turned into a large gastro company with coffee shops and restaurants in and around Ludwigsburg, a town in the German state of Baden-Wuertenberg with a population of c. 94 000. The family business is currently being run by two generations of bakers and confectioners: Flo, his sister and his father, who is still in charge of the baking operations. His digital success has benefited his family’s baking business. People have become interested in the products he uses on his show and now appreciate and realize all the hard work that goes into baking, which makes Flo really happy. Sales in the Lutz bakeries are on the rise. Being an entrepreneur with a vision pays off.
In addition to being a baker and the CEO of his family’s business, Flo finds time to be politically active in his town. He is an elected member of the city and municipal councils of Ludwigsburg. One project he advocates is protecting inner cities: no malls and no traffic jams are something worth fighting for.
At the end of the day, his one true love is baking. The secret to his success: “if you do what you love then you will be authentic … people will also believe you and it will turn out good”. His top video is sourdough bread, named Lucille. Yes, this sourdough has a name – his wife who is also the camera woman, likes French names. Flo believes that every sourdough deserves a name.
“A warm welcome to you, I am your flour forger Flo.” His signature greeting rings from the screen at the start of his videos. His greeting and his characteristic baker’s outfit with its distinct collar in the colors of the German flag and the inscription Bread Sommelier, greet the viewer while upbeat music drums in the background. For the uninitiated, a Bread Sommelier, is what the name suggests a qualified sommelier for bread. The degree, only offered in Weinheim, Germany, is open to master bakers and provides further training in sharpening senses and increasing knowledge surrounding all things regarding bread and flour. A bread sommelier, similar to the more prominent wine sommelier, learns to tune all his senses and discover ideal combinations of foods and drinks to accompany bakery delights. Last but not least, Flo has a small pretzel tattoo and a small pretzel button on his outfit.
All his shows are in German. When asked whether he has thought of doing some shows in English he admits that this might actually be on his very busy agenda in the near future. The list of top videos from his channel would be the first to be re-recorded in English – although lesser viewed videos, such as the one on yeast water, should not be neglected. ‘More power to yeast water’, whose bread tastes somewhat fruity and very delicious.
Everyone loves bread and can relate to baking. It is a universal pastime and Florian Lutz speaks the language of bakers and baking enthusiasts. His global following look forward to his baking videos and his delicious recipes.