Savory Social Media Listening
Listening Dates: April 1st – June 30th
New in Meatless
White Castle is hopping on the meatless train with their new vegan, plant-based slider called the Impossible Burger. The new offering will come on the signature White Castle square bun topped with onions, pickles, and smoked cheddar.
In addition to new vegan offerings, KFC plans to test out a Vegetarian Fried Chicken option in the U.K. in an attempt to offer a healthier alternative to some of their current menu items. The new Vegetarian Fried Chicken item aims to mirror the taste of the current chicken as the company plans on using their iconic eleven herbs and spices.
Sabra Dipping Company has just released a new, limited-edition hummus that will run through October that will feature Jackfruit, which is growing in popularity as a meatless alternative. The new dip is called Sweet & Smoky BBQ hummus with Jackfruit and Smoked Paprika and hit grocery store shelves back in May. Jackfruit is unique in the fact that it essentially is a fruit that, when prepared properly, mimics the flavor and consistency of barbeque pulled pork.
Kraft Heinz has been busy lately with some new products and most notably a new program called Springboard. The program was created to help nurture and develop the next generation of food & beverage brands, forge relationships with entrepreneurs, and cultivate new ideas and consumer trends. Most recently, Kraft Heinz has released six new products:
Kumana – This Los Angeles based company is best known for their signature Venezuelan-inspired Avocado Sauce that can be found in Safeway and Albertsons in the Pacific Northwest.
Ayoba-Yo – A South African inspired alternative to traditional beef jerky and meat sticks. The company uses high quality meat cuts and spices to deliver tender, savory, and sugar-free products.
Cleveland Kraut – A Midwest sauerkraut brand that was founded in 2014. Cleveland Kraut put a large priority in distinguishing their product from competitors by offering options including classic caraway, roasted garlic, whiskey dill, beet red, gnar gnar, cabbage & cukes, and curry kraut.
Poppilu – Poppilu offers a new healthier “guilt-free” lemonade beverage with less sugar when compared to many competitors. A unique fruit called Aronia berries (also known as black chokeberries) are also added as an antioxidant boost and give the beverage a light pink color. Poppilu currently has three flavors in their line-up: Original, Blueberry Lavender, and Passionfruit.
Quevos – Quevos developed a range of salty and crunchy egg-white chips that are low in carbs and fat yet high in protein. Current flavors offered are Paprika, Cheese, and Sour Cream.
Momofuku Chili Sauce – The popular Korean chili Ssäm sauce, created by Momofuku, will be available through Amazon.com in three difference flavors: Original, Smoky, and Spicy. Ssäm sauce is a spicy and tangy Korean chili sauce made with gochujang, miso, sake, soy sauce and rice vinegar.
In addition to Kraft Heinz partnering with smaller start-ups, they have also partnered with Food Network to launch a lineup of salad dressings, cooking sauces and meal kits called Food Network Kitchen Inspirations. All of these new products will be free from artificial flavors, colors and dyes. Their new products consist of eight salad dressings
(Italian Herb &
Garlic, French Style Dijon Balsamic, Creamy Parmesan Caesar, Greek Feta Herb Vinaigrette, Cuban Style Orange Citrus, Mexican Style Cilantro Lime, Mexican Style Mango Chipotle, and Asian Style Sesame Ginger), five cooking sauces (Japanese Style Teriyaki, Jamaican Style Jerk, Tuscan Style Herb & Balsamic, Thai Style Sweet & Spicy Chili, and Korean Gochujang), and five types of meal kits (Tuscan-Style Mushroom Risotto, Chicken Pad Thai, Shrimp Scampi, Spicy Szechuan-Style Chicken & Rice, and Chicken Tikka Masala).
Aside from Kraft Heinz’s Springboard incubator program, the company took to Twitter to gauge the interests of their consumers on a new “hybrid” product: Mayochup. That’s right, mayonnaise and ketchup combined in a single bottle. Heinz released this product back in April after nearly 55% of nearly 1 million voted “yes” on this concoction.
Keeping Up With The Innovators
But when companies go public with new product ideas, competitors are sure to be close behind with their own products. Hellmann’s (parent company Unilever) also released a new ketchup product in April called “REAL” in addition to their acquisition of premium condiments maker Sir Kensington. Hellmann’s REAL Ketchup is sweetened with honey and contains only six ingredients: tomato puree, honey, white wine vinegar, onion powder, spices, and salt.
Product Flavor Crossover
Conagra has teamed up with Taco Bell to introduce a new flavor to their BIGS Sunflower Seeds lineup: BIGS Taco Bell Taco Supreme. The company will use their original fire-roasted techniques while adding in spicy taco flavor to a signature crunch resembling that of a taco.
Is Charcoal The New Black?
Are black croissants actually a thing? While they do exist, it’s still questionable if this new approach will catch on to croissant lovers. They are called Charcoal Activated Vegan Croissants. While first found in London bakeries, more food bloggers are creating their own versions with powdered sugar and added flavors. Charcoal certainly has been making its presence known lately in certain foods like bagels, burger buns, pizzas and even ice-creams and has gained popularity for its detoxifying properties.
Carolina In My Mind
A Durham-based restaurant called Bull City Burger and Brewery offered something very unique during the Annual Exotic Meat Month celebration. Believe it or not, they’ve literally created a burger topped with a hairy, giant tarantula back in April. In addition, Bull City Burger offers more unique burgers during this promotion which include alligator, iguana, python, bison, turtle, and bugs.
North Carolina-based natural and organic food retailer, Earth Fare, recently released a line of global food products called Hand Picked, Discovered by Earth Fare. Since 1975, Earth Fare has distinguished itself as a leader in the healthy foods industry by developing a unique Food Philosophy that informs every product offered in the store. Their new line-up will consist of frozen vegetarian entrées from Thailand , hand-topped wood-fired pizzas from Italy, and an exclusive brie cheese made by a Vermont creamery.