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The Best New Products Worthy of Retailer, Consumer Attention

2022 Editors’ Picks program unearthed grocery products that excel in innovation, functionality, value and packaging design

Every year, Progressive Grocer’s editorial staffers convene to review the hundreds of products sent to us for consideration in our Editors’ Picks program. Although our legendary marathon sampling sessions are now a thing of the past — thanks not only to a worldwide pandemic, but also to a geographically far-flung staff that would make scheduling such an in-person event a logistical headache — we still take our duties as product reviewers seriously.

To that end, we carefully peruse the submissions and evaluate the described products according to innovation, functionality, value and packaging design. As happens every year, we encountered plenty of wonderful items released in the past 12 months, with the daunting task of choosing those products that we feel excel in these areas. The below 82 products, selected from more than 200 submissions, are those that checked all of the boxes for us.

[Read more: "Birdie & Louie: An Innovative New Entrant in the Pet Food Category"]

As far as trends go, plant-based and other items positioned as better for you are still going strong, with a particular emphasis on healthy indulgence, since shoppers are increasingly unwilling to sacrifice taste for nutrition. Private label also made a respectable showing once more, with several products being the first own-brand entry in a particular segment, offering comparable quality to their name-brand counterparts, but at a value price. Additional attributes to arise often among the successful entries were clean-label, low-carb/keto, organic, natural and sustainable, this last descriptor a bid to appeal to consumers’ growing desire to improve the state of the planet along with their bodily health.

While not every submission becomes an Editors’ Pick, we are still grateful to all who sent in their products and enabled us to become better acquainted with the wide range of great items available at grocery — many of which we can’t wait to seek out on store shelves. After all, we’re not just editors, but also dedicated grocery shoppers, an all-consuming pastime — or is it a calling? — that we suspect is shared by many of our readers, too.

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AeroFarms Micro Broccoli

SRP: $3.99 per 2-ounce container

Small in size and big on nutrients, this type of microgreen is especially rich in the antioxidant sulforaphane. It’s grown in only a few days at an indoor year-round vertical farm using proprietary aeroponic technology for 95% less water and 99% less land use than conventional broccoli, and with zero pesticides, herbicides or fungicides. Offering a mellow, nutty flavor and a tender eating experience, these broccoli microgreens can be added to sandwiches, wraps, soups, salads and more. AeroFarms Micro Broccoli is sold in a color-coded container with a peel-and-seal lid and a bottom tray made from 100% post-consumer recycled plastic. With a 14-day shelf life, the product is available at such stores as Whole Foods Market, Stop & Shop, and Walmart. 

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Agua Plus

SRP: $1.65 per 16.9-fluid-ounce bottle

Clearing up any confusion about who’s drinking a water bottle at a given time, Plus Brand Industries uses a unique All-Scratch technology — at least two years in the making — to allow a user to etch their name, initials or a picture on that label to identify it as theirs. This helps cut down on product waste while also appealing to consumers buying multipacks for occasions and household use. The water itself is alkaline, and the Agua Plus bottles are packaged in a sleek display box with a window cutout and a perforated top for easy access. The launch of the bottled water set the stage for the use of the company’s All-Scratch technology on other beverage packages, including Agua Plus functional and flavored drinks. 

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Bitchin’ Sauce Avocado Serrano Dip

SRP: $5.99 per 8-ounce tub

If avocados are a hot commodity, then this item brings a new kind of heat to the market. For one thing, it’s made with on-trend avocados, serrano peppers and spices in a California almond base. It also ticks a lot of marketplace demand boxes as a snack that’s vegan, gluten-free, keto-friendly, non-GMO, kosher and packaged using high-pressure processing that increases shelf life without adding preservatives. The product has some storytelling cachet, too, as it made its debut at a farmers market in San Diego and went on to innovate in the new nut-based dip segment at retail. In-store demos and shout-outs from celebrity fans like Kylie Jenner, Ruby Rose and Heidi Montag have boosted interest in the product, which can be used as a dip, spread or topping. 

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Babybel Plant-Based

SRP: $5.39 per 6-count pack

As shoppers branch out into more plant-based foods, traditional brands are doing the same. Among them is Bel Brands USA, known for its original Babybel snacking cheese wrapped in signature red wax. The company rolled out a plant-based version of that snacking cheese in February 2022 — complete with green wax — after creating a smooth and creamy texture similar to dairy-based mozzarella. Designed to appeal to flexitarians and vegans alike, Babybel Plant-Based is garnering positive feedback from alt-cheese lovers who have discovered the product and heard about it from the brand’s social media influencer partners and from early retailers, among them Costco, Sam’s Club and Whole Foods Market. In fact, Bel Brands reports that Plant-Based has become one of its top three varieties. 

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Birdie & Louie Wet Pet Food

SRP: $1.49per 3-ounce can

Even before the pandemic spurred a spike in pet adoptions and rescues, demand for premium pet food was on the rise. Made with premium tuna sourced from the “tuna capital of the world,” in Ecuador, and infused with superfoods in a grain-free formula, this cat food reflects just how discerning cat parents have become. Varieties — billed as entrées — are Premium Tuna and Papaya, said to prevent hairballs; Tuna and Pineapple, formulated to promote healthy digestion; and Tuna and Olives, created to produce a catnip-like effect. The vibrant packaging stands out on shelf, signaling its differentiation from standard feline food. Look for the Birdie & Louie brand to expand to wet dog food and eventually into pet treats, stain removers and other products, as parent company Worthy Promotional Products is in growth mode.

Editors' Picks 22

Blackhawk Originals Choice Multi-Brand Cards

SRP: $25 to $500 denominations 

As shoppers have shown a penchant for customization, they can also do their own thing with gift cards, thanks to an offering from Blackhawk Network. Choice Multi-Brand Cards allow users to redeem however they want and to split their purchase between brands. The timing was right for this introduction, given consumers’ changing gift-giving and -buying habits over the past couple of years. The cards were rolled out during a high-volume gift-giving season, supported by a campaign that included 520 promotional events and partnerships with influencers on TikTok and Instagram. This personal touch was appreciated, as the platform drove 150% growth in sales for participating partners, and the cards are now available at more than 38,000 locations and across nine digital partner sites in the United States. 

