Previewed at this month’s Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco, new flavor A Nacho Above (srp $3.49) has launched into Whole Foods and will soon be rolling out to Sprouts Farmers Markets.
“Nacho is a very well-known and loved flavor, so creating a better-for-you version that meets our high standards took some work,” said Way Better Snacks CEO Jim Breen, adding it was the first everyday flavor to be added to the tortilla chip range since March 2014.
“This new chip contains our sprouted ingredients (chia, flax seed and quinoa), organic cheddar cheese, and a blend of herbs and spices including onion, garlic, paprika, sea salt, black and red pepper,” he said.
Balancing flavor and nutrition
Breen added Way Better Snacks was founded on the notion better-tasting snacks could be made with better ingredients. However, balancing taste and nutrition can be challenging, he said. “We source only the most premium, quality ingredients, we craft our flavors from real, non-GMO ingredients and 100% whole grains, and we never use anything artificial”
Way Better Snacks had performed well in retailers such as Target, Whole Foods, Kroger and Stop & Shop, said Breen, and are also sold in most major retailers in Canada and a number of European countries.
Breen added that the business would consider targeting the convenience channel, with c-stores increasingly looking for better-for-you products.
“C-stores are a consideration for Way Better Snacks in the future as well as club channel and mass merchants with progressive customers that are seeking better-for-you snacking options,” he said.
Sprouted grain growth
And he predicted big growth in sprouted grain snacks: “Many established snack companies are starting to incorporate these nutrient-packed grains, beans and seeds to create better-for-you snacks.”
Mintel reported the number of new product launches with sprouted grains was only 19 in 2014, but the number is growing fast.
Food and nutrition expert Julian Mellentin last year told Food Navigator that the niche market for sprouted ingredients is going to increase eight-fold in the next few years.
“We’re excited to see the sprouting trend catching on,” Breen said. “In the new year, we’re focused on continuing to drive future growth through adoption and expansion of sprouted ingredients.”