The company is this week launching the new line of Good Squared snacks to all US Starbucks ahead of a wider roll-out - but told this site that Project 7 would remain a confectionery business "first and foremost".
The Good Squared snack clusters are made with roasted nuts, dried fruits and ancient whole grains, and are non-GMO. With a suggested retail price of between $3.99 and $4.99, each 2.5-ounce bag contains three to four grams of protein per serving.
They are available in two flavors: Apple harvest with almonds, cashews, quinoa, pecans, apples, and ancient grains; and Urban Trail Mix with almonds, pumpkin seeds, blueberries, cranberries, quinoa and ancient grains.
Project 7 is known for its flavor innovation, such as the Build a Flavor gum line launched earlier this year that enables consumers to mix two flavors of gum – cookie dough and ice cream for example – to create a third flavor. The business launched its organic, gourmet gummy line across the US in March this year.
Project 7 CEO Tyler Merrick said the company had been developing the Good Squared range for around three years, and had invested a “considerable” amount of money in the products.
“Good Squared falls into the growing better-for-you category as it is made up of simple ingredients that customers recognize as well as enjoy on their own,” Merrick added.
Targeting coffee drinkers
Merrick added that Starbucks - the first chain to stock Good Squared - had been a "good partner" to Project 7.
“We have done some confection items there like our gum and gummy bears,” he said. “It goes without saying that Starbucks is one of the premier brands and retailers in the market and there are only so many outside products they carry in their stores so I am very grateful for them believing in us and giving us this opportunity.”
Good Squared was aimed at working professionals who are looking for a snack to go with their cup of coffee, according to Project 7, which is currently developing more flavors of the snack clusters.
“There will also be some other snack innovations we debut under the Good Squared brand over time as we learn how the market responds to these items," added Merrick.
‘Still a confectionery brand first and foremost’
He told this site there are a lot of crossovers between the confectionery and snack industries but added that confectionery would remain his company's focus.
“We are definitely still a confectionery brand first and foremost and that does not change,” Merrick said. “That is why we developed Good Squared. We wanted to start a snack brand under Project 7 that would allow us to try out some product ideas we have had.”
He added that he doesn't believe Good Squared will cannibalize sales of Project 7’s confectionery products.
“I think our existing gum customers that have come to know, support and love our brand are excited about us launching a snack brand… We are also trying to grow and bring customers who have not tried our gum or gummies before into our brand.”