Leftovers is our look at a few of the product ideas popping up everywhere. Some are intriguing, some sound amazing and some are the kinds of ideas we would never dream of. We can’t write about everything that we get pitched, so here are some leftovers pulled from our inboxes.
Perfect Bar layers on the flavor
Perfect Bar is aiming to take a bigger bite of the refrigerated bar market with layers.
The Mondelēz International-owned brand is launching Perfect Bar Layers in two flavor pairings: Crispy Peanut Butter & Chocolate and Crispy Peanut Butter & Berry. Both bars contain a crispy base of blended peanut butter and cashew butter with quinoa and honey, a layer of dark chocolate or 100% fruit spread and a sprinkle of toasted gluten-free oats on top.
“Perfect Bar Layers is a recipe we’ve been dreaming up in our test kitchen for years, and we finally get to share all its deliciousness with the world,” Leigh Keith, co-founder and chief of brand and culture for Perfect Snacks, said in a statement. “The Perfect Bar Layers line brings a fun new format and unique flavor combinations to our existing lineup, while still maintaining the quality nutrition, taste and ingredient standards we’ve had for nearly 20 years.”
Perfect Bar Layers not only brings variety to the chilled offering found in some 40,000 stores, but the classic flavors also allow it to tap into the growing consumer demand for nostalgia that gained momentum during the COVID-19 pandemic. The bars have high levels of protein as well as better-for-you ingredients for shoppers who are looking to eat healthier. They are also Non-GMO Project verified.
Mondelēz purchased a majority stake in Perfect Snacks in 2019 to build its snacking portfolio. It has since broadened its reach into bars by buying Clif Bar & Company for at least $2.9 billion in 2022.
The refrigerated snacks segment is forecast to reach nearly $74 billion by 2028 from $52 billion in 2021, a compound annual growth rate of 5.1%, according to The Insight Partners. Included in that segment are baked goods, fruits and vegetables, yogurt, meat snacks, bars and sandwiches.
— Christopher Doering
Splenda splashes into drink mix
The brand known for being poured out of its yellow packet into beverages is now creating drinks of its own.
Low-calorie sweetener Splenda has launched zero calorie and zero sugar Peel & Pour Drink Mix pods, which are liquid concentrate mixes. They come in Pink Lemonade, Sweet Tea, Fruit Punch and Peach Mango flavors.
The pod is designed to be poured into two quarts of water, the company said. Splenda said its debut in the category was designed to coincide with summer, targeting consumers looking to lower their sugar intake ahead of the season.
“We know that drink mix category sales rise from Memorial Day through Labor Day, making this the perfect time to offer Splenda Peel & Pour for summer’s gatherings, whether it’s graduation parties, backyard barbeques, pool days or family reunions,” said Jeff Marvel, Splenda’s senior brand manager, in a press release.
While Splenda was an early entrant into the sweetener space in 1991, the drink mix category is already crowded territory. It contains classic brands like Crystal Light and Kool-Aid, along with newer brands like Sonic. As consumers have increasingly prioritized their health and wellness, brands like Emergen-C and Celsius have emerged with drink mixes touting benefits like immune and metabolism support.
Splenda’s decision to eschew powder and embrace liquid concentrate could help it stand out in the category.
— Chris Casey
Alouette lets grills say ‘cheese’
As people fire up their grills for summertime cooking, Alouette is hoping that they don’t forget to add the brie.
The cheese brand known for its traditional rind-encased brie wheels, as well as a spreadable version of the French favorite, is launching a new Brie for Grilling variety this summer. The company says this new cheese was crafted by French experts. It is creamy and melty, but can hold its round shape when cooked on a grill.
“Americans love Brie, especially when it is baked or melted, with 6 out of 10 fans preferring it that way,” Alouette Vice President of Marketing Kriston Ohm said in a release. “We’re debuting Brie for Grilling with this in mind to give home chefs, hosts, and cheese lovers a unique way to enjoy the creamy, melted delicacy of Brie this summer without ever having to turn the oven on or leave their backyard.”
Brie is one of the softest cheeses, and is already half melted at room temperature. Baking the cheese so that it melts inside the rind is a popular preparation, but the rind doesn’t always hold up to the strong heat. Recipes for grilled brie recommend the cheese wheels be grilled indirectly — using heat from the grill, but not directly under the product. Alouette says its brie can be placed right on the hot part of the grill.
While brie is far from America’s favorite cheese — only 3% name it as such, according to a 2021 YouGov survey — it is a popular snack here.
According to the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association, 80% of all U.S. homeowners, and 70% of all households have at least one grill or smoker. More than half say they grill for the flavor, and 40% do it for the lifestyle. Alouette’s new offering allows that flavorful lifestyle to incorporate French cheese.
— Megan Poinski