Savory Social Media Listening
Listening Dates: October 1, 2019 – December 31, 2019
Chip off the NEW Block
How do you make a snack better? Make it spicy. This is nothing new. Cheetos and Lay’s have been producing Flamin’ Hot versions of their snacks for years. BUT…now the fire has spread to Kettle Cooked Lay’s. In February 2020 the thicker, crunchier version of Lay’s chips will release a Flamin’ Hot flavor, just in time for the Super Bowl. The Kettle brand of kettle chips is putting a twist on the traditional vinegar chips. As apple cider vinegar becomes increasingly popular (largely due to the touted health benefits), we may begin to see it in addition to traditional vinegar flavorings. Several potato chip brands are already selling apple cider vinegar flavors – the hint of apple and that extra bit of tang may prove to make this a permanent addition to the flavor lineup.
Kettle is also adding a new flavor for those who prefer to eat chips with their pinky out – Truffled Cheese and a Splash of English Sparkling Wine. This flavor, grown out of a partnership with a winery, combines the savory truffle cheese taste with a crisp hint of sparkling wine. This is not the first time a wine and cheese pairing has made its way to the snack shelf. If this flavor takes off, it will certainly not be the last.
Plant-Based Meat Options are Growing Like Weeds
Partnering again with Kellogg’s for the launch of its new plant-based meat line, Pizza Hut is following in the footsteps of many other fast food chains and offering a limited-time pie suitable for veggie- and meat-lovers alike. The Garden Specialty pizza features onions, mushrooms, and banana peppers, along with Morning Star “Incogmeato” Italian sausage, a new soy-based entry in the meat analogues category.
Nestle is also getting in on the meat alternative action, rolling out versions of several flagship products that feature plant-based meats. The new DiGiorno Rising Crust Meatless Supreme and Stouffer’s Meatless Lasagna star Sweet Earth Awesome Grounds, an alternative to the ground beef typically found in these products. With Nestle’s acquisition of Sweet Earth and a continued consumer interest in meat alternatives, this is sure to be just the beginning in its lineup of products remade with plant-based proteins!
Thanksgiving Flavor Without All the Labor
Thanksgiving is a time-honored and beloved tradition in America, but the time, effort, and money that go into the delicious spreads on kitchen tables across the country are often overlooked. For those looking for a taste of the former while avoiding the costs imposed by the latter, a couple of well-known brands have got you covered.
Pringles released a cornucopia of Thanksgiving flavors in the run-up to this year’s holiday, focused primarily on providing consumers with a set of “Turducken” flavors, which allowed consumers to mix and match their favorite flavors of fowl – turkey, duck, and/or chicken. While each flavor comes as a separate chip that can be enjoyed in its own right, Pringles designed the chips to work together as one distinct flavor, with reviewers noting the trio’s “salty” and “herbaceous” flavor, creating a flavor profile most aptly described as barbecue-adjacent.
Hardee’s also took a stab at recreating the tastes of the season with their Thanksgiving in a Box, which features hand-breaded Stuffing Chicken Tenders seasoned with sage and herb stuffing breading. This “main course” is accompanied by several sides, including Sweet Potato Waffle Fries, and a new take on a crowd favorite: Toasted Onion Green Beans. To round out the meal, Hardee’s developed a Savory Chicken Gravy dipping sauce intended for the tenders, but nothing is stopping more adventurous consumers from drowning all three portions in the signature sauce.
Sabra Raises a Toast to Portable Breakfast
Specialty toasts have been trending throughout the end of the 2010s and don’t appear to be going away anytime soon as we enter the new decade. Sabra, the company you know best for their hummus and guacamole products has introduced a portable breakfast line. Expanding upon their breakfast innovations kicked off by Avocado Toast, Sabra has added Hummus Toast to the menu. These new offerings pair crisp, whole-grain toast with hummus spreads inspired by the complex taste sensations of an everything bagel and the balanced yet delightful flavors of a lemon poppy seed muffin. Busy mornings just got a lot more interesting!
New Heat in the Peanut Butter Department
Unexpected spicy pairings are cropping up to meet the growing taste for heat – ketchup, honey, mayonnaise, ginger ale, coffee. It’s everywhere. The internet is littered with recipes about how to make your favorite things spicy (“Add 3 tsp. chili powder…”). An increase in preference for spiciness has increased the prominence of an entire product category – “spicy [insert food here].” If it’s edible, it can be spicy.