Beyond Meat Launches Chicken-Free Strips
Beyond Meat, the makers of plant-based protein foods that take the animal out of meat, is rolling out Chicken-Free Strips—offering consumers a plant protein that the company says is being touted as the most realistic chicken substitute to hit the market.
Beyond Meat provides consumers with clean, plant-based proteins that replicate the taste, texture and nutritional benefits of meat. Backed by Twitter co-founders Biz Stone and Evan Williams’ Obvious Corp. investment firm and San Francisco-based Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, Beyond Meat’s first introduction—Chicken-Free Strips—has been in the works for a decade.
Passionate about improving health, reducing ecological footprint and improving animal welfare, Beyond Meat founder and CEO Ethan Brown believes Americans are ready for more choices when it comes to protein—specifically clean, plant-based proteins. By launching a chicken substitute that doesn’t sacrifice on taste, chew or satisfaction, he believes anyone looking to reduce meat consumption will be able to do so easily.
“We believe the future of protein is animal-free. We want Beyond Meat to be sold as a meat alternative in places where you would ordinarily find meat. Whether that is in the meat case at your local grocery store or at your local fast food restaurant chain,” Brown said. “This is very different from how meat alternatives are positioned today where you have to hunt them down in a separate refrigerated section far from areas where you would find meat.”
Beyond Meat launched its Chicken-Free Strips nationally in Whole Foods Market in April. Tropical Smoothie will be the first national restaurant chain to offer Beyond Meat as a substitute for chicken in salads and sandwiches in 338 locations across 36 states beginning Tuesday.
Beyond Meat Chicken-Free Strips are made with a blend of pea and soy protein offering consumers 20g of protein per 3-oz. serving and 120 calories. The strips have no saturated or trans fat and are cholesterol free, gluten free, dairy free, meat free, egg free, GMO free, hormone free and antibiotic free. They are available in three flavors: Southwest, Lightly Seasoned and Grilled.
Snikiddy To Preview New Individual-Size Bags At Snacks & Sweets Expo
Snikiddy will introduce 1.5-oz. bags of Snikiddy All-Natural Baked Fries and Eat Your Vegetables at the Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago next week, May 21-23. The new smaller, portion-controlled bags will be available in Snikiddy’s most popular flavors, including All-Natural Baked Fries Cheddar Cheese, Sea Salt and Hot & Spicy, and Eat Your Vegetables Sea Salt and Sour Cream & Onion, the company says. The company will offer samples of the new bags at its booth, No. 2373, and will be featured in the new product showcase during the expo.
“We’re thrilled to be able to offer more accessible packaging options for the most popular flavors of our All-Natural Baked Fries and Eat Your Vegetables snacks,” says Mary Schulman, founder and EVP of marketing for Snikiddy. “As a family brand, we’re devoted to making wholesome better-for-you snacks easy and delicious. Our new 1.5-oz. bags make it easier than ever before for the whole family to enjoy healthy snacking anywhere, any time.”
Snikiddy All-Natural Baked Fries contain 50 percent less fat than regular potato chips and 35 percent less fat than regular veggie sticks and straws, the company says. Eat Your Vegetables is a flavorful line of crisps made with a blend of vegetables—offering a good source of vitamin A and fiber and containing 3g of protein per serving.
The 1.5-oz. bags currently are available at select retailers nationwide—including Safeway, select Target stores, Sprouts Farmers Market, The Fresh Market, Whole Foods Market, Toys ‘R’ Us and Babies ‘R’ Us as well as online at Snikiddy.com.
United Fresh 2013 Attendees Recognize Best New Products
Attendees of the United Fresh Produce Association’s annual convention and expo in San Diego cast their votes Wednesday and recognized this year’s New Product Awards in five categories. More than 30 fresh fruit and vegetable innovations competed in the categories of Best New Food Safety Solution, Best New Fruit Product, Best New Packaging, Best New Packing/Processing Equipment and Best New Vegetable Product.
The 2013 New Product Award winners are:
• Best New Food Safety Solution: FoodLink Item, Food Link.
• Best New Fruit Product: Lil Snappers, Sunkist Growers Inc.
• Best New Packaging Product: Sunset Display Ready Box, Mastronardi Produce.
• Best New Packing/Processing Equipment: RayFly Optical Sorter, Raytec Vision, SPA.
