What’s trending in bakery and snacks? Novel releases, brand extensions and expanded footprints

By Gill Hyslop

- Last updated on GMT

We've put our ears to the ground to find out what's trending in the bakery and snacks sectors. Pic: GettyImages/marchmeena29
We've put our ears to the ground to find out what's trending in the bakery and snacks sectors. Pic: GettyImages/marchmeena29

Related tags Pop-Tarts Frozen 2 Gluten-free Meat snacks fighting hunger non-GMO King Arthur Flour Krusteaz vegan Nairn's

Pretzels get a makeover with Pop-Tarts, Krusteaz rolls out a raft of baking mixes and Made for Drink moves into mainstream. From tried-and-tested brand extensions to brand new launches, BakeryandSnacks scours the shelves to find out what’s trending.

Into the ‘pillar’ of the food fraternity

Team shot - New Prime Bar

Prime Bar is making a debut into mainstream retail with three of its high protein meat snacks.

Smokey & BBQ, Fruity & Flavoursome and Sweet & Spicy are rolling out in Marks & Spencer, Ocado, Selfridges and food wholesalers.

The savoury snacks are made from 100% grass-fed British beef combined with whole food ingredients like fruits, seeds and spices, and are gluten- and dairy-free.

Making the migration from ‘intriguing niche’ to ‘pillar of the food fraternity’ can be an anxious step, but according to Prime Bar cofounder Freddie Gore Browne, the rising popularity of minimally processed meat snacks over the ‘avalanche of overtly processed, sugary treats that currently clog the protein snack space’ makes it the right time, right now.

Gore Browne also claims meat snacks are rapidly establishing themselves as the second fastest growing snack category within the UK, despite the ‘upbeat headlines’ the plant-based movement is currently enjoying.

“Prime Bar came about as a result of two best friends and frustrated endurance sports enthusiasts feeling despondent every time we peered deep into the darkest recesses of our ruck sacks only to be greeted by the grim reality of unpalatable sports gels & sugary sweet treats,”​ said Gore Browne.

The Future Brands team at Sainsbury’s took Prime Bar under its wing and the resulting 60+ store trial provided a platform to garner consumer feedback. 

“We’re indebted to our Sainsbury’s friends, because exposure to well-informed supermarket consumers quickly confirmed that we only needed to make a couple of ‘easy win’ tweaks (packaging & recipe) to kickstart a major momentum shift in our fortunes,”​ he added.

Gluten-free fights hunger


Denver, Colorado-based crisp producer 34 Degrees has launched its first gluten-free product.

Original Gluten Free Crisps hit shelves at select Whole Foods Markets this month, with additional retailers to follow.

The thin, light and crunchy crisps are made with just six ingredients including chickpea flour, which is naturally gluten free and rich in protein and fibre. 34 Degrees uses steamed chickpea flour, which removes the often-prevalent iron taste, resulting in a buttery finish.

The crisps are also non-GMO, dairy-free, plant-based and have only 70 calories per pack of nine crisps.

“We took great care in selecting the best ingredients and taste tested hundreds of recipes to get the flavour and texture just right,”​ said Craig Lieberman, founder and president of 34 Degrees.

Every batch of 34 Degrees Original Gluten Free Crisps is produced in an allergen-free facility and tested to ensure they exceed the gluten-free FDA standard. Each box has an RRP of $5.49.

34 Degrees donates 1% of all crisps it bakes to causes that fight hunger.

Paleo and gluten-free bakes


King Arthur Flour has developed two new options for consumers following paleo and gluten-free diets.

Its paleo baking flour features a blend of cassava, almond and coconut flour and may be substituted 1-to-1 for all-purpose flour. The flour is certified gluten-free and Non-GMO Project verified, contains 130 calories and provides 4g of protein and 4g of fibre per ¼ cup serving.

