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Article | December 3, 2008
Pouch provides at-home meal prep
A confluence of food and beverage product and packaging trends are represented with the introduction of new Salad Finishers™ and Potato Finishers™ from Sargento Foods, Inc., Plymouth, WI.
Offered in glossy, brightly printed bottom-gusseted stand-up pouches, the two products take advantage of flexible film’s aesthetic, functional, and sustainable benefits, while meeting the consumer’s desire for healthy and convenient at-home meal preparation. The products also capitalize on the increased sales of produce over the past two years: According to Sargento, produce sales in the U.S. have grown nearly 20 percent, with lettuce and potatoes making up nearly 40% of annual vegetable sales. The Finishers product lines include five salad and three potato varieties that consist of different combinations of toppings that can be added to a plain salad or potato to create a main entrée. Ingredients—there are three in each variety—are individually packed in clear film pouches for freshness. The outer flexible-film pouch, which Sargento senior marketing manager Troy Davis says “complements the packages of bagged salad greens in produce,” holds the pouched toppings. At retail, bags are displayed upright in a push-tray and are merchandised in the refrigerated produce section. (Davis could not provide details on the construction of the stand-up pouch or its supplier.) According to an article by Doris Hajewski in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “Sargento has high hopes for the new Finishers lines, which they see as a growth vehicle at a time when consumers are cutting back on restaurant meals.” Relates Davis, “Our primary target is a group we call ‘food adventurers.’ They like to create fresh, new ways to enjoy food, and the ability to customize is important to them. Finishers are an affordable way to enjoy a restaurant-quality salad or potato dish at home.” Each stand-up pouch contains enough ingredients for two to four salads or potatoes, package copy informs. Davis notes that the pouch debuted with a press-to-close feature that is now being discontinued. “Consumers told us that the entire contents are generally used at one meal, so resealing is not necessary,” he says. The cost per product ranges from $2.99 to $3.49 for varieties without chicken and from $3.69 to $3.99 for the three Salad Finishers that include chicken.
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