• Best New Vegetable Product: Pumpkin Pie Baking Kit, AMF Farms/Bay Baby Produce.
“These winning products have been selected by United attendees as outstanding representations of the new approaches, ideas and processes that are driving the fresh fruit and vegetable industry forward, and we applaud them for their product development,” said John Toner, United Fresh’s VP of convention and industry relations. “From its very beginnings, the United show has been the undisputed home of innovation for the produce industry, and these awards continue to showcase the best and brightest minds in the produce business.”
The finalists in each category were on display in the United Fresh membership booth on the trade show floor, and the winners were selected from votes cast by show attendees.
United Fresh launches Recall Ready Program
United Fresh this week launched the Recall Ready Program to help produce industry companies prepare for recalls as well as provide professional assistance for managing recall events. Ron Midyett, CEO of Apio and incoming chairman of United Fresh, announced the new program at United Fresh 2013 in San Diego.
“The Recall Ready Program is all about meeting the needs of our members in regards to one of our industry’s most critical priorities—food safety. If any of you don’t have an up-to-date recall plan, or haven’t been through recall training, I strongly urge you to consider this program,” said Midyett.
Recall Ready is designed to give companies peace of mind, and the confidence that they are prepared in advance and have the resources to respond to any recall situation. The program is a partnership between United Fresh and the legal and communications experts at OFW Law and Watson Green, who are counted among the food industry’s leading crisis counseling firms, according to a United Fresh news release.
Companies can choose program service options that include a recall plan review, creation of a custom recall plan and mock recall training. These program plans, with fees ranging from $5,000 to $15,000, help produce companies prepare for recalls and to learn how to deal with the surprises that can arise during recalls.
Additionally, once companies have completed one of these services to be prepared for a recall, they can engage United’s Rapid Recall Response Team to provide assistance from United and outside experts from the first moments of a recall crisis. The plan offers a 24/7 recall hotline and eight hours total consultation from United and Watson Green. The plan includes discounts on legal and communications services, if needed, beyond the initial consultation period.
“For minimizing the impact of a recall on your business, there’s nothing more important than having a plan and making sure your team is prepared to execute that recall plan,” said Dr. David Gombas, SVP of food safety and technology at United Fresh.
United will begin providing service under the Recall Ready Program in June. Members attending United Fresh 2013 in San Diego were able to register onsite for the program and receive a 10 percent discount.
MorningStar Farms Debuts Mediterranean Chickpea Veggie Burger
MorningStar Farms is introducing its Mediterranean Chickpea Veggie Burger, packed with chickpeas and vegetables.
“The Mediterranean Chickpea Veggie Burger is a bold addition to the MorningStar Farms’ lineup of meatless burgers,” says Michael Allen, president of Kellogg Frozen Food. “And with hearty, delicious chickpea recipes gaining popularity, we are excited to be bringing the brand’s first chickpea burgers to market, especially as summer grilling kicks off.”
The MorningStar Farms Mediterranean Chickpea Veggie Burgers come four to a pack and can be found in the frozen food section at retailers across the country.
Oscar Mayer’s New Products Include The Bacon Dog
Oscar Mayer said earlier this week that it will soon begin rolling out its five new hot dog products—including the Bacon Dog.
Beginning in June, consumers will be able to purchase the Bacon Dog—the first bacon hot dog on the market, according to Oscar Mayer. It is made with hardwood-smoked, authentic Oscar Mayer bacon.
“No one knows bacon like Oscar Mayer,” said Jared Baker, director of Oscar Mayer hot dogs. “We know Americans love bacon, and we know they love hot dogs, so it seemed like the perfect time for us to introduce our first hot dog made with bacon.”
Additionally, and also available beginning next month, Oscar Mayer is bringing back its Smokies product. The new Oscar Mayer Smokies Smoked Sausages will be sold in 14-oz., eight-count packages. Smokies are made with coarse ground pork and beef, and smoked with hardwood.
Oscar Mayer also is adding to its line of Selects hot dogs. The new Chicken Breast Hot Dog will continue with the Selects tradition of using no artificial preservatives, flavors or colors. Additionally, the hot dog is made with quality chicken breast, contains no added hormones and is gluten free.
Oscar Mayer has re-branded its 98% Fat Free Wieners and Light Beef Franks as Extra Lean Franks and Lean Beef Franks, respectively. The new Lean and Extra Lean Franks are full bun length including lean cuts of quality meat.