 The brand’s gluten-free single-serve dessert cups come in two flavours – Super Fudge Brownie and Chocolate Chip Cookie. The desserts – which are also certified gluten-free and Non-GMO Project verified – are made with rice flour and whole grain oat flour, containing 250 calories per 2oz cup. It’s a treat to prepare, too: just add water, stir and microwave for 30 seconds.

“As the No. 1 gluten-free baking brand, we are excited to be able to offer our customers a more portable, convenient way to enjoy gluten-free baked goods with gluten-free single-serve dessert cups. We are also excited to make baking easier for our paleo and grain-free consumers with our new paleo baking flour,”​ said Bill Tine, VP of marketing, King Arthur Flour.

King Arthur paleo baking flour is packaged in 1lb bags and have an RRP of $11.99 at Publix, Walmart, Meijer and Harris Teeter. The dessert cups retail for $2.59 per cup and are available at Target, Kroger, Wegman’s and Harris Teeter.

Perfect pairing takes flight

thumbnail_Made For Drink_Chorizo-Salami_Drink_Colour

It’s going to take a lot more than a British winter to dampen the spirits at gourmet snack provider, Made for Drink.

The Berkshire-based producer is currently finalizing preparations to extend it footprint across 500+ Sainsbury’s and 300+ Waitrose stores, as well as the entire Cook estate in December.

The family-owned business was founded in 2016, creating snacks Duck Fritons, Chorizo Thins and Mangalitza Salami Chips for Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck Group, Fortnum & Mason and Rick Stein.

According to founder Dan Featherstone, the snacks pair beautifully with a drink and are made with the finest ingredients, including free-range Devonshire ducks, traditional Hungarian salamis and authentic Spanish chorizo from a small family producer in Galicia.

“Over the past three years, we've built Made For Drink in pubs, hotels & speciality retail,” ​said Featherstone. “Our retail distribution now allows us to make our snacks accessible to millions of people as part of their everyday lives. To see these partnerships come to life is an amazing moment in our business journey.”

One is not enough


Just one [product launch] is certainly not enough for baking, pancake and waffle mix brand Krusteaz, which has launched a raft of high protein and whole grain mixes, including:

  • Blueberry Protein Pancake
  • Wild Blueberry Protein Muffin
  • Banana Nut Protein Muffin
  • Chocolate Chip Protein Muffin
  • Buttermilk Maple Microwave Protein Pancake
  • Cinnamon Brown Sugar Microwave Protein Pancake
  • Blueberry Microwave Protein Muffin
  • Banana Nut Microwave Protein Muffin
  • All Purpose Protein Pancake and Baking Mix
  • Protein Cornbread

The products are made with 100% whole grain flour and contain between 9g-15g of protein per prepared serving. They are also made without artificial flavours, colours and preservatives.

“With the success of our first Protein Pancake Mix and growing demand for more nutritious breakfast options, we were inspired to create a full lineup of products that will make it easier to feed your family well, without sacrificing great taste,”​ said Andy Heily, president & CEO of Continental Mills, owner of the 87-year-old brand.

“For people who are looking for new and exciting ways to add protein to their diets, we've answered with more options to be enjoyed not just at breakfast but at any time of the day."

Available at retailers around the US, they mixes range in RRP from $3.99 to $4.99.

No more splitting

KaterBake gluten-free vegan wrap available from Central Foods

A soft, flexible gluten-free wrap specifically developed for the foodservice sector has been launched by UK frozen food distributor Central Foods.

The 10.5” high fibre KaterBake wrap is suitable for vegans, vegetarians and coeliacs.

“Wraps are a key ingredient of many of today’s popular food trends, such as street-food-style dining and grab-and-go, and the KaterBake gluten-free plain wrap will help to ensure that all customers are able to enjoy eating wraps, regardless of any dietary needs,”​ said Central Foods’ MD, Gordon Lauder.

“Being soft and flexible, this product has been developed to overcome the issues of splitting during preparation, which has sometimes been a challenge in the past with gluten-free wraps.”

