Consumers are wiser and want to know everything about their foods from farm to table, demands that are shaping R&D, says Rudolph Foods.
The US pork rind specialist has worked to ensure the majority of its products use local ingredients, said company marketing and innovation manager Kathryn Amatriain.
“Consumers want to know where their products are coming from, they want to know from the farm to the table how it’s getting to them and where it’s come from. We’ve got a wiser consumer that’s more engaged,” she told BakeryandSnacks.com at Snapxo 2014 in Dallas, Texas earlier this month.
Across the US, she said there was a ‘grow local; buy local’ movement that was going to continue to gain traction and importance.
“As a result, we have to be really conscious in the flavors and ideas that we go for with end development because we need to keep all that in mind,” she said.
The company had certainly taken a much closer look at its supply chain in light of this local trend, she said. “Our customers are just demanding that we start to look at these things and get ahead of the game.”
Challenging for NPD?
Asked if the demand for local ingredients was a challenge for Rudolph Foods, Amatriain said: “It is a challenge, but one we’re really excited about.”
The company had started looking back through its portfolio to see where changes could be made to fit these consumer needs. Although, she added, the majority of Rudolph’s portfolio already used US ingredients.
However, she said that with future new product development, the company would start to call out local provenance on-pack.
“The new Gaslamp Sea Salt & Olive Oil popcorn, for example, has ‘made in California’ on the front of pack and we’re partnering with California Olive Ranch on this to feature their bottle,” she explained.
This improved provenance communication would play into the needs of the consumer, she said.