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Boba Bam

SRP: $7.99 per 9.2-ounce 4-pack

Boba is big in beverages right now, especially in the foodservice arena. Boba Bam aims to bring the boba experience home with an authentic Taiwanese boba kit for DIY drinks that are both budget-friendly and convenient. The kit includes an innovative frozen packet of boba pearls and flavored syrup, accompanied by microwave cooking instructions to ensure a consistent drinking experience. Initially available in Brown Sugar, the company is introducing Black Tea, Coffee, Matcha, Strawberry and Taro flavors. Boba Bam can be added to a variety of beverages, including milk, milk alternatives, tea, coffee and even spirits. The clean-label product appeals to the better-for-you crowd, since it’s gluten- and nut-free, kosher, and halal certified. Boba Bam is enjoying breakout success, with more than 25 million drinks sold in the first year of production, according to the company.  

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Broccoli Sandwich Thins

SRP: $7.99 per 6.75-ounce bag

Introduced around the first of the year — right in time for New Year’s resolutions — this vegetable bread is made with fresh broccoli, whole cage-free eggs, aged parmesan cheese and pure nutritional yeast. It provides one full serving of vegetables per piece and is gluten- and grain-free and keto certified. Enjoyed as an alternative to traditional bread, buns or rolls, the unique product can also be merchandised as a fresh vegetable in the refrigerated area of a store; the colorful green packaging makes it stand out on shelf.  Rolled out with targeted email and influencer campaigns, Broccoli Sandwich Thins are available at such banners as Sprouts Farmers Market, Harris Teeter and ShopRite. The item has shown staying power, too, and is now one of the manufacturer’s top three products.

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Brave Good Kind Tender Chicken Bars

SRP: $2.99 per 0.8-ounce bar

The meat snack category, still on a roll as high-protein diets remain popular, welcomes a lot of new entrants every year. These stood out for a particularly tender eating experience and healthy profile: They’re made from antibiotic-free, vegetarian-fed chicken. The chicken bars have sustainability appeal, too, since they’re derived from a species with a smaller carbon footprint. Brave scored points with female meat snack consumers who are seeking a less-chewy product and an earth-friendlier option, but the items have also resonated with men. First launched in the e-commerce channel, the chicken bars have been continually added to retailers’ inventories and are now available in more than 4,000 stores. According to the company, sales data shows that these unique protein snacks have brought new consumers — i.e., first-time jerky buyers — to the category. 

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Brazi Bites Pizza Bites

SRP: $6.99 per 10-ounce bag

A healthier twist on frozen pizza snacks, these bites from a Latina-founded brand are gluten- and grain-free and made with Brazilian cheese bread. Packaged in colorful resealable bags and shipped using 100% recyclable materials, the bites pack 8 grams of protein per serving and are available in Pepperoni, Three Cheese and Supreme varieties. At a time when people continue to work from home, these snacks are ready in minutes in an air fryer or oven. To get the word out to as broad an audience as possible, the manufacturer deployed email campaigns, social media activities, influencer marketing and sweepstakes. Out of the box, the product launched in 5,000 distribution points during the early part of 2022, and so far, they’ve proved to be a highly incremental addition, Brazi reports. 

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Bud Light NEXT

SRP: $14.99 per 6-pack of 12-fluid-ounce cans

Ten years in the making, Bud Light NEXT is Anheuser-Busch’s first-ever zero-carb beer. It’s a new type of beer brewed for today’s 21-and-over consumers who have long desired a beer that breaks the barriers of a traditional lager and offers the sessionability and stats of a seltzer. The packaging is sleek, innovative and stands out at shelf. The dividing slash that splits the word “NEXT” serves as a window into the world of what’s to come. Anheuser-Busch launched Bud Light NEXT with a Super Bowl commercial during the Big Game this year. Bud Light NEXT was able to capture and promote awareness while driving strong retail programs at launch. Since launch, the brand has brought new fans to the Bud Light family of products and incremental consumers into the category, as well as adding growth to A-B’s share within the core segment. 

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Bumble Bee Protein on the Run

SRP: $2.99 per 3.5-ounce kit

Bumble Bee Protein on the Run Kits offer consumers an elevated snacking experience and a delicious moment to treat themselves with one of three delectable flavors of tuna. Designed to serve as a portable and easy-to-grab lunch or snack, Protein on the Run snack kits are part of the Bumble Bee Prime product line. Protein on the Run kits deliver between 16 and 17 grams of high-quality protein and are packaged in pop-open recyclable boxes that combine convenience with environmental consciousness. The product line offers the first gourmet tuna snack experience on the market. Each kit comes in one of three flavors — Zesty Lemon, Black Pepper or Mild Jalapeño — and features buttery, savory artisanal crackers and a rich, smooth caramel treat to finish. Protein on the Run is stimulating reconsideration in its category by showing how Bumble Bee can meet consumers’ needs for convenience, health and portability — all within premium snack experiences. 

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Califia Farms Zero Sugar Oatmilk

SRP: $4.49 per 1.5-quart bottle

Consumers, especially Gen Zers and Millennials, are eager to test and explore plant-based options that meet their flavor and nutritional needs. Zero Sugar Oatmilk appeals to the 72% of consumers who are choosing to limit or avoid sugar entirely in their diets but love the creaminess of oat milk. Califia Farms Zero Sugar Oatmilk fills this need, offering this growing consumer base a zero-sugar, dairy-free swap for a variety of occasions. the product is an excellent source of calcium and vitamins A and D. Made with gluten-free oats that have gone through a proprietary process to reduce their amount of sugar, the zero-sugar oatmilk is non-GMO Certified, kosher and made without preservatives. Delicious sipped straight from a glass, the product is also a versatile dairy-free alternative for all culinary applications — anything from savory dishes and sweet baked treats to smoothies. 