Each wrap weighs 55g and has a defrosted shelf life of two days.

Northamptonshire-based Central Foods supplies more than 400 product lines into foodservice, ranging from vegetarian and free-from items, bakery items and canapés.

The KaterBake gluten-free wraps are available at selected wholesalers across the UK.

Just in time for Christmas


Nairn’s has launched Gluten Free Oats, Apple & Cinnamon Chunky Biscuit Breaks to capitalise on the growing demand for free from products.

The biscuits – which feature ‘a more substantial biscuit bursting with flavour and packed with wholegrain oats – is latest addition to Nairn’s Biscuit Breaks range, which include Oats & Syrup, Oats & Chocolate Chip and Oats & Stem Ginger.

According to the Edinburgh-based company, the latest vegan-friendly product has an ‘autumnal and almost Christmas-like flavour profile.’

“We are constantly striving to grow the free-from category and provide consumers with an even wider choice of healthier products that also deliver on taste,”​ said Emma Heath, head of marketing, Nairn’s.

“This latest launch is no exception, and we’re delighted to introduce the new Biscuit Breaks with a classic flavour combination that, based on research and current trends, is sure to be popular.”

Nairn’s Gluten Free Oats, Apple & Cinnamon Chunky Biscuit Breaks are available in the UK at an RRP of £1.75 for 160g.

A hot collaboration

Cheez It

Kellogg has teamed up with Disney to excite fans ahead of the much-anticipated follow-up to the highest-grossing animated film of all time to release a Frozen 2-inspired cereal, Frozen 2-themed Kellogg’s snacks and breakfast waffles, and specially marked in-pack giveaways and movie snack cash back offer.

The cereal brings magic to breakfast with sweet O's, multicoloured leaves and Olaf marshmallows. Enthusiasts will also find Anna, Elsa and Olaf featured in the snack and frozen foods aisle with Disney's Frozen 2 Eggo Waffles, Cheez-It Crackers and Keebler Graham Snacks.

Specially marked Kellogg’s cereal include one of four temporary tattoos of a Frozen character and with every purchase, consumers will receive a $6 movie-snack cash reward to redeem in theatres.

Available from local grocery stores around the US while supplies last. Disney’s Frozen 2 airs in theatres form November 22.

Sports & nutrition go mainstream


Europe’s number one sports nutrition brand Myprotein is debuting in the grocery sector with a listing in Co-op.

The brand is rolling out its 6 Layer Bar (Birthday Cake flavour), a Double Chocolate & Caramel Filled Protein Cookie and the Carb Crusher (Fudge Brownie flavour) on shelves around the UK for an RRP of £2.50.

 The 6 Layer Bar – launched earlier this year as a guilt-free snack to support fitness enthusiasts in a more convenient way – is packed with  20g of protein, while the Carb Crusher – coated in chocolate and topped with crunchy crispies – packs a whopping 23g of protein and is low in sugar. It’s also loaded with magnesium and zinc.

The Double Chocolate & Caramel Filled Protein Cookie is a rich dough coating a gooey centre, decadent but still healthy with 20g of protein and less than 1g of sugar.

This is Myprotein’s first foray into grocery, but with eight million global customers and the Sports Nutrition bar segment growing at 23.8%, it expects the rollout to hit the mark with mainstream shoppers.

“As we see a shift in consumer attitudes towards protein and a bigger focus on lifestyle choices, sports and nutrition has become less niche and now appeals to more mainstream shoppers,”​ said Matthew Moulding, founder and CEO of Myprotein maker, The Hut Group.

“This change in consumer behaviour is something we have seen through our online audience and the demand for our bars and snacks in an easily accessible on-the-go format is in higher demand than ever as people see them playing a role as a healthy alternative to traditional confectionery.”

Adding bottle to home baking


East Anglia’s only gluten free bakery, Davina Steel, has also won a listing with Co-op.

