Close up of homemade mini burgers with stew beef, tomatoes and basil on wooden background, Modern delicious fast food, Low angle view. (Photo by: Natasha Breen/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Who Is The Woman In The Panera Logo?
By Aimee Lamoureux
Some famous food mascots are based on real people, some are fictional and cartoonish, and some fall somewhere in between. These middle-ground designs often aim to convey a real sense of warmth, friendliness, and familiarity, and perhaps none exemplifies this better than the Panera Bread logo, which features a woman named Mother Bread.
The sourdough bread starter is also called a "mother," and Panera's logo is meant to show Mother Bread carrying the starter to the bakery. The maternal figure, who holds the starter like a mother might hold a baby, conveys the warmth, comfort, and contentment that Panera hopes to give its customers.
The Panera Bread logo has undergone several changes — In 2005, a yellow background was added to give it a warmer glow, and the font was changed in 2011. More recently, in 2020, a green arch was placed behind Mother Bread, which represents the mouth of a bread oven as well as Panera's commitment to whole, natural ingredients.