The complete line of Oscar Mayer dogs and franks can be found in the refrigerated meat case in most grocery stores nationwide.
Baskin-Robbins Launches First Retail Freezer Bar Product
Baskin-Robbins, the world’s largest chain of ice cream specialty shops, has launched a new line of shelf-stable sherbet flavored freezer bars, which are rolling out at major national retailers this spring. Baskin-Robbins’ Sherbet Flavored Freezer Bars are the first freezer bar treat from Baskin-Robbins that guests can purchase at participating supermarkets and drug stores nationwide. The company has partnered with Jel Sert, a leader in freezer bars, on the rollout of this new product as part of a licensing agreement.
“We are thrilled to bring the Baskin-Robbins brand to major retailers nationwide with the launch of our new Sherbet Flavored Freezer Bars,” said John Fassak, VP of business development for Dunkin’ Brands. “We look forward to introducing the Baskin-Robbins brand to even more people across the U.S. and giving our existing guests yet another way to enjoy our wide array of ice cream flavors and frozen treats.”
Each treat delivers two flavors in one freezer bar. Each box has 12 Sherbet Flavored Freezer Bars, which are available in two flavors—Rock ‘N Pop Swirl, a combination of grape and green apple flavors side-by-side; and Rainbow Sherbet, a combination of orange and raspberry flavors side-by-side. The freezer bars are shelf stable and meant to be frozen at home.
“At Baskin-Robbins, we are committed to product innovation and surprising our guests with delicious new creations that they can enjoy at our restaurants or at home,” said Stan Frankenthaler, Baskin-Robbins executive chef and VP of product innovation at Dunkin’ Brands. “Our Sherbet Flavored Freezer Bars are a new twist on two of our classic flavors and we’re so excited to introduce them to ice cream lovers nationwide.”
Baskin-Robbins’ Sherbet Flavored Freezer Bars will be available at a suggested retail price of $2.99 to $3.49.
East Riding Farm Brings Popovers To The U.S.
East Riding Farm is introducing Popovers to grocery shoppers in the U.S. The popovers are made from a traditional English recipe and provide a golden, crispy, bread-like complement to stews, soups, desserts and other dishes.
Popovers are light, airy rolls baked with a central depression for adding a favorite filling. Made with only a handful of ingredients, East Riding Farm’s All Natural Popovers are easily prepared, requiring only 4 minutes in a preheated oven to go from freezer to tabletop.
East Riding Farm offers three sizes of Popovers: Bite-size, for appetizers, hors d’oeuvres and snacking; Regular size, an alternative to biscuits, croissants, pasta or rice; and Bowl-size, a light alternative to bread bowls, flan casings and ice cream cones.
“We are very excited to introduce popovers to the U.S. because of their countless uses, thanks partly to the range of sizes available but also thanks to the almost endless eating occasions they can enhance,” says Amanda Moorhouse of East Riding Farm. “There is nothing quite like a popover. They lend themselves to creativity in the kitchen, make a tasty complement to most other foods and bring excitement to almost any meal you can think of.”
East Riding Farm’s All Natural Popovers are available at H-E-B, Central Market, Shaw’s, Harris Teeter, Rouses Supermarkets, Fiesta Markets and select Whole Foods Market stores nationally as well as a variety of natural food retailers nationwide.
La Brea Bakery Introduces Three New Ciabatta Breads
Artisan bread brand La Brea Bakery has introduced a new line of par baked Ciabatta breads that feature authentic recipes made from all-natural ingredients. The breads are available in three varieties: Ciabatta Loaf, Ciabatta Piccolo Loaf and Garlic Ciabatta Loaf.
La Brea Bakery’s Ciabatta breads include a tender interior and thin crusts. They are ideal for sandwiches, garlic bread or simply torn apart and dipped in fresh olive oil or olive tapenade.
“As a significant segment in the artisan bread category, Ciabatta has seen continued growth over the past year, which makes these three breads timely additions to our customers in-store bakery bread programs,” said Jennifer Johnson, brand manager for La Brea Bakery.
La Brea Bakery was founded by pastry chef Nancy Silverton in 1989. The bakery operates a flagship storefront in Los Angeles, in addition to a casual dining restaurant in Anaheim, Calif. La Brea Bakery is owned by Aryzta, a leading manufacturer and distributor of bread, buns, cookies, pizza and other premium baked goods.