Product showcase 2020: Love is in the air with Cupid-approved Strawberries & Cream popcorn, RedLove apple crisps and iconic British puds

By Gill Hyslop contact

- Last updated on GMT

Fall in love with snacking again. Pic: GettyImages/Rawpixel/Anastasia Molotkova
Fall in love with snacking again. Pic: GettyImages/Rawpixel/Anastasia Molotkova

Related tags: Butterball, vegan, Krave Jerky, Allergen, Delifrance, Nim's, Roberts bakery, Charlie bigham, Cape cod, Popcornopolis

February is snack food month. It’s also the month of love with Valentine’s Day (February 14) and a day that only comes around every four years, traditionally reserved for marriage proposals (February 29). So why not stock up with snacks to boost that euphoric mood?

Creamy, tangy and savoury

Cape Cod Sour Cream & Onion potato chips

Cape Cod Potato Chips has added a new flavour to its lineup.

According to the US snack maker, its Sour Cream & Onion is a combo of ‘creamy, tangy sour cream and a savoury hint of onion’.

The new flavour has been added to the brand’s extensive range, including Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper, Limited Batch Honey & Dijon Mustard, Aged White Cheddar & Sour Cream, New England Bisque and Infused Fresh Jalapeño.

The Massachusetts company was founded in 1980 by brothers Steve and Jude Bernard, who wanted to create a healthier snack made with little processing. Cape Cod chips are kettle cooked in small batches as opposed to the continuous frying process most other brands use. The chips also contain no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.

Cape Cod originally started selling its chips in a small store in Harwich, but has grown to become a national brand, producing 1.1 million bags of potato chips a year and sold in all 50 US states.

Today, it is owned by Campbell Soup, through the acquisition of the chip’s parent company, Snyder’s-lance.

Cape Code Sour Cream & Onion are available in retailers nationwide, including Walmart, Albertsons and Stop & Shop, for an RRP of $3.79.

Cupid approved

minivalentinescones_c40

Gourmet popcorn brand Popcornopolis has rolled out an array of Valentine gifts to ensure hearts and tastebuds ‘poppin’ with love on February 14.

“Our new Valentine Hearts Mini Cones are the perfect go-to Valentine’s Day gift, whether you are hosting a Valentine’s party or handing them out to schoolmates or to co-workers,”​ said Popcornopolis chef Phil Fox.

“Recipients will be smitten by the delectable popcorn and the adorable ‘ready to gift’ packaging.”

The Create-Your-Own Valentine Roses 2-gallon popcorn tin and Valentine-themed Gift Baskets allows consumers to customise the assortment of flavours, using seasonal favourites like Strawberries & Cream, made with real strawberries.

Popcornopolis was founded by Wally and Kathy Arnold in 2002 when the Arnolds opened its first Popcornopolis retail store in Los Angeles, California. Today, the company’s cone-shaped and bagged popcorn packages can be found in grocery and club stores, sports arenas, movie theatres and online.

Be my Valentine

Charlie Bighams

Charlie Bigham’s has launched its first range of ready-to-bake puddings called Proper Puds.

Available exclusively in selected Waitrose stores across the UK, Charlie Bigham’s Sticky Toffee Pudding, Sticky Ginger Pudding, Chocolate Fondant, Bread & Butter Pudding and Cherry Bakewell Pudding will all appear in the brand’s iconic wooden trays (RRP of £5.50 for a 2-4 person serving).

The British classics are made with the choice ingredients, including Belgian chocolate shards, sherry-soaked raisins, cinnamon sugar and sweet cherry compote and can be served, freshly baked, in just 15-20 minutes.

Proper Puds is the brand’s most significant launch of recent years, which saw revenue grow by 18% in 2019 and the opening of a purpose-built bakery at its London kitchen.

“After receiving hundreds of customer requests for puddings, we realised the scale of consumer appetite for traditional sweet dishes, which not everyone has the time or skills to make just as they should be,”​ said founder Charlie Bigham.

“This is the first time that the Bigham’s brand has ventured away from the premium ready meals category in almost 25 years, and this is our way of giving shoppers what they need to round off a tasty meal.”

Proper Puds will be supported by instore POS, PR and social activity from February onwards. A Proper Puds version of Charlie Bigham’s current advertising campaign, ‘Only Delicious Will Do’, has been developed by long-time creative partners, Creature.

