StarKist has been targeting millennials with new flavor mixes of its tuna, offered in a pouch rather than a can, according to an article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Pouches work better than cans for an always-on-the-go generation, Choe said. Since the pouches were introduced, he said sales have increased about 10% each year.
The company's aim is to move beyond tuna to be a “meal producer” – built around salmon, sardines and other items, President and CEO Andrew Choe told the newspaper.
Millennials, the “it's all about me” generation, has caused the ground — or sea — to shift beneath Starkist, a Pittsburgh-based company owned by entities within a rocket's range of Pyongyang.
Already one of the world's leading tuna-oriented companies, Starkist is aiming to capture younger consumers by moving toward developing other sea specialties as sardines and other easy-to-contain-in-pouches items.
Pouches? Not cans? The millennials' world just keeps making amazing advances: Going from packaging in something that's recyclable (metal) to something that isn't (plastic).
Packaging that emphasizes convenience attracts consumers, who are looking for easy ways to enjoy food on the go. Most of Nielsen's top food trends of 2016 were products that are easier for people to grab and eat whenever they want. And last year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said that half of peoples' food budgets went toward foods that were easy to prepare and eat.
Despite the popularity of convenient packaging, the environmental footprint of plastic pouches moves in directions the world can ill afford to go. Pouches are convenient, but they are not recyclable and can create more waste. Millennials seem to be more eco-conscious than generations before, but this packaging format forces the value of convenience to supercede that of sustainability. Maybe StarKist could work on more eco-friendly pouches — or a recycling program to turn finished ones into nets or other items needed for the fishing trade.