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Cappello’s Keto/Low-Carb Pizza

SRPs: Keto Pizza Crust, $7.99; topped pizzas, $10.99

Cappello’s, which thoughtfully develops products with flavor and nutritional relevancy in mind, has introduced keto-friendly, low-net-carb pizzas. These pies combine authentic pizza taste and texture with easy cook times and mindful nutrition. The line comes in a “naked” option for re-creating low-carb versions of pizza favorites, or topped versions in Whole Milk Mozzarella and Buffalo Ranch with Roasted Cauliflower varieties. Not only do these pizzas meet the basic nutritional desires of keto enthusiasts, keto diet dabblers, general low-carb seekers and health-conscious consumers, but they also are intentionally crafted for holistic health and nutrition and provide benefits not seen in other keto pizzas on the market, thanks to the incorporation of turnips as a main ingredient. These benefits include being an excellent source of fiber; high in protein, healthy fats and calcium; and a good source of iron, vitamin E and antioxidants. 

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Challenge Butter Snack Spreads

SRP: $3.99 per 6.5-ounce tub    

Challenge Butter Snack Spreads add quick and bold flavor to any dish any time of day. The spreads are made from real butter and nothing artificial. They can be used for spreading, dipping, drizzling, topping, tossing, sautéeing and more. The product is available in three dessert profiles, Chocolate, Vanilla Fudge and Salted Caramel, as well as three seasoned varieties: Buffalo, Everything Seasoned, and Garlic Parmesan and Herb. Consumers can mix and match the spreads with their favorite foods for an outrageously snackable experience. Challenge Butter Snack Spreads has increased consumers’ usage of butter in dayparts, enhancing usage occasions and adding incremental sales to grocery baskets. Additionally, they have appealed to consumers’ growing interest in snacking by making it possible for them to enhance their favorite noshes and meals quickly and easily. 

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Catalina Crunch Keto-Friendly Crunch Mix

SRP: $6.99 per 6-ounce pack

With the same delicious taste and crunch of traditional party mixes, this better-for-you mix features a crunchy blend of nuts, chickpeas, pretzels, cheese crisps and Catalina Crunch Cereal pieces. Keto-Friendly Crunch Mix delivers on the brand’s mission to make healthier foods that are accessible and convenient for a variety of lifestyles, while simultaneously delivering on taste and satisfaction. With the use of innovative and versatile ingredients such as chickpeas, this snack mix delivers a nutrient-dense, satiating crunch. The keto-friendly party mix also includes nuts high in protein and healthy fats, such as cashews, pecans and almonds, as well as naturally low-carb chickpea pretzels. According to a ketogenic diet market report by Grand View Research Inc., the keto snack market was valued at $9.57 billion in 2019, with anticipated growth of more than $5 billion across an eight-year period, and the demand for low-carb snack varieties continues to skyrocket. 

editors' picks

Chefs Life Culinary Oils

SRP: $12.99 per 16.9-ounce bottle

The three most compelling attributes of Chefs Life Culinary Oils are the brand’s “how-to” labeling, premium restaurant-quality blends, and beautiful, counter-worthy bottles. Each oil is designed for a specific purpose in the cooking process, eliminating consumer guesswork in the kitchen. First, the brand’s “use this for” labeling streamlines the cooking process for at-home cooks. Second, if there is one thing all chefs agree on, it’s that the quality of the oil is key to any great dish. The Culinary Oil line offers three blends for every step in the cooking process: Cooking Oil, Blending Oil and Finishing Oil. Lastly, along with direct labeling and restaurant-quality ingredients, Chefs Life’s clean, white, simple glass bottles look beautiful on any shelf, offering a luxury product at an affordable price. The brand’s culinary oil blends stand out from others in the category, as they are expertly crafted and keep the consumer first in mind. 

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Chicken of the Sea Crispy Stuffed Shrimp

SRPs:$14.99 per 20.3-ounce 24-piece pack; $19.99 per 27.09-ounce 32-piece pack

For consumers in search of easy, ready-to-cook products that offer a restaurant-quality experience at home, Chicken of the Sea Crispy Stuffed Shrimp provides a quick, unique meal. The Crispy Stuffed Shrimp line comes in three on-trend flavors, Creamy Wonton, Thai Sweet Chili, and Creamy Garlic and Spinach, offering restaurant-level dishes made in minutes in one’s home kitchen. When looking at other value-added breaded seafood options on the market today, the company found that most products include only plain breaded shrimp and fish. Chicken of the Sea sought to change that with this product launch, bringing to market novel flavor profiles with decadent stuffings and innovative breading. The line’s varieties can serve as an appetizer or dinner item, with the added convenience of easy prep in an oven or air fryer. 

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Clio Vanilla Almond Granola & Yogurt Parfait Bars

SRPs: $2.49 per 1.94-ounce box; $28 per 10-pack box

Clio Vanilla Almond Granola & Yogurt Parfait Bars are the perfect mix of health and nutrition. The bars are the most convenient way to eat yogurt and granola — there’s no need to make a bowl of parfait with a separate tub of yogurt or bag of granola, or even for a spoon. The bars combine the benefits of whole-milk Greek yogurt, which is high in protein and probiotics, with a cheesecake-like texture; a crunchy layer of cranberry almond granola; and a decadent almond butter coating. With this innovative bar, Clio transforms everyday yogurt into a craveable, ready-made refrigerated bar that’s perfect for a satisfying breakfast or anytime on-the-go snack. Offering an explosion of taste and texture in every bite, each bar is 210 calories and contains 10 grams of protein. 

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Coca-Cola Starlight

SRPs: $2.09 per 20-fluid-ounce bottle; $4.69 per 10-pack 7.5-fluid-ounce mini cans

Inspired by the infinite possibilities of space, Coca-Cola Starlight fuses signature Coca-Cola taste with unexpected touches. For instance, in a nod to the coldness of outer space, Coca-Cola Starlight’s subtle cooling sensation increases sip after sip. The beverage also features an otherworldly reddish hue and a dash of indulgent unexpectedness to the core Coca-Cola taste. The product takes the current outer space macro trend within Gen Z and builds an entire experience around the idea of discovering what space may taste like. Knowing that 72% of Gen Z teens are looking for new experiences and sensations to liven things up, Coca-Cola Starlight offers a bold and vibrant option specifically to fit that desire. As such, the beverage provides a unique refreshment experience to appeal to Gen Z’s love of discovery. 