Quiet chilli kick

Munchy seeds

Munchy Seeds has extended its savoury roasted seeds range with the introduction of Mild Chilli.

The crunchy blend of sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds has a gentle ‘kick’ of chilli and chipotle, and is packed with nutrients and vitamins.

“When we launched our new range in September, we always knew we wanted to introduce another delicious and savoury snack pack. Mild Chilli is a lovely blend with a nice kick of chilli, which is incredibly moreish too,”​ said Lucinda Clay, co-founder of Munchy Seeds.

“We see Mild Chilli as perfect for those looking for a savoury choice for their everyday healthy snacking, but also a great addition to salads and stir-fries to boost nutrients and flavour in every bite.”

Mild Chilli is available in a range of UK outlets – including Sainsbury’s, Lakeland and Whole Foods, as well as online – in a 25g snack pack for an RRP 80p.

Sustainable indulgence

Roberts Ultimate Hot Cross Buns Jan

Roberts’ Ultimate Hot Cross Buns – which combine indulgence with a sustainable twist – have just hit Tesco shelves in the UK.

The buns are made from an enriched dough infused with orange oil, real fruit pieces and upcycled bread ferment – marking Roberts’ first foray into reusing ingredients that would have previously gone to waste.

Each year, 1.9 million tonnes of food is binned by the UK food manufacturing industry. Taking steps to reduce such statistics, Roberts’ upcycled bread ferment is made from its white loaves that are slightly misshapen and not ideal for sale.

Roberts upcycles them in a fermenter, along with other ingredients, to create a sponge that is then added to its Ultimate Hot Cross Bun mix.

To drive the eco-friendly message home, the buns are also packaged in packaged in paper that can be recycled at home.

“Who doesn’t love a fruity hot cross bun - warm, rich, toasted and slathered in melting butter?”​ asked Alison Ordonez, director of Innovation at Roberts. “We like to think that we’ve created the ultimate snack and teatime treat with this latest luxurious addition to our range.

“Even better, they’re available now, so you don’t have to wait until Easter to get your hands on them.”

Roberts Ultimate Hot Cross Buns are available in Tesco stores across the UK. Each four pack has an RRP of £1.39.

Will you marry me?

Valentine's Crisps (L)

Nim’s – the UK’s only air-dried fruit and vegetable crisps manufacturer – has created a limited edition range of RedLove crisps, especially for Valentine’s Day.

The crisp are made from a naturally crimson coloured fresh variety of apples, aligned with the brand’s commitment to delivering healthier alternatives to traditional snacks.

Available in 20g packs for an RRP of £1 and available exclusively in over 1400 Tesco stores across the UK.

The company has also released a gift box that contains two packs and a card to invite ‘your loved one to share with me’ or even a marriage proposal…

“I’m pretty sure this is the first ever dedicated Valentine crisp pack ever sold,”​ said Nimisha Raja, founder of Nim’s Fruit Crisps.

“We wanted to create a fun, affordable gift and, given it’s leap year, maybe even use it as a unique way of proposing to your ‘crisp-loving’ Valentine .

“The limited edition ranges are proving extremely successful for our business and this Valentine special comes just a few weeks after we sold thousands of packets of our ‘festive’ crisps.”

Raja said the RedLove apple range paves the way for future launches in 2020, with Halloween set to be another big opportunity.

Nim’s products – which are one of your five-a-day – are nut- and gluten free, and certified vegan and kosher, sold in Tesco, Waitrose, Morrisons and across hundreds of independent UK retailers.

Striking a balance

DELIFRANCE FEEL GOOD_ vegan croissant ii

Bread, viennoiserie, pâtisserie and savoury bakery supplier Délifrance has extended its Feel Good vegan croissant range to meeting the growing demand for plant-based viennoiserie.

The new addition replicates the texture and taste of the classic French butter croissant by using wheat flour and shea butter. It joins the supplier’s existing range of five spelt-based croissants, which include its Vegan Croissant with Oats, Spelt & Quinoa, Blueberry, Citrus, and Lemon & Ginger.

According to The Vegan Society, with 2% of the global population now identifying as vegan, there’s a rising expectation for vegan clean label bakery. Délifrance’s claims its new vegan croissant responds to these consumer expectations and is the cleanest vegan plan croissant on the market, containing minimal ingredients and no palm oil.

