Leftovers is our look at a few of the product ideas popping up everywhere — some are intriguing, some sound amazing and some are the kinds of ideas we would never dream of. We can't write about everything that we get pitched, so here are the leftovers pulled from our inboxes.
Orange you glad about this new Dorito bag?
While most packaging innovations focus on things like sustainability or freshness, Strauss Frito Lay has introduced one to the market to help consumers with a real problem: Dorito fingers.
The Israel-based joint venture with PepsiCo's snacking division has introduced a bag for the bright orange chips made out of a terry cloth towel. Consumers can put a bag of Doritos inside the towel bag, munch on the chips, then wipe their hands on the bag to avoid leaving greasy orange dust on everything they touch. The bag is reusable and machine washable — making it de facto sustainable packaging.
So far, the towel bag has been popular with gamers. It's not yet widely available, and there's no word on whether it will be coming to the U.S. market.
The tag line of the towel bag campaign is, "Even the most minor problems deserve brilliant solutions." It's hard to disagree with that, especially because this is a problem — unlike the loud crunching and chip crumbles that the company was reportedly attempting to solve with a line of snacks "for her." But at least this new sustainable package is an improvement on the company's infamous biodegradable Sun Chips bag, which launched in 2010, but was noisy enough to be compared to a lawnmower or a jet engine.
— Megan Poinski
Oat my! New dairy-free ice cream
Oat milk is branching out into the frozen aisle for the first time.
Danone's So Delicious brand is launching a new line of Oatmilk Frozen Desserts, according to a release. The company said that the dessert uses oat milk as its base and combines it with other ingredients to add flavor. The oat milk ice creams will come in three flavors: Peanut Butter & Raspberry, Oatmeal Cookie and Caramel Apple Crumble.
The launch of this ice cream coincides with the rapid growth of the alternative dairy segment, and more specifically the oat milk category. The plant-based beverage market is expected to grow to more than $19.67 billion by 2023, according to research from Markets and Markets. Danone has shown interest in growing this part if its portfolio, recently launching Oat Yeah, an oat-based milk alternative.
These new desserts could especially appeal to consumers looking for the increasingly popular free-from trend, since they are dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan and non-GMO. But there is competition in the vegan and dairy-free ice cream space, most of which are made from coconut and almond milk. Competitors include big names like Ben & Jerry's, Häagen-Dazs and Halo Top.
But these are the first to be made from oat milk, which is the hyper-trendy milk alternative of the moment. Given its the recent success in other categories, it could be a hit.
— Lillianna Byington
Breakfast of (children) champions
This company wants to make breakfast a breeze for parents.
Kidfresh, the frozen food brand made for children, will be launching into the breakfast segment in April, according to Food Navigator. The company will be rolling out frozen waffles and breakfast burritos, and each will include vegetables like sweet potato and butternut squash.
The company's frozen kids meals are currently located in more than 10,000 stores across the country. With hidden vegetables and the speed of frozen food in the morning, the company is looking to appeal to parents with these new products who are trying to quickly get their kids a nutritional breakfast meal.
The new products will be funded by previous investors Monogram Capital Partners, Emil Capital Partners and AccelFoods. Kidfresh scored a $10 million round of funding from these investors in 2017.
Sales of frozen foods increased this past year and volume grew for the first time in five years, which may help the new frozen breakfast food gain momentum after launch. Even with that growth, Kidfresh outpaced the U.S. frozen food category in the last year, according to IRI data cited by Food Navigator.
The market for frozen breakfast food is large, but there aren't many products marketed specifically to children. Kidfresh will be looking to take advantage of that largely untapped target audience to boost its new product line.
— Lillianna Byington