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Consider Pastures Eggs

SRP: $6.49 per dozen eggs

As the first national egg brand to embrace the principles of regenerative agriculture, Consider Pastures is laser-focused on the welfare of its hens. The brand’s Certified Humane Pasture Raised eggs are laid by hens on small farms that offer daily access to grassy pastures where the birds can forage, scratch and dust bathe. These practices help add nutritional value to the eggs, including more omega-3 fats and vitamin D, as well as more vibrant and flavorful yolks, substantial egg whites, and thick shells. Consider Pastures is also focused on small farms, pollinator colonies, and soil health and biodiversity.

editors' picks

Crav’n Flavor Tiramisu

SRP: $5.99 per 17.64-ounce package

This frozen dessert is imported from Italy, made with ladyfingers soaked in coffee with zabaione and mascarpone cream, and then dusted with real cocoa powder. Crav’n Flavor Tiramisu has helped expand the brand’s growing frozen dessert assortment and adds a unique solution for Topco Associates LLC members to grow their private label penetration in the category. According to Topco, the tiramisu yields a higher margin rate in comparison with national-brand frozen desserts, and has benefited from member advertisements, an online presence and strategic placement in the freezer case. Additionally, the dessert is placed on a sustainable paper tray and packaged in a 100% recyclable paperboard container.

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Culinaria Hibiscus Lime Craft Tea

SRP: $4.99 per 4-pack of 12-fluid-ounce bottles

This small-batch brewed tea offers a unique flavor profile with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. According to Schnuck Markets Inc., the bottled beverage has become a top seller of its Culinaria private brand and isn’t found anywhere else in the local market. Along with other Culinaria products, it has added excitement, interest and innovation to the category, and it has also helped drive further customer loyalty via items available only at Schnucks. The tea has received off-shelf promotional support along with a promotional price and an aggressive marketing campaign.

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Culinaria Layered Gelato-Cheesecake Fudge Crumble    

SRP: $5.49 per pint

Imported from Italy, Schnuck Markets Inc.’s private label layered gelato offers three flavor profiles in one pint-sized jar, with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. Made with rBST-free milk, the product has been ranked No. 1 in the multi-layered gelato segment for the Culinaria brand. According to the grocer, the brand has expanded into additional pint segments as a way to capture consumer loyalty with tasty and authentic options, and there are already plans in motion for additional multi-layered gelato frozen desserts. 

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Cutting Vedge Plant-Based Meatballs

SRP: $7.99 per 8-ounce package

Reese artichokes are the No. 1 ingredient in these plant-based meatballs, along with a nutritious mix of spinach, quinoa and chickpeas. On a mission to transform the artichoke into a range of delicious food possibilities, the company partnered with chefs to curate real ingredients that deliver on taste and texture along with protein. The meatless product is non-GMO and free from gluten, soy and dairy while also offering a good source of protein and iron. Cutting Vedge is a net-new launch that has gained distribution with retailers such as Albertsons, Giant Food and Raley’s, and has been supported by a retailer-specific, geo-targeted digital campaign on social media at stores’ surrounding ZIP codes.

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Daily Crunch Nashville Hot Sprouted Almonds    

SRP: $7.49 per 5-ounce package

This spicy, crunchy and vegan snack is a nod to Daily Crunch’s hometown of Nashville, Tenn., where hot chicken reigns supreme. The sprouted almonds are combined with all-natural ingredients, including cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, chili powder and monk fruit sweetener. The company had a 60-day exclusive with e-grocer Thrive Market to promote the launch of the almonds, which managed to sell out in the first 30 days. The product has also had a huge impact on category performance on Amazon, increasing overall sales and becoming a top 50 product in the almond category. Following a successful launch with Thrive Market and in natural product stores such as Erewhon Market and Foxtrot, Daily Crunch plans to expand the flavor into larger, mainstream retailers later this year.

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Eclipse Caramel Butter Pecan Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert  

SRP: $6.99 per 14-ounce container

Eclipse Foods and its co-founder and CTO, Thomas Bowman, make innovative plant-based products that the company says are indistinguishable in flavor, texture and functionality from conventional dairy. Its patent-pending plant-based platform recreates microscopic structures in milk that give dairy its unique mouthfeel and creaminess, and in taste tests, 73% of people found Eclipse ice cream to be creamier than traditional dairy ice cream. The Caramel Butter Pecan flavor is gaining national retail distribution at Whole Foods Markets, Albertsons, Vons, Pavilions, Central Market and other retailers, and Eclipse has driven brand awareness and trial through field marketing, in-store demonstrations and shopper marketing. Social media and organic influencers have also driven word-of-mouth amplification. The company additionally has a mission to create a more sustainable, healthy and humane food system.

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Farmer Focus Globally Inspired Organic Pre-Seasoned Chicken    

SRP: $7.79-$12.99, various weights

With consumers increasingly cooking at home since the start of the pandemic, Farmer Focus found a way to help its retail partners provide shoppers with a variety of adventurous and seasonal flavor profiles that make it easy to create the perfect meal at home. The pre-seasoned chicken line is low in sodium and gluten-free, has low to no sugar, and offers globally inspired, trend-forward flavors: Zesty Peruvian Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast, Savory Chophouse Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs, Rich Red Curry Bone-in Skin-on Chicken Thighs, Toasted Lager Half Chicken, and Lemon and Cracked Pepper Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast. The product packaging includes a QR code-enabled Farm ID, which makes it easier to trace each package of chicken back to the farm where it was raised.

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Fila Manila Filipino Adobo Sauce and Marinade    

SRP: $6.99 per 12-ounce jar

First-generation Filipino American immigrant Jake Deleon was inspired to create products using his own family recipes with authentic ingredients and a modern and all-natural twist. According to Deleon, Filipino Americans are the second-largest Asian American community, yet there’s very little representation in mass grocery. The company created this sauce to help spotlight Filipino cuisine and culture while making the community’s flavors accessible to all. The sauce is also naturally gluten-free and vegan, and contains zero artificial colors, flavors and added sugar. It is now distributed in more than 1,000 stores nationwide, has become a No. 1 bestseller on Amazon, and has propelled Fila Manila to become the top Filipino brand in the United States.

