“Snacking has been a bad word for good reason,” Kolewe explained to FoodNavigator-USA. “Snacks are low in nutrition, and they tend to be high in plastic. So, what we've done is we've looked at nature, look at how food evolved to be in a nature, the berry form of fruit, which literally evolved to be eaten, which is that protective, edible outer coating.”
Kolewe continued, “It's based on the same type of design that we find in nature. We looked at what's inside of an apple skin, or what's inside of an orange peel, and take some of the same components—fibers, seaweed fibers, mushroom fibers—and we've put them together in the same way that we find these structures that you find in nature.”
Driven by a better-for-you-and-planet motto, Foodberry’s snacks use edible coatings made from plant fibers that can encompass any food, from ice cream and yogurt to hummus or cheese. During the show, the brand featured its line of frozen novelties (similar in appearance as mochi) in peanut butter and brownie flavor, as well as its Trailberries in Peach Mango + Almond Butter, Strawberry Raspberry + Peanut Butter flavors.
“Think about something like yogurt, right? Yogurt, everybody knows is a healthy food. But you've got to get a plastic container for yogurt. You might have some fruit at the bottom that you mix up. Well what we can do is we can take that yogurt, and now we can wrap it with the fruit. And we can package it in something that's totally compostable and biodegradable,” Kolewe elaborated.
Serving both form and function, Foodberry’s platform creates an opportunity to incorporate novel ingredients with nutritious attributes in a convenient format. Kolewe mentioned that the platform is great for fresh fruit, where consumers have an opportunity to try more fruit varieties in a convenient format: “Using [fruit] as part of our platform is something that consumers like. So even with fruits like mangoes, or more exotic fruits like dragon fruit or papayas that people maybe not get to try directly, we can offer a convenient proposition [which] is something that we’re finding that consumers and brand are both really interested in,” he explained.
Building retail partnerships in the snackable dessert and fruit space
The brand partnered with dairy-free ice cream brand NadaMoo! to create its Frozen Snack Bites using Foodberry’s plant-based coatings. The snackable desserts are available in 1,000 stores and Kolewe added that the company is currently “working with a few other partners as an innovation provider to merchandise under other brands.
In New York, Foodberry’s partnership with Keji Market features scoopable fruit bites that are encompassed with the fruit coating, creating new flavor combinations in a convenient format.
“It’s fresh fruit, a scoop of mango and pineapple, put our coating around it so now we turn it into pineapple berry. So it lasts for longer and takes a lot of the preparation work from the consumer so now you don’t have to cut up a pineapple.”