Native Snacks on trajectory growth drive with vegan, sustainable-grown popped lotus seed snack

By Gill Hyslop contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Native Snacks, Burts Snacks, vegan, sustainable, better-for-you, Sainsbury's, Ocado, lotus seeds, lentils

Native Snacks on growth upswing with new manufacturing partnership, listings and seed funding. Pic: Native Snacks
Native Snacks on growth upswing with new manufacturing partnership, listings and seed funding. Pic: Native Snacks
The London-based startup’s deal with Burts Snacks to domestically manufacture its Popped Lotus Seeds – previously processed in India – has secured two major listings and a round of seed funding to support growth.

The UK brand will continue to source the ancient seeds of the water-growing lotus flower from Bihar in north eastern India – one of the country’s poorest states – which is aligned to its mission to create snacks with a long lasting social impact.

The brand partnered with the Bihar Development Foundation UK to give back to the region’s farmers​ and donates a penny from each pack sold to support health camps in Bihar.

Native Snacks only made its debut with Popped Lotus Seeds last year, but can already be found in a number of UK retailers, including Selfridges, As Nature Intended and Sourced Market.

It has now boosted its growth trajectory “to grow into a household name”​ with the partnership with Burts Snacks – which itself will be rolling out its refreshed better-for-you lentil crisp range next month.

More and more consumers are opting for healthier snacking choices, with the better-for-you snack space experiencing a 9% growth over the past year, currently worth over £218m.

“Native Snacks is redefining plant-based snacking with their range of Popped Lotus Seeds, a genuinely better-for-you alternative snack that is big on crunch and packs a flavour punch,”​ said Simon Knight, sales and marketing director, Burts Snacks.

On a mission

On the back of the partnership, Native has secured listings with Sainsbury’s – as part of the retailer’s Future Brands initiative – and Ocado, which will dramatically further its presence across the UK.

The startup has also raised £150,000 of seed funding to support its growth phase, from investors including Rupert Hambro, founding investor and ex-chairman of Sipsmith Gin; Matthew Glover, founder of Veganuary; and Dominic Perks, founder of Hambro Perks.

“This is a huge milestone for our company,”​ said Native’s cofounders Charlie Bowker and Darcy Ogston.

“We’re on a mission to bring new and exciting snacks from around the world back to consumers.

“Our recent funding round with investors allows us to further accelerate our growth and support our mission to become the next globally loved snack brand.”

The lotus seeds are popped under pressure – which it claims creates a healthy, yet light and crunchy snack – before being roasted and seasoned by Burts. 

Available in three variants - Sweet Chilli & Lime, Sea Salt & Vinegar and Sea Salt & Pink Pepper – the snacks are vegan, gluten-free, only 82 calories per bag, and contain 64% less fat than traditional crisps. Lotus seeds are also rich in fibre, protein, iron, zinc and phosphorus.

Now sold in 71 Sainsbury’s stores, Ocado, Selfridges, As Nature Intended,  Daylesford, Sourced Market, among other independents.

A refreshing wave

Lentil-waves

Burts Snacks has revitalised its Lentil Waves range to widen its appeal among the rising number of consumers looking for healthier and ‘free from’ options.

Available in three flavours – Sour Cream & Chive, Thai Sweet Chilli and Lightly Salted – the crisps carry the Cross Grain trademark and the gluten-free certification by Coeliac UK, as well as the nutritionally-based traffic light system to help consumers make more informed purchases.

The range is packed in bold new packaging to create standout on shelf, featuring a wavy design that is a nod to the brand’s Devonshire coastline heritage.

“We’re delighted to be rolling out a refreshed variant of our popular range of Burts Lentil Waves. Thirty percent of consumers already recognise the Burts Lentil Waves through association of quality, so the bright, new look packaging will help shoppers find our products on shelf quicker,”​ said Simon Knight, sales and marketing director, Burts.

“We hope that the improved health credentials will help to drive consumer appeal as more shoppers opt for free-from products to match their lifestyle choices. Currently, one in 100 people in the UK suffer from coeliac disease, so to be able to offer a great tasting snack that sufferers can also enjoy is incredibly important to us.”

The better-for-you range of Lentil Waves is rolling out in February 2020 in retailers nationwide, in single 20g packs for an RRP of £0.99 and five-piece multipacks for an RRP £1.80.

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