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Food Club Chunky Cut Tomatoes

SRP: 99 cents per 14.5-ounce can

Suitable for pasta sauces, soup, chili and more, Food Club Chunky Cut Diced Tomatoes offer a larger cut for a big, bold bite and texture not found in other offerings. In a category with almost no innovation, the item provided a new option in the canned tomato aisle, enabling more options and flexibility in home kitchens. Manufacturer Topco Associates LLC intends to keep communicating the unique attributes of Food Club Chunky Cut Diced Tomatoes to its membership, aiming to increase own-brand penetration and sales through weekly advertisements, strategic product placement in-aisle with aisle blades and shelf danglers, and end caps with cross-promotional opportunities. Food Club Chunky Cut Diced Tomatoes come in a traditional 100% recyclable aluminum can with a pop-top lid for easy opening.

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Forager Project Organic Kids Cashewmilk Yogurt

SRP: $1.99 per 3.2-ounce pouch

In contrast to the many kids’ snacks on the market that are sugar-filled, processed, and made with ingredients that aren’t derived from the earth, Forager Project saw an opportunity to upscale the entire category with 100% organic ingredients sustainably sourced from our home planet. The result was a line of 100% vegan cashewmilk yogurt packed with probiotics, calcium, and essential vitamins D, A and B12 in convenient pouches that allow families — even those with strict dietary restrictions — to enjoy on-the-go snacking with minimal mess. Forager’s Kids Yogurt is also vegan, gluten- and soy-free, and low in sugar. Ahead of the product launch, the brand  created a robust launch plan to drive awareness and sales in store, including a Kids Yogurt VIP launch mailer sent to kid-focused influencers and top-tier media contacts.

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Full Circle Market Frozen Fruit Gems

SRP: $4.99-$5.99 per 9.2-ounce box of four 2.3-ounce cups

For those in search of a guilt-free frozen treat, Full Circle Market Frozen Fruit Gems amply fill the bill: These beads of super-cold cryogenically frozen fruit and fruit juice are available in four flavors: Strawberries, Blueberries, Tropical Fruit and Strawberry Banana. At just 60 calories and dairy free, with no added sugars, artificial flavors, preservatives or synthetic colors, this novel spin on frozen fruit is a satisfying year-round snack. Flavor extensions and innovative delivery methods are just two of the options under consideration by manufacturer Topco Associates LLC to build on the performance of this exciting private label product. Additionally, although frozen novelties aren’t known for their benefits-first packaging, Full Circle Market Frozen Fruit Gems make better-for-you goodness their main message, while the box itself is 100% recyclable.

editors' picks

Full Circle Grain Free Granola

SRP: $4.99-$5.99 per 8-ounce pouch

Loaded with nuts and seeds, non-GMO verified, gluten-free, Paleo-friendly Full Circle Market Grain Free Granola in Maple Vanilla and Coconut Chocolate varieties offers grain-free crunch, with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, at an own-brand price. Grain-free shoppers have usually had to avoid the granola aisle, but these flavorful options are a game changer. According to manufacturer Topco Associates LLC, the products have contributed to the growth of the $630 million granola category, which is growing at 3% per year, while the grain-free granola segment accounts for $21 million in sales, with 12% growth year over year. As demand continues to rise among shoppers, Topco plans to expand flavors and packaging sizes of the line. The products are sold in a convenient resealable pouch that keeps the contents fresh longer.

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Full Circle Market Italian Style Plant- Based Pasta Sauce

SRP: $3.79-$3.99 per 23.9-ounce jar

With 36% of meat eaters trying to add more plant-based foods to their diets, Topco Associates LLC saw a void within own-brand products in the pasta sauce category. As a result, the manufacturer created Full Circle Market Plant-Based Sausage Style and Plant-Based Bolognese Style Pasta Sauces, which enable Topco member shoppers to enjoy a meatless meal with all of the familiar flavor they love, at an affordable price. Made with vegetable protein and no added sugar, these certified plant-based vegan pasta sauces contain 5 grams of protein, making them a wise choice for health-conscious shoppers seeking full-flavored plant-based options in the pasta sauce aisle. Full Circle Market Plant-Based Sausage Style and Plant-Based Bolognese Style Pasta Sauces have stepped up to fill this demand, with additional flavor varieties currently under consideration.

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Full Circle Market Plant-Based Cheddar Cheese Alternative

SRP: $4.49 per 7.1-ounce pouch

Targeting consumers looking for healthier food choices, versatile and nutritious Full Circle Market Plant-Based Cheddar Cheese Alternative is the first-ever own-brand plant-based product in the shred segment. Dairy-free and Non-GMO Certified, the flavorful plant-based option stands out with regard to both high quality and affordable price. Additionally, the item comes in a handy resealable pouch for long-lasting freshness. Noting that the plant-based cheese segment continues to grow, with plant-based shreds up 65.7% year over year and own brand growing by a whopping 40.9%, manufacturer Topco Associates LLC plans to add such popular shred varieties as Mexican blend and Italian blend to the line. Full Circle Market Plant-Based Cheese Alternative products currently include Cheddar, Mozzarella and Monterey Jack with Peppers varieties. 

