- General Mills, Inc. has released Nature Valley Granola Cups, a new snack the company developed in response to rising consumer interest in snacks with multiple textures, according to Food Business News.
- Roy Bechtold, a senior scientist for the company, wrote in the company's Taste of General Mills blog that people are interested in dual or multiple textures like the ones found in the new product, which combines creamy nut butter, crunchy whole grain oats and nuts.
- Nature Valley Granola Cups’s development took approximately a year and a half to go from idea to store.
Last year, 15% of new food products that were launched in Europe had some sort of unique texture combination, according to a study by Mintel. Food manufacturing insiders also said that in the U.S., there were quite a number of texture-heavy launches.
This trend has been developing for some time. In fact, IRI’s 2013 New Product Pacesetters Report showed that both consumers and product developers focused heavily on texture as far back as 2012, with more than 27% of the top selling U.S. foods and beverages launched that year having some sort of textures claim.
Ingredion published a report that showed how food and beverage manufacturers are developing fresh concepts that appeal to an evolving base of consumers, with texture being a major trend.
Food analysts note that there’s been a rise in texture analysis throughout the food industry, infiltrating everything from dairies to meat processing plants to bakeries. It's possible that consumers associate complex textures with higher-quality, healthy ingredients, an off-shoot of consumer desire for premium products.