“Our new vegan croissant strikes a balance between indulgent tastes and experiences, and consumer demand for cleaner, healthier products. With rising vegan and flexitarian populations, launching this new croissant was the next natural step,”​ said Stéphanie Brillouet, marketing director for Northern Europe and North America at Délifrance.

“Our insights from consumers also tell us that vegans feel left out of the breakfast experience, with their breakfasts lacking tastiness and indulgence.

“By using the right blend of vegan-friendly ingredients, we’ve replicated the much-loved staple of the French butter croissant. It’s brilliantly versatile - enjoyed either as an indulgent sweet treat with spreads or fruit, or as a savoury breakfast or snack with vegan cheese and vegetables.”

Pick a pocket

Mikeys

Gluten- and dairy-free hand-held snack producer Mikey’s has introduced two new Pockets – Buffalo-Style Chicken and Cauliflower & Broccoli Cheddar – to meet the needs of allergen friendly, clean label, better-for-you consumers.

All Mikey’s Pockets provide great taste in convenient frozen hand-held meals, using only recognisable ingredients and are free from six of the top allergens.

Created by Michael Tierney, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, the new varieties join Mikey’s Pepperoni Pizza and Cheese Pockets, and Egg & Cheese and Egg, Ham & Cheese Pockets, along with allergen-friendly English muffins, tortillas and pizza crusts.

“Like most kids, I loved to eat pockets,”​ said Tierney. “Then, while training as a chef, I learned about the questionable ingredients found in most frozen meals and thought that there must be a healthier option to one of my childhood favourites.

“After coming up short on my search, I was determined to recreate a better pocket, but this time with high quality ingredients and without any gluten, dairy, grain or soy.”

Mikey’s Pockets are sold in packs of two for an RRP of $5.99, available from 7,000 stores across the US in natural and grocery channels.

Clean fuel

Krave

Hershey-owned meat snack producer is releasing two better-for-you snacks: Krave Plant-Based Jerky and Krave Pork Rinds.

The jerky – made from peas and fava beans – is Krave’s first departure from meat-based products.

The vegan snack has 8g of protein per serving and comes in Smoked Chipotle and Korean BBQ.

Krave Pork Rinds – available in Chili Lime and Al Pastor Taco – are made from hormone-free, all-natural pork.

"With the growing number of snacking occasions and evolving nutritional expectations placed on those snacks, consumers are dramatically altering the way we think about innovation,”​ said Jimmy McClain, Krave brand manager.

“Nowhere are these changes more evident than the demand for plant-based products and the adoption of specialised diets like paleo and keto.

“Krave Plant-Based Jerky and Krave Pork Rinds are a direct response to what our consumers have been asking for: more portable snacks tailored to their specific diets that provide clean fuel throughout their busy days.”

The products are available online, on Amazon and in selected natural and conventional grocers across the US. A 2.2oz bag of Krave Plant-Based Jerky has an RRP of 5.99, while Krave Port Rinks have an RRP of $3.49.

Energising creations

butterball_bi

Butterball is hoping to disrupt the snacks sector with its new line of Premium Snacks.

The range includes Thanksgiving Seasoned Turkey Breast with Stuffing Bites & Dried Cranberries; Citrus Teriyaki Seasoned Turkey Breast with Sesame Sticks & Dried Pineapple Pieces and Cajun Seasoned Turkey Breast with Cornbread Crisps & Dried Apple Pieces.

“Snacking is a popular category that is already filled with many protein options, so we challenged ourselves to find a way to make Butterball Premium Snacks stand out on the shelf,”​ said Michelle Lieszkovszky, Innovation Brand Manager, Emerging Innovation.

“Moving away from the typical cheese and cracker varieties or the protein-only options often found in the snacking space allowed us to venture into more complex flavour combinations and offer unexpected snack components, like cornbread crisps and dried pineapple.

“We’ve reimagined the snacking space and struck the perfect balance of coupling unique flavours with a strong nutrition profile.”

Each snack is portioned for a convenient experience, contains 100% all-natural turkey breast with 10g of protein and is only 140-180 calories per serving.

According to the company, it has a lower sodium compared to leading competitors.

Added Jeff Mundt, VP of Research & Development and Innovation, Butterball, “There has been a significant demographic shift in recent years and the buying power of younger consumers means companies have to be constantly innovating to adapt to the changing demands and desires.

“It’s an exciting time to be innovating for a storied brand like Butterball. We’re always looking for ways to introduce fun and energising creations that get people excited about new ways to enjoy a favourite protein.”

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