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Genuine Coconut Organic Coconut Chunks

SRP: Below $3 per 2-ounce bag

Genuine Coconut Organic Coconut Chunks are USDA Organic, naturally sweet, ready to eat and designed for on-the-go snacking. Featuring freshly peeled and cut 100% raw coconut meat, the snack is a great source of fiber and potassium and has just two ingredients: organic coconut infused with natural flavoring. Grown in India without pesticides or synthetic fertilizers, the chunks are verified non-GMO, vegan and gluten-free, and contain no added sugars or preservatives. In addition to a 45-day shelf-life guarantee, the product promises versatility: When not being enjoyed as is, it can be used in smoothie bowls, yogurt, oatmeal and more. The item has been widely promoted via social, digital and trade show appearances, with Genuine Coconut also employing targeted retailer advertisements and influencer marketing, and planning for competitive pricing and national distribution.

editors' picks 22

Good Culture Lactose Free Cottage Cheese

SRP: $3.49 per 15-ounce tub

Good Culture Lactose Free Cottage Cheese gives the approximately 65% of the U.S. population who have difficulty digesting lactose the ability to enjoy thick, creamy, nutrient-dense cultured cottage cheese without gastric discomfort — and also without sacrificing quality or taste. At 14 grams of protein per serving, the keto-certified product is made with only five simple ingredients: pasture-raised milk, cream, sea salt, gut-friendly probiotic cultures and lactase enzyme. Sourcing pasture-raised milk from small Midwestern farms ensures that Good Culture is offering chemical-, pesticide-, hormone- and antibiotic-free ingredients from trusted sources. The product launch (in 100% recyclable packaging) was supported by an awareness-driving digital marketing campaign designed to drive lactose-free shoppers to local retailers, while a robust shopper marketing plan including shelf talkers and coupon events aimed to drive trial at store level.

editors' picks 22

Good Planet Foods Snackable Plant-Based Cheese Wedges

SRP: $4.99 per package of six 19-gram wedges

First-to-market Snackable Plant-Based Cheese Wedges from Good Planet Foods are crafted with real allergen-free, eco-friendly ingredients such as coconut oil and plant starches and proteins. Available in Pepper Jack, Smoked Gouda, and Original varieties, the creamy, individually wrapped wedges boast a texture and flavor profile similar to their dairy counterparts. The product is also versatile enough to be melted into consumers’ favorite recipes. Good Planet Foods is supporting its Snackable Plant-Based Cheese Wedges through various marketing channels, among them public relations efforts and social media. The company also worked with key retailer partners as well as shopper programs to promote trial of the snackable wedges, which are packaged in a recyclable cardboard container that uses 90% post-consumer material and sports bright, cheerful primary colors to make it easily shoppable for consumers.

editors' picks 22

Hart Dairy Naturally Grass Fed Whole Milk

SRP: $5.79-$5.99 per 59-ounce carton

The only national brand to sell milk from cows that are pasture raised and grass fed 365 days a year, and never confined, Hart Dairy Naturally Grass Fed Milk costs about $1 less than organic grass-fed brands, on average. The milk has a uniquely full, rich and creamy flavor, as well as being naturally higher in omega-3s and conjugated linoleic acids (CLAs) than conventional milk. Hart Dairy frequently deployed in-store promotions (TPRs) to drive trial and repeat purchases of the product, along with executing digital coupons and paid social media campaigns to generate awareness, and attending national trade shows to engage supermarket buyers and spark interest. The first Certified Humane pasteurized dairy cow operation in the United States, Hart Dairy is also on ASPCA’s Shop With Your Heart list.

editors' picks 22

Heinz Dip & Crunch

SRP: $2.49 per 3-ounce package (good for one burger)

Adding more fun to eating hamburgers and other sandwiches, this packaged duo combines a Heinz sauce and salty potato “crunchers” for a satisfying multi-textural eating experience. The pairing of a mayo-based sauce and chips — meant for dipping and topping, respectively — is a real innovation in the condiment section and was based on the company’s extensive consumer insights on how people enjoy their burgers. After originally launching the product at Jack in the Box restaurants on the West Coast, Kraft Heinz expanded Dip & Crunch into the retail sector in spring 2022, noting that “there is no line between what consumers can get at a restaurant and what they can get at home.” The brand’s condiment line received a 15% year-over-year lift with the introduction of this item. 

editors' picks 22

Hy-Vee Açai Bowls

SRP: $3.48 per 7.76-ounce container

The middle of Iowa may not be tropical, but that look, taste and feel was on the minds of product developers working for West Des Moines-based Hy-Vee. For its store-brand offerings, the retailer sought to create an on-trend açai bowl and started with a creamy sorbet base made with fresh açai berries, topped with crunchy granola and fruit. To make the item accessible to shoppers, Hy-Vee chose a ready-to-eat format and set it at a value price point. Marketed as a snack or meal across different dayparts, the açai bowl is supported by social media exposure and promotions in Hy-Vee’s monthly Mega Ad that reaches millions of consumers. It’s already causing a stir at the point of sale, thanks in part to its vibrant packaging, which features a peel-able lid. 

editors' picks 22

Impossible Chicken Nuggets Made From Plants

SRP: $8.99 per 13.5-ounce stand-up bag

Which came first, the chicken or the plant? Offering the taste of animal-based protein with plant-derived ingredients, this product aims to deliver both experiences. The nuggets pack 13 grams of protein per serving with 30% less fat, no cholesterol and lower sodium compared with traditional chicken nuggets. The product benefits from a better-for-you and a better-for-the-planet halo among consumers, as it’s made using 49% less land, consuming 44% less water and emitting 36% fewer greenhouse-gas emissions than regular poultry. The item also seems to have cleared the high threshold for taste, scoring higher than the leading animal chicken nuggets in a blind taste test and coming out on top in a promotional Impossible Nugget Throwdown food-truck tour of five U.S. cities.

editors' picks 22

Jeni’s High Five Candy Bar Ice Cream

$12 per pint

Living up to its name, this decadent ice cream variety received some enthusiastic gestures of approval upon its introduction. Based on the High Five candy bar, a favorite of brand founder Jeni Britton, the product is made with a blend of ultra-creamy peanut butter ice cream with caramel sauce, chocolate-covered pretzels and chocolate flecks, reflecting Jeni’s signature inventive indulgence. Product developers spent time getting the base to taste more like real nougat instead of just a simple salted peanut butter ice cream (The secret? Honey). The decadent flavor has outperformed other new varieties that entered the category at the same time, driving incremental growth to the brand and overall category. In fact, Jeni’s reports that the SKU has become one of its top-10 performing flavors. 

