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 some leftovers pulled from our inboxes.
Kellogg brings a popular frozen treat to breakfast
CPG food giant Kellogg is tapping a convenience store and fast food favorite for its latest product, and giving consumers a surprise in the process.
The cereal giant announced it is collaborating with J&J Snack Foods on Icee Cereal. Inspired by the beverage’s cherry and blue raspberry flavors, Kellogg claims the product provides a sensation that cools a person’s mouth when consumed, evoking the refreshing sip of an Icee.
The launch aims to stoke nostalgia among adults who have fond memories of the slushie, Natalie Peterson, The Icee Company’s vice president of marketing, said in a statement.
"Consumers today say they want to feel like a kid again, and there's no better way to 'Let the Kid Out' than digging into a bowl of ICEE branded cereal," Peterson said.
The launch is the most recent recent Kellogg cereal to add the novelty of letting consumers feel a literal chill when they’re eating it. Last year, it debuted an offering inspired by the holiday franchise Elf on the Shelf that also featured a cooling sensation upon tasting it, according to the company.
Kellogg has used snacks and desserts to inspire new cereals in the past. It has featured its Pop-Tarts brand in two cereal products, in the past And it has collaborated with dessert maker McKee on a series of cereals inspired by its Little Debbie products, including a Swiss Rolls cereal which debuted last month.
Icee first debuted its products in 1967 before it was acquired by J&J in 1987. Most retailers carry its Cherry, Blue Raspberry and Cola flavors, but the frozen beverage has 42 in total — including Blood Orange, Bubble Gum and Sour Apple.
— Chris Casey
Boston Beer signs up for Slingers Signature Cocktails
Boston Beer is hoping consumers will want to sign up for its newest launch.
The alcohol maker, best known for brands such as Samuel Adams, Truly Hard Seltzer and Twisted Tea, is launching Slingers Signature Cocktails. The malt-based beverage, with 8% alcohol by volume, initially comes in three recognizable flavors: Bahama Mama, Peach Screwdriver and Pineapple Punch.
Slingers is debuting this month in Cleveland, Pittsburgh and select areas of New Hampshire. The test and launch, Boston Beer said, will allow the company to participate in trendy areas while gathering feedback from consumers before it decides whether to expand distribution more broadly.
"With its strong points of difference, relatable brand ethos and malt-based recipe, we really feel like we've got a winner in Slingers," Andrea Desaulniers, manager of innovation at Boston Beer, said in a statement. "And the brand's physical attributes – a convenient, single-serve package with a higher-than-average ABV and eye-catching graphics – make it especially suited for the convenience store class-of-trade. So, we're doubling down and stacking our chips there!"
The global ready to drink cocktails market size was estimated at $782.8 million in 2021, according to data from Grand View Research. It’s expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 13.4% from 2022 to 2030 due to premiumization of flavors, taste, quality and package design, the data showed.
Boston Beer, which has been hit especially hard by the slowdown in demand for hard seltzer, has been expanding into other categories in recent years. It entered the whiskey space with the introduction of Twisted Tea Sweet Tea Whiskey through its partnership with Beam Suntory, and worked with PepsiCo on Hard Mtn Dew.
It's also rolled out new innovations like Bevy, a beverage inspired by Finland’s long drink, and cannabis-infused iced teas in Canada.
— Christopher Doering
Stuffed Puffs scoop into ice cream
This spring, Stuffed Puffs are hitting the freezer aisle.
Wells Enterprises-owned Blue Bunny is partnering with Stuffed Puffs Filled Marshmallows for a line of frozen dessert treats. An ice cream sandwich collaboration follows in May.
The Stuffed Puffed Scoopables mix Blue Bunny frozen dessert with the signature sweet-filled marshmallows and will be sold exclusively at Walmart. The frozen treats come in flavors including Birthday Cake, S’mores and Cookies N’ Creme flavors. The ice cream sandwiches, built between a pair of graham cracker-like cookies, will be at a variety of grocery stores and in S’mores and Salted Caramel S’mores flavors.
“[T]he playful indulgence of our frozen treats combined with their mission to promote more fun-filled lives is a match made in confectionery heaven," Blue Bunny Marketing Director Jeremy Hrynewycz said in a written statement.
Stuffed Puffs have quickly gone from grocery store startup to snack aisle icon in just a few years. The treat launched in late 2019 as a chocolate-filled marshmallow, and was positioned as a product that could make the perfect microwave s’more.
In the last few years, the brand has done that and s’more, adding flavors including Cookies N’ Creme, a Cinnamon Toast Crunch variety and snackable coated and filled Big Bites.
Marshmallow and s’mores flavors already exist in the ice cream aisle, but Stuffed Puffs treats push the marshmallow flavoring forward. Many marshmallow flavored ice creams feature a bit of marshmallow creme swirled into flavors such as chocolate and vanilla. For the S’mores and Cookies N’ Creme flavors, the ice cream itself is actually marshmallow flavored — and also features marshmallow swirls.
Stuffed Puffs are the latest CPG treat to partner with an ice cream brand. In recent years, consumers have enjoyed frozen versions of candy bars including Twix and Snickers, Little Debbie snacks and even Kraft Macaroni & Cheese.
The marshmallow flavor of Stuffed Puffs certainly has potential to become a freezer aisle success. According to statistics reported by the National Confectioners Association, Americans buy more than 90 million pounds of marshmallows a year. About half of those sold in summer are eventually toasted over fires, the group said, so these treats will give consumers a chance to enjoy those flavors on ice.
— Megan Poinski