Jersey Mike’s re-introduces Rosemary Parmesan bread after five-year hiatus

By Douglas Yu

- Last updated on GMT

Jersey Mike's hopes to add around 200 new stores by 2018. Pic: Jersey Mike's
Jersey Mike's hopes to add around 200 new stores by 2018. Pic: Jersey Mike's

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The US sandwich chain last featured its Rosemary Parmesan bread as a limited offer in 2013.

According to COO Michael Manzo, after receiving positive consumer feedback in survey conducted in 200 locations, Jersey Mike's has secured a “permanent place”​ for the bread on its menu.

Manzo said the private-label parmesan cheese the company uses for the bread is a more premium product than before, but Jersey Mike’s has decided not pass the additional cost onto consumers.

This is Jersey Mike’s second product rollout within the past three months: In November last year, BakeryandSnacks reported on its collaboration with Colorado-based Udi’s in introducing its first line of gluten-free sub rolls.

Both moves are part of Jersey Mike’s strategy to reach 180 to 200 new stores by the end of 2018, said Manzo.

“We finished 2017 with 173 new stores, [bringing it to] 1,348 stores in total,"​ said Manzo.

"Our expansion goal depends on the availability in real estate... [but] we do have our real estate team working fiercely to find locations.”

If we don’t reach 180 [locations], we’ll make sure the ones we have are the good ones – [we] don’t chase the number, [we] chase quality,”​ he added.

Increasing digital sales

Jersey Mike’s expects its 2018 growth to be fueled not just by its physical store expansion, but from increased digital sales as well.

Rich Hope, CMO of Jersey Mike’s Franchise System, said the company is one of the first sandwich chains in the US to create a “single, fully-integrated technology platform.

“Because of this, we can move nimbly from consumer feedback to activation and make other system-wide updates, quickly and efficiently,”​ he said.

“Online ordering sales were up last year, and we expect them to continue to grow in 2018.

“Jersey Mike’s is fortunate to have customers who are extremely passionate about our brand. We continue to enhance our loyalty club offerings, which seems to be resonating: The number of loyalty club members has grown 71% in the last three years.

"We get to know our customers through technology and can target them with special deals and offers we think they will like,”​ added Hope.

The company is currently redesigning its app, according to Hope.

“Part of that process is a complete review of current digital assets and how they can be enhanced for a better user experience,”​ he said.

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