editors' picks 22

Kazoo Tortilla Chips

SRP: $4.99 per 11-ounce bag

These aren’t chips off the old block: Kazoo Snacks has come out with what it says are the first upcycled, water-saving tortilla chips on the market. Made with 40% upcycled corn germ, the product is also higher in enzymes, healthy fats, oils and nutrients, and contains 61% more vitamin E. Kazoo reports that in their first year, the chips have saved nearly 1 million gallons of water, a step in the brand’s overall goal to save 1 billion gallons of water by 2025. The water claim is right on the package as a way to signal that the item is a sustainable choice. Available in Restaurant Style and Lime Zest varieties, the tortilla chips will soon be available in 100% sustainable packaging to close the loop even tighter. Kazoo is also planning to release more flavors, including Chili Lime, Nacho, Spicy Nacho and Ranch.

editors' picks 22

Keto Krisp Butter & Salt Bar with Collagen

SRP: $35.99 per 12-pack

As keto eating lifestyles keep revving forward, this product fires on all product development cylinders. It’s high in protein, indulgent in a sweet and salty way, and function-forward. Combining the flavor profiles of keto-friendly butter and savory Himalayan salt, the snack provides 10 grams of protein with 4 net carbs and 2 grams of sugar. Functional collagen is a bonus at a time when consumers are seeking enhanced nutrition from their convenient snacks. As part of the rollout, the brand gave away 20,000 bars via a Whole Foods Market sampling event, took part in a new product launch with distributors UNFI and KeHE, and promoted the introduction with in-store demos, special displays, and partnerships with influencers and recipe creators, among other activities. 

editors' picks 22

Koe Tropical Organic Kombucha

SRP: $2.49 per 12-ounce can

Considering that health-oriented consumers haven’t soured on the kombucha trend, this functional beverage has really hit the mark. Taste is a differentiator, as the fruit-forward drink is palate-friendly and available in six flavors: Tropical (the latest flavor), Watermelon, Strawberry Lemonade, Raspberry Dragonfruit, Mango and Blueberry Ginger. Koe kombucha is organic, non-GMO and naturally sweetened with a touch of organic sugar, and it contains 200% or more of the recommended daily value of vitamin C. The vibrantly hued, recently redesigned packages are shelf-stable and recyclable, and sell at a price point that’s 25% less than traditional kombucha per serving. Shoppers can find it at grocery, club and c-stores around the country, and it’s already grown more than 16 times faster than the kombucha category, according to Koe.

editors' picks 22

La Terra Fina Tzatziki with Feta Dip and Spread

SRP: $5.49 per 10-ounce tub

It’s a dip. It’s a spread. It’s a hit. This product appeals to a broad range of consumers because of its versatility and clean-label profile. The keto-friendly, gluten-free item is made with dairy sourced from cows not treated with rBST and offers a smooth texture and balanced flavor from such ingredients as feta cheese, Greek yogurt, cucumbers and fresh herbs. It pairs well with vegetables, sandwiches and salads for everyday and entertaining occasions, an attribute that the brand has emphasized in its inspiring recipe videos. While shoppers have discovered the dip and spread at grocery banners such as Kroger, Harris Teeter, Price Chopper, Market Basket, WinCo and Hy-Vee, the product has also garnered attention as a winner of People magazine’s food awards, chosen from among 1,300 entries. 

editors' picks 22

LesserEvil Sun Poppers 

$3.99 per 4-ounce bag

It’s literally a mashup between consumers’ propensity for snacking and their desire to live a more sustainable lifestyle: a salty snack made from upcycled watermelon and pumpkin seeds. Indeed, LesserEvil’s Sun Poppers meet a lot of preferences among today’s shoppers: They’re plant-based, USDA Certified Organic, grain- and gluten-free, kosher, vegan, non-GMO Project Verified, kosher, and available in two flavorful varieties: Vegan Sour Cream + Onion and Himalayan Pink Salt. At 130 calories per serving, the product is marketed as a snack that one can feel good about eating.  Whole Foods Market is LesserEvil’s biggest partner for distribution of these novel snacks, which are also available at many independent grocers. The line won “Best of Show” at KeHE Distributors’ 2022 summer show. Look for a new Nacho variety soon.

editors' picks 22

Marquis Lifestyle Beverages

SRP: $34.99 per 12-pack of 12-fluid-ounce cans

The developers behind this product wanted to create a drink that offers a balanced, smooth “lift” without the caffeine crash. Made with a blend of yerba mate, green coffee and green tea, and sweetened with monk fruit, the plant-based beverage is “a better way to caffeinate for every occasion,” according to the Marquis brand. The drink is also certified vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free and organic, with zero sugar and zero calories, and enhanced with four types of B vitamins, antioxidants and vitamin C — pretty much addressing many of consumers’ nutritional preferences. Grocers can merchandise it in a variety of ways: as an alternative to coffee, tea, energy drinks and sodas, or as a cocktail mixer. Marquis Lifestyle Beverages are currently available in four fruit-flavor varieties.

editors' picks 22

Maxine’s Heavenly Chocolate Chip Crispy Cookies

$6.99 per 6.3-ounce box

While other brands use trendy “zero-sugar” sweeteners, Maxine’s Heavenly cookies are “sweetened by nature,” using coconut sugar and dates, making the cookies a low-glycemic guilt-free treat. The product also has a homemade, freshly baked taste evoking the decadence of conventional cookies, but made with clean ingredients that consumers can feel good about eating. Maxine’s Heavenly was able to achieve this feat by using the cleanest, healthiest and most sustainable ingredients, without compromising on taste. Although made from recipes based on those handed down by the co-founder’s mother, the eponymous Maxine, the cookies still manage to be vegan and gluten-free, and to exclude most major allergens. 

editors' picks 22

Momofuku Goods Noodles

SRP: $11.99 per 16.75-ounce 5-count package

Momofuku Goods aims to prove that at-home instant ramen noodles can be a gourmet experience. Ready in four minutes, the noodles have no added preservatives or artificial flavorings. Plus they’re never fried or frozen — a major differentiating point from many other products on the market — making them as nutritious as they are delicious. The brand uses an 18-hour air-drying process that also sets these noodles apart. The result: 25% fewer calories than most instant noodles, double the usual amount of protein, and zero milligrams of cholesterol. Momofuku Goods Noodles additionally combine the convenience of packaged noodles with the restaurant-level flavor that Momofuku is known for. The product line is available in three bold, restaurant-worthy flavors: Spicy Soy, Soy & Scallion, and Tingly Chili. 

