PepsiCo Smart50 popcorn

PepsiCo Smart50 popcorn

US giants Kraft Heinz is among the food companies to have launched eye-catching products this week.

PepsiCo unveils Smart50 low-cal popcorn in US

US food and beverages giant PepsiCo has extended its better-for-you snacking range by launching a low calorie popcorn in its home market.

Smart50, part of the company's Smartfood brand, contains only 50 calories per cup and is available in White Cheddar and Sea Salt variants.

Tracey Williams, senior director of marketing at PepsiCo, said: "With the launch of Smart50, we wanted to show consumers that making smart choices doesn't mean having to sacrifice fun or flavour.

"As our latest innovation, Smart50 extends our brand mission to provide simple and transparent ingredients and is designed to make consumers feel good about their snacking choices."

Smart50 is made from 100% whole-grain popcorn. It is available from retailers nationwide and comes in 5oz and 6oz bags with a RRP of US$3.99.

UK's Piccolo launches bio-based baby food pouches 

UK organic baby food brand Piccolo claims to have become the first baby food brand to launch pouches made from bio-based material in the UK

It has created bio-based packaging for its Piccolo Pure and Multipack pouch ranges

The new packs offer a lower carbon alternative, made from 80% bio-based material.

Cat Gazzoli, founder of London-based Piccolo, said: "At Piccolo we are passionate about sustainable practices and this latest development is another step we are taking on our journey to becoming a greener business. We are delighted to be able to offer families a lower carbon alternative to standard plastic across our popular Pure and Multipack pouches."

Piccolo's range now consists of 50 products across all the big UK grocers. 

Its bio-pouches are set to roll out across UK stores from this month.

Del Monte Foods launches cauliflower-based Contadina Pizzettas

US-based Del Monte Foods has launched cauliflower pizza bite alternatives through its Contadina brand, best known for canned tomatoes.

Contadina Pizzettas are a frozen product described as a "wholesome alternative to the traditional pizza bite". They are available in three flavours: Four Cheese, Margherita and Garden Vegetable.

Liam Farrell, VP of brand marketing for Del Monte Foods, said: "After months of looking at the latest food trends, better understanding of our consumer needs and competitive landscape, we're excited to offer this alternative to the traditional pizza bite with real, authentic Italian flavour right in your local grocery's freezer aisle."

The products feature a blend of tomato sauce, cheese and crust baked with cauliflower and contain no artificial preservatives or flavours.

The Pioneer Woman links up with Kraft Heinz on frozen range

US-based the Pioneer Woman has collaborated with local food giant Kraft Heinz on a new range of frozen products.

The Pioneer Woman is Ree Drummond, the creator of The Pioneer Woman website, the author of a best-selling cookbook author and the host of her own show on The Food Network.

She has worked with Kraft Heinz chefs to "bring her homestyle flavours and textures to life". Kraft Heinz supplies manufacturing and packaging capabilities as well as ingredients for the products.

The range is made up of breakfasts, sides and appetisers and includes poppable Chorizo Egg Bites, Roasted Vegetable Egg Bites, Cowgirl Quiche, Green Bean Casserole and Sweet Potato and Kale Casserole.

Drummond said: "My new line of frozen breakfasts, sides and appetisers is perfect for families like ours who want flavourful options they feel good about serving and eating, without having to do all the prep work."

The Pioneer Woman's new frozen range has a RRP of US$5.99.

Kraft Heinz's new grain-based brand

The ketchup and cheese maker has unveiled Amazing Grains, a new brand marketing convenience food containing "ancient grains".

Kraft Heinz has launched overnight oats to target breakfast and "fusion grain bowls" to cater to meals later in the day.

Both are available in "select grocery stores", Kraft Heinz said.

Three varieties of the overnight oats are on the market - mocha almond, apple blueberry and cranberry maple. Kraft Heinz has developed four types of the meal bowls, including ginger teriyaki and zesty margherita.

The oats have a suggested retail price of US$1.99, with the bowls put forward for $2.99.

Whitworths to launch plant-based ready meals

Whitworths, a UK-headquartered producer of dried natural snacks, is entering a new category in plant-based foods.

Founded in the 1800s by the three Whitworth brothers, the company manufactures a range of snacks using dried fruit, nuts and seeds but also makes natural-ingredient snack bars and baking ingredients. 

However, Whitworths, based in the county of Northamptonshire, is launching a range of Protein by Nature meals. The six-strong line-up offers an alternative to meat and can be consumed as a whole meal occasion or as a side dish.

Protein by Nature uses 100% plant-based ingredients, with each dish offering 20 grams of protein.

Managing director Phil Gowland said: "It was clear from speaking to consumers that we needed to overcome three clear barriers: offer genuine good-for-you products rather than a product masquerading as healthy, don't compromise on taste - the biggest barrier to healthy eating and keep it simple and convenient. Delivering products that do this is exactly what the Whitworths brand has been doing in snacking for the past few years, our wide recognition and unrivalled brand trust made this move an obvious one for us to take."

A spokesperson for Whitworths said the company is "very engaged" with UK retailers for the launch of the Protein by Nature meals, which are a source of vitamin B and minerals, offer consumers their five-a-day options and are low in fat, sugar and salt.

The line-up features: Mediterranean tabbouleh; Brazilian smoky beans; Moroccan tagine; Indian lentil dhal; Mexican spicy grains; and Vietnamese grains.

Surya Foods launches new range under Laila Naturals' brand 

Laila, the rice brand owned by world foods producer UK-based Surya Foods, is branching out into new categories such as lentils and beans with 19 new SKUs.

The products are being rolled out under its new Laila Naturals' brand which uses 100% recyclable packaging, including chickpeas, kidney beans, semolina and polenta.

Surya Foods said it is tapping into the "wholefood and vegan trends" with the new launch. Managing director Harry Dulai said: "Laila Naturals is a range dedicated to bringing the best plant produce from around the world, rich in natural proteins, fibre, iron and vitamins, to UK consumers so they can enjoy nature's power houses of protein and energy.
 
"We are continually looking for ways to evolve our brand for consumers who have come to know and trust the Laila brand - which is synonymous with quality, authenticity and great value - and this has been a natural brand extension."

The Laila Naturals' range is now available at Morrisons and Asda.