Three of its gluten free kits and mixes – including Pizza, Scone and Garlic & Rosemary Focaccia – will  be rolling out in 25 Co-op East of England stores.

This is the bakery’s first listing with Co-op, which opened a purpose-built gluten free bakery earlier this year. The firm will be supporting the launch with instore sampling.

“We are very excited to be launching into East of England Co-op, particularly as one of the stores is in Halstead, our home town,”​ said Dan Jennings, co-founder, Davina Steel.

“It’s fantastic to be able to get our kits and baking mixes into the hands of more customers and extend the opportunity for people to bake gluten free more easily at home.”

The Davina Steel portfolio includes six sweet and savoury kits, including Garlic & Rosemary Focaccia, Onion Focaccia, Chocolate Chip Focaccia, White Loaf Mix, Pizza Base Mix and Scone Mix. Also available in in Sainsbury's and Ocado.

Baking up an ecommerce gifting programme

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Great American Cookies can now be shipped to family and friends nationwide.

The retail cookie shop has launched an ecommerce platform, which offers a customised gift box featuring a dozen freshly baked cookies. The customer can choose from four popular flavours – Original Chocolate Chip, Sugar, Double Fudge and Birthday Cake – and sent with a personalised message.

Gift boxes are delivered within 1-2 business days or can be picked up the same day from participating local Great American Cookies stores.

"We are known for baking the freshest and most delicious cookies and our new ecommerce programme maintains our high level of quality while offering unsurpassed freshness,” ​said Lisa Cheatham, VP of Growth Marketing for Global Franchise Group, franchisor of the brand.

“Customers can send some fresh baked love to friends, family or even someone who doesn't have a Great American Cookies' nearby. They are also convenient for corporate gifting."

Orders placed before 6am (Monday-Friday) are baked at the company’s Innovation Centre in Atlanta and shipped the same day. Orders placed over the weekend are processed on Monday.

The gift boxes have an RRP of $25.99 plus shipping and tax, while prices for instore pickup vary as stores are independently owned and operated.

Best sellers


PeaTos has debuted in Barnes & Noble bookstores across the US.

The pea-based snack brand – which boldly touts a ‘junk food’ taste – is now available in the bookstore’s cafes across 627 retail outlets in 50 US states, giving readers the chance to ‘get their junk food fix with the unjunkiest junk food’.

“It is a perfect marriage because PeaTos touts no story except for taste: once you try it you are hooked! In the same way eating and reading goes hand in hand, PeaTos marries ‘junk food’ taste with better-for-you attributes so that consumers get the best of both worlds,”​ said Nick Desai, PeaTos’ CEO.

Desai also noted the synergy between PeaTos and great books: “Once you pick them up, you won’t be able to put them down until you’re done.”

PeaTos are made using a patent-pending technology to create a snack that tastes and crunches like a traditional corn-based snacks, but made from peas. In addition to the nutritional profile, peas are ahead of corn in terms of sustainability as they require less water, no nitrogen fertilizers and are naturally gluten-free and non-GMO.

In addition to Barnes & Noble, PeaTos is available at selected retails around the US and on Amazon.

Staying sweet, with a salty edge


Pop-Tarts has announced it is extended its toaster pastry lineup by giving the classic pretzel snack a sweet new makeover.

Pop-Tarts Toaster Pastries combine the craveable, fashionable flavour combo – merging the slight saltiness from a pretzel crust with a sweet burst of either Chocolate or Cinnamon Sugar.

“Pop-Tarts is always ingeniously creating new ways to enjoy familiar, loved foods,"​ said Joe Beauprez, marketing director, Pop-Tarts.

“With the debut of Pop-Tarts Pretzel, we’ve fixed a snacking staple, and added two more delicious options to our line-up of flavours.”

Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts Pretzel will land in stores nationwide in January 2020 with an RRP of $3.49.

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