In an increasingly health-conscious society, consumers are searching for tasty but nutritious snacks as a way of satisfying their need for indulgence, while maintaining a positive diet.
Podberry, marketed as the UK’s first freeze-dried, pea-seasoned snack product, believes it is “filling the gap” for a snack that meets these credentials as well as being “aesthetically appealing and delicious.”
Each pack of Podberry – currently available for online order in England – includes 4.6g of protein and 2.2g of fibre. It has also secured a deal with Morrisons to stock its range in 28 of the supermarket’s stores in Scotland.
“[Our products] are grown, harvested and freeze-dried by our farm in Scotland,” Geoff Bruce, Podberry director, tells Food Spark. “The peas are harvested and frozen within 150 minutes to ensure that all the nutritional goodness of the peas are retained. After this, the peas are freeze-dried on our farm in Perthshire.”
Initially launched with sweet chilli and sea salt and balsamic vinegar flavours, the brand recently doubled its range with the release of two new SKUs: parmesan & truffle and ham hock.
“When considering flavours for Podberry there were a lot of different things we felt it was important to explore,” says Bruce. “With the first two flavours introduced we wanted to use familiar flavour profiles so people would be encouraged to take the risk and try our product.
“In progression from this, and with the positive feedback from our initial launch behind us, with our second two flavours we wanted to do something a little more interesting. Flavours which people may not have tried before and that might ignite curiosity and interest.
“It was also important that these two new flavours maintained the healthy credentials of the original products and were still vegan, gluten-free, high in protein and high in fibre.”
It’s not just about the health side of things
With healthy snacks emerging as a big trend in 2019, is there enough space in the market for so many new brands?
“The snacking market is saturated in certain areas, but in others there is still room for new and exciting brands to compete with those who are more established,” says Bruce.“I think if you offer, as we believe Podberry does, something exciting and different which will support people in making good decisions when it comes to snacking, there is no reason your product won’t be well-received.”
Bruce believes consumers are becoming much more aware of what they eat, and that trend undoubtedly extends into the on-the-go snacking category.
“They are demanding greater health credentials as well as more transparency from producers,” he says. “Health products can no longer be this alone, and consumers do not expect to have to compromise on taste or flavour just because a snack has healthier credentials.”
To tackle this challenge, Podberry relies heavily on consumer feedback to ensure it maintains a balance between a “positive snacking experience” and the benefit of its healthier ingredients and methods.
“For us, one of the more difficult challenges has been research around creating a wholly carbon-neutral product in fully recyclable products,” reveals Bruce. “It is something we believe in and know consumers demand, but has taken longer than we had hoped to achieve. We are still working hard on it though and hope in the not-too-distant future we can tick these vital boxes too.”
And, speaking of the not-too-distant-future, Bruce hopes to see Podberry expand and evolve in keeping with demand.
“We have the potential to diversify our freeze-dried snacks with different products as well as potentially introducing new flavours,” he says. “At the moment, though, the key for us is securing listings for our original four flavours so that more people, both across the UK and overseas, can experience the brand and our unique snacking option.”