KANSAS CITY – The market for flavors and flavor enhancers perceived as natural is growing. As food and beverage formulators continue to develop new products and reformulate established items with an eye toward the clean label trend, demand for such ingredients is continuing to rise. At the same time ingredient suppliers are capitalizing on the trend by adding new ingredients that meet the consumer’s definition of clean and natural.
The latest new product from Mondelez International, Inc., Deerfield, Ill., typifies the shift toward natural ingredients. The newest snack features globally inspired recipes and ingredients such as sweet potato, butternut squash and quinoa. Called Véa, the product is available in three formats, including Véa Seed Crackers in Greek Hummus with Olive Oil and Mexican Garden Herbs varieties; Véa World Crisps in Tuscan Herbs with Roasted Garlic and Andean Quinoa and Spices varieties; and Véa Mini Crunch Bars in Thai Coconut and Peruvian Sweet Potato varieties.
“From product inception to recipe development, each step of the Véa journey has been driven by the needs of ‘food explorers,’ those seeking new experiences in all aspects of their life, including adventures in food,” said Jason Levine, vice-president of marketing, Mondelez International. “With Véa, we stepped outside of our traditional innovation model and introduced an entirely new snack option with authenticity, speed and a global mindset.”
The snacks are Non-GMO Project verified and contain no artificial colors or flavors. The range was developed for millennial consumers, 81% of whom said they enjoy exploring new cultures through food, according to the company.
Mondelez executives originally unveiled the new product platform in February at the Consumer Analyst Group of New York annual conference. Véa builds on the success of the company’s Good Thins, a line of baked snacks that were launched more than a year ago. That product line generated approximately $70 million in sales in nine months, said Tim Cofer, chief growth officer.
“Véa truly underscores the best of what we’re doing across a wide range of growth capabilities, including breakthrough product and packaging innovation, real-time data analytics, comprehensive distribution across multiple growth channels and fearless digital marketing,” he said.
The Campbell Soup Co., Camden, N.J., is taking a similar tack and plans to introduce a new line of Goldfish crackers that target older children with the intense flavors they demand, but manufactured with ingredients and flavors parents will not reject.
“Through our consumer insight, we know that as kids get older, they begin to want intensely flavored chips,” said Luca Mignini, senior vice-president and president of Global Biscuits and Snacks, during the company’s July 19 investor day presentation. “We also know that moms don’t feel as good about giving their kids these types of snacks because of the ingredients, particularly artificial flavors and colors, and how those snacks are made, generally fried.