This week’s batch of new products includes a “gut-friendly” breakfast cereal from Cereal Partners Worldwide and Strauss Group claiming a “first” in the chocolate market.

Benecol reformulates cholesterol-fighting yogurts

Benecol, the yogurt brand owned by Finland’s Raisio, has reformulated its cholesterol-lowering product range.

Its cholesterol-fighting yogurts now contain two grams of plant stanols in every pot, enough, it claims, to “reduce high cholesterol levels in only two-three weeks”.  

“This convenient ‘one-a-day’ format is a UK market first in the cholesterol-management category,” it said.

The reformulated yogurts are available from most major supermarkets from October in four-packs in Strawberry & Cherry and Raspberry & Peach at a recommended retail price of GBP3.15 (US$3.86).

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Benecol nutritionist Sarah Franciosi said: “We are excited to market our new yogurts in the UK which we believe taste great and will make getting the right daily dose of plant stanols even easier for those who want to lower their cholesterol. Eating just one pot daily with a meal will help people with raised cholesterol conveniently reduce this, without having to make dramatic lifestyle changes.”

Saputo‘s Vitalite makes move into vegan cheese

Vitalite, the UK brand that was part of the Dairy Crest business acquired by Canada’s Saputo earlier this year, is to add vegan cheese to its portfolio.

Saputo Dairy UK, the now renamed Dairy Crest, said dairy-free products were no longer only being bought by those with intolerances and allergies, adding: “Most of the growth is coming from people who believe that free-from options are key to a healthy lifestyle.”

Citing data from IRI, Saputo Dairy UK said sales of dairy-free cheese grew by 25% by value and 27% by volume last year, with the market in the country now worth GBP20.4m (US$25.3m).

Emilie Grundy, senior brand manager at Saputo Dairy UK, said: “Consumers are increasingly switching to free-from diets and one of the foods they miss most when they go dairy free is cheese.

The Vitalite Dairy Free Cheese Alternatives are on sale exclusively at UK grocer Asda, in block and sliced formats.

Strauss Group’s chocolate “first”

Israel-based Strauss Group is rolling out what it says a low-sugar chocolate “first”.

Strauss says it has reduced the sugar in its milk chocolate by 30% without using “artificial” sugar substitutes.

The company said the sugar in the chocolate has been replaced by “two main components”: dietary fiber and ground tiger nut flour. Strauss said the recipe creates a “sweet taste while preserving the chocolate’s creamy texture”.

It is the use of the tiger nut tuber as a “natural source of sweetness” that Strauss is claiming as a market first, a spokesperson said.

“It is sold only in Israel currently,” the spokesperson added. “Our confectionery sales are in Israel only at this point except for some very small-scale sales to kosher shops in Europe and North America.”

Nestlé debuts meat-free pizza through Garden Gourmet brand

Nestlé is expanding its Garden Gourmet plant-based brand into pizza, initially launching in Germany.

In conjunction with pizza maker Original Wagner, it has developed three new deep-frozen pizza varieties, two vegetarian and one vegan variant – Hummus Lovers, Protein Lovers and Veggie Lovers, respectively.

The Veggie Lovers pizza is made of a dough with carrots and chia seeds and is covered with tomato, green asparagus, grilled courgette, broccoli, corn, semi-dried tomatoes and a cauliflower sauce.

The product range will initially be available from German supermarket chain Rewe with a RRP of EUR3.99 (US$4.35).

Garden Gourmet was founded in Israel in 1986 and bought by Nestlé in 2017.

Sainsbury’s replaces Basics range with 13 new brands

UK big four grocer Sainsbury’s is scrapping its entry point Basics range, which includes food products, in favour of 13 new brands.

It has already started the process and said it is 60% of the way through switching products over to brands including J. James. Around 120 new SKUs are in its shops already with the retailer saying the project will be complete by the end of the year when the new SKU count will be more than 200.

Sainsbury’s commercial director, food, Paul Mills-Hicks, said: “We have looked to re-launch our entry point.”

He said the retailer had done a lot of work on the new brands’ identity “in terms of look and feel and also in terms of their brand proposition”.

Cereal Partners Worldwide rolls out “gut-friendly” GoodBelly Cereal

Cereal Partners Worldwide, a joint venture between global food giants Nestlé and General Mills, is launching a “gut-friendly” breakfast cereal in the UK.

GoodBelly Cereal is described as high in oat fibre with Bifidobacterium Lactis live cultures.

The cereal comes in two flavours: Wholegrain Oat Flakes with Apple, Cranberry & Pumpkin Seeds; and Wholegrain Oat Flakes with Blueberry, Banana, Pumpkin Seeds and a dash of Ginger. They have no artificial colours, flavours or sweeteners. 

Toby Baker, the regional marketing director for CPW, said: “As part of our ongoing commitment to making breakfast better, we’re excited to provide a breakfast cereal that helps get consumers on the path to a ‘healthy gut’ – as we believe when your tummy feels good, all else follows. With a team of nutrition and food science experts behind us, we created GoodBelly Cereal which is high in oat fibre.”

The initial launch is in Tesco but the cereal will be made available to other major retailers next year. GoodBelly Cereal carries a recommended retail price of GBP3.49 (US$4.30) for a 350-gram box.

Don Lee Farms Better Than Beef adds to plant-based burger range

Don Lee Farms, a family-run, US-headquartered food firm, is rolling out another plant-based burger – Better Than Beef.

Located in California and founded in 1982, Don Lee Farms said the Better Than Beef burger follows the launch of its organic plant-based burger, which it claims was the “first organic burger of its kind”.

Better Than Beef will be available at select Costco stores, starting with Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah and Washington, and supermarket chain HEB in Texas. It will also be stocked by “national retailers”.

Danny Goodman, the company’s president, said: “Our new Better Than Beef Burger delivers on the experience and satisfaction of beef’s aroma, texture, flavour and juiciness with the lowest calories, fat and saturated fat on the market. We can’t wait to get this burger in more hands as we expand our brand into retail markets.”