editors' picks 22

Montchevre Topped Goat Cheese    

SRP: $6.99 per 4-ounce package

Saputo’s Montchevre Topped Line is all about targeting consumers crazy for boards — charcuterie boards, that is. Gourmet ingredients top Montchevre’s rich, creamy goat cheese, making it an ideal choice to serve at dinners, picnics, office gatherings and other occasions. The flavors of Cranberry and Port and Roasted Red Pepper are ideal for sweet and savory palates, while the packaging stands apart from others in the category, because it allows consumers to simply unwrap the topped cheese, flip the cup over and serve. This packaging design, rarely seen in the category, also enables customers to choose their own flavor and serving journey, making the product appealing as well as easy to use in any format (dip, spread, etc.). The product can be served hot (melted) or cold, and paired with a variety of foods — crackers, breads, vegetables, fruits, salads and more.

editors' picks 22

Moon Cheese Crunchy Cheese Sticks

SRP: $4.99 per 3-ounce bag

Moon Cheese, the 100% cheese snack brand, has added Crunchy Cheese Sticks to its lineup. Moon Cheese Crunchy Cheese Sticks are the first shelf-stable cheese snack product in a stick or puff format made from 100% real mozzarella cheese. These snacks have four times more protein than leading brands — 14-15 grams — only 3 grams of carbohydrates, and 1 gram or less of sugar per serving. The certified gluten-free, keto-friendly snack is made with rBST-free cheese and contains no artificial flavors. The product line is available in five flavors: Cheesy Does It, Wild White Chedda’, Kick It Up a Nacho, Rowdy Ranch and Yum Inferno. Moon Cheese Crunchy Cheese Sticks provide superior nutrition over the mostly extruded corn-based cheese stick snack products currently available. The item is packaged in bold, colorful and eye-catching bags, each of which is double-lined with a premium seal designed to retain the freshness of the 100% real cheese snack.

editors' picks 22

Mrs. Goldfarb’s Unreal Deli Steak Slices

SRP: $5.99-$6.99 per 5-ounce package

Mrs. Goldfarb’s Unreal Deli Steak Slices are a mouthwatering innovation packed with 15 grams of plant-based protein per 2.5-ounce serving. The plant-based deli meat is made with ingredients that consumers will recognize: lentils, black rice and shiitake mushrooms. Unreal Deli products use only simple, clean ingredients to create an option that’s not only eco- and animal-friendly, but also tastes as close to the real deal as possible. Each slice of this steak is kosher and free of cholesterol, nitrates and GMOs. Unreal Steak Slices are also packaged in a distinctive bag. The brand aims to keep innovating by partnering with mainstream influencers such as Kevin Smith on his Mooby’s franchise and Goldbelly deals to help reach wider veg-curious and flexitarian audiences.

editors' picks 22

Nasoya Plantspired Steak

SRP: $6.99 per 7-ounce pouch

As consumers continue to prioritize plant-based eating, many key drivers have emerged, including an increased focus on health and sustainability. Consumers are increasingly looking for healthier, more environmentally friendly alternatives to meat while still enjoying authentic and satisfying flavor profiles. To help meet this growing demand, Nasoya has developed a plant-based meat alternative. Its Plantspired Steak fills a gap in the market, offering consumers a protein-packed plant-based steak option bursting with authentic Asian flavors. Crafted with non-GMO ingredients and boasting 14 grams of plant-based protein per serving, Plantspired Steak is a premium product made from soy protein and featuring a savory, meat-like texture. The product is packaged in a convenient pouch that can easily be microwaved for a quick and accessible plant-based meal. What’s more, each pouch contains 2.5 servings, making the item a great solution for busy families and working professionals alike.

editors' picks 22

Natreve Mooless

$29.99 per approximately 9-ounce package

Mooless is an animal-free whey protein powder molecularly identical to the traditional whey protein found in cow’s milk, but made via fermentation without any animal inputs. The 20 grams of animal-free whey protein found in Mooless offer the same nutrition, taste and texture as conventional whey protein powder, but without hormones or lactose, and with significantly less environmental impact. Created by Perfect Day, Mooless’ whey protein generates up to 97% fewer greenhouse-gas emissions, 99% less water consumption and 60% less energy use compared with conventional whey protein powder production methods. The smooth mouthfeel and flavors of Chocolate Fudge Brownie, Cookies & Cream, Strawberry Shortcake, and Vanilla Bean Cupcake help Mooless blend perfectly into smoothies or wherever protein powder is added. 

editors' picks 22

No Cow Chocolate Dipped Protein Bar

SRP: $32.99 per variety pack of 12 2.12-ounce bars

No Cow Chocolate Dipped Protein Bars aspire to offer a better taste than their animal-based counterparts, without compromising on nutrition or a commitment to purely sourced, plant-based ingredients. Each dipped bar is powered by a proprietary blend of rice and pea protein and packs a whopping 20 grams of plant protein, 3-5 grams of net carbs, and only 1 gram of sugar. The bars are available in six indulgent flavors reminiscent of classic American treats, such as Peanut Butter Cup and Chocolate Mint Cookie. They meet consumers’ growing desire for options that satisfy cravings and nourish the body from a source free of animal-based proteins. No Cow’s plant-based formula produces only about 32 kilograms of carbon emissions per bar, compared with 106 kilograms for a whey-based protein bar. 

editors' picks 22

Once Again Graham Cracker Sandwiches

SRPs: $1.69 -$1.89 per 1.59-ounce package; $13.52-$15.12 per retail box of eight

Once Again Graham Cracker Sandwiches, available in Peanut Butter and Sunflower Butter flavors, are certified gluten-free, organic and vegan, so they appeal to a variety of dietary styles. Made with a blend of organic sorghum flour, organic oat flour and organic cassava flour, along with ethically sourced peanut butter or sunflower