Einstein Brothers Bagels found success in its restaurant concept, with more than 1,000 across the country. Now, it is looking to expand into retail to give its customers better access to the brand.
Andrew Heald, director of sales for the Lakewood, Colorado-based company, recently sat down with The Shelby Report to share some of the company’s newer bagel innovations. He said buying bagels at the company’s restaurants and grocery stores are different occasions.
“The customer that’s buying a bagel at a grocery store is buying it for an at-home engagement. Consumers buying at a restaurant are on the go, they want to eat in the restaurant,” he said. “It’s a completely different occasion.”
Heald said the company’s CPG division is “pretty small and young,” but it is looking to grow.
“We’re rolling out a whole series of other categories that are kind of adjacent to the breakfast occasion,” he said. “Right now, we’re focused on bagels. We’ve got seasonings, which is our Everything Seasoning, and cream cheese, in a limited capacity. But we look to expand upon that in the future years.”
Among Einstein’s bagel offerings for retailers, Take & Toast is its most broad scale choice, Heald said. Another is a par bake program, where the retailer has to finish the baking process on site.
Flavors include Everything, Plain, Cinnamon Raisin and Asiago.
“Asiago is pretty unique to us,” Heald said. “The other three are pretty common. Everybody’s got those, but this [asiago] is our unique one. Our customers love it. It’s one of our most popular in our restaurants.”
These four flavors make up about 80 percent of sales in the restaurants and are considered Einstein’s core offerings.
“We’ll have future innovation as we go on, but we know that these are the ones that are going to do the hardest work for us,” Heald said.
Today, Einstein Bros. Bagels may be found at Walmart, Safeway and Amazon Fresh. The bagels also can be found in the Publix bakery case, sold as single bagels. Heald said the company is looking to expand into more retail locations.