CONSUMERS today, more than ever, want "adventure" in food flavors and the "ultimate" in taste experiences, according to Kraft Foods Group Inc., which reported that the company "has revved up" its innovation pipeline to introduce 40 new foods and beverages.
Each new product has been developed to satisfy consumer demand for bold flavors, convenience and customization, the company said.
"Bland and boring don't cut it today," said Barry Calpino, Kraft vice president for breakthrough innovation.
Consumers are in "an all-out quest for adventure, fun and passion in food and beverages in a multitude of flavors," whether inspired by farmers markets, local street food vendors, restaurants or ethnic or global cuisine, he said.
Some of the new products are being debuted now, and others will be introduced over the next several weeks, according to the announcement.
They represent the company's first new product wave since Kraft was established when Kraft Foods Inc. divided itself into an international confectionary and beverages company and Kraft Foods Group, a North American foodservice and grocery supplier (Feedstuffs, Oct. 8).
Calpino said bacon will continue to sizzle, and peppers will take center stage in 2013.
The company's cheese lines, for instance, are introducing Kraft Cracked Black Pepper string cheese and Philadelphia Spicy Jalapeno cream cheese; Kraft dressings are adding a zesty vinaigrette for salads or as a marinade for meats and seafood, and Oscar Mayer is bringing out bacon- and jalapeno-flavored bolognas.
Planters is rolling out a cherry/chocolate-flavored peanut butter.
The new products will also provide consumers with customization options such as new Kraft Fresh Take breadcrumb and cheese mixes for chicken, fish and pork in smoky mesquite and spicy chipotle flavors.
These new products demonstrate that "an innovative spirit is taking hold at Kraft" to appeal to both customers and consumers, Calpino said.
Kraft, headquartered in Northfield, Ill., is expected to report first-year revenues totaling $19.0 billion.