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.
Heinz’s new ketchup is a big dill
In keeping with its aim to surprise consumers with new and novel products, Kraft Heinz has announced the latest flavor of its most popular condiment, Pickle Ketchup.
The product combines the flavor of ketchup with the tangy taste of pickles, which have long joined the condiment in burgers and hot dogs, Kraft Heinz said in a statement. Pickle Ketchup will be available nationwide starting in January.
According to the condiments maker, the flavor was spurred by a rising interest in pickles among consumers, with 73% of Americans saying they enjoy the cucumber-based food’s taste based on a recent Datassential report. Kraft Heinz also pointed to a Yelp report showing searches for pickle-flavored foods are up 55% this year.
“The current pickle craze in America mirrors the irrational love HEINZ fans have for the brand, so it only made sense for our newest ketchup to blend these two beloved tastes together,” Katie Peterson, Kraft Heinz’s director of innovation, said in a statement.
The CPG giant also lays a claim to pickles thanks to its founder, Henry J. Heinz, who died in 1919. He earned the nickname “Pickle King” for owning the largest U.S. pickle company in the early 1900s, according to the press release.
The pickle-flavored item follows a lineup of spicy ketchup flavors the company launched earlier this year. It included Chipotle for a medium spice, Jalapeno for a hot spice and Habanero for an extra hot spice. The company told Food Dive in April the launch was part of an effort to drive growth as the hot sauce market has seen greater profits in recent years.
Long a deli staple, dill pickles are growing in prominence as a flavor category for food products launched by CPGs. McCormick & Company’s popular hot sauce brand Frank’s Red Hot debuted a pickle flavor earlier this year, while Conagra Brands unveiled Vlasic pickles flavored with Frank’s this fall. And in March, Clorox’s Hidden Valley debuted a Pickle Ranch variety.
— Chris Casey
Elf on the Shelf unwraps ice cream for the holidays
With the annual visit from the Elf of the Shelf coming in just a few weeks, the seasonal creature could bring with it a chilly surprise this year.
It’s partnering with The Frozen Farmer to introduce the first ever Elf on the Shelf Santa’s Cookies Ice Cream and Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches. The vanilla ice cream is loaded with red and green sugar cookie crumbles, while the ice cream sandwiches contain red and green sugar cookie ice cream nestled between two sugar-sprinkled sugar cookies.
The treat is available only at Kroger, with pints and ice cream sandwiches available at nearly 2,100 stores across the country.
“Christmas is a very magical time in our home and we wanted to bring that magic to households across America with a new holiday tradition inspired by Santa’s favorite treat,” Katey Evans, founder of The Frozen Farmer, said in a statement. “Why settle for leaving Santa just cookies when you can leave him the perfect combination of ice cream and cookies all in one?”
The Elf on the Shelf, a franchise that started as a children’s book 18 years ago, has grown into one of the top three recognized Christmas characters in the country in just two decades. More than 22.9 million elves, pets and mates from the company have been adopted worldwide, according to The Lumistella Company, home to the holiday creature.
For food brands looking to boost sales and stand out in a crowded marketplace during the holiday season, it makes sense for them to tap into the equity of one of the season’s most popular brands.
Cereal giant WK Kellogg has released Elf on the Shelf Hot Cocoa, Snow Creame and Sugar Cookie cereals, as well as a range of snacks.
And just last week, Pillsbury, which is owned by the Chicago-based Hometown Food, announced it was introducing three limited-edition Funfetti Elf on the Shelf Cookie Mixes.
"Knowing cookie mix sales spike across November and December, as families come together to celebrate the holidays, it was only natural to combine the enchantment of everyone's favorite mischievous Scout Elf with the delightful taste and fun of Funfetti,” said Dan Anglemyer, said chief operating officer at Hometown Food Company.
— Christopher Doering
Primal Kitchen celebrates leftovers with cranberry mayo
One thing better than Thanksgiving dinner may be the leftover sandwich the next day. Starting with a base of the holiday’s classics, consumers have enjoyed making each sandwich their own for years.
Touted as “leftovers’ best friend,” Primal Kitchen is tapping into the craze with its Holiday Edition Cranberry Mayo. The product features the company’s classic mayonnaise recipe as a base — avocado oil, organic eggs, vinegar, egg yolks and jicama juice concentrate — and gets is cranberry twist with cranberry powder, rosemary extract and other natural flavors.
The new product is available online at Thrive Market, Sprouts Farmers Market, select Target locations, and direct to consumers on Primal Kitchen’s website.
Primal Kitchen has been recreating American classics in a better-for-you way since it was founded by Mark Sisson, a media personality and ex-endurance athlete in 2015. Co-founder Morgan Buehler guided the company through its $200 million sale to Kraft Heinz in 2019.
The food brand makes products, mostly condiments, dressings and sauces, with better-for-you ingredients that are all organic and kosher.
Primal Kitchen joined Kraft Heinz under Springboard, which is Kraft Heinz’s dynamic platform created to partner with founders and brands that will disrupt the food industry.
The company has also spread its holiday cheer to its Collagen Drink Mix line with a new limited edition snickerdoodle flavor made with creamy coconut milk powder and vanilla extract.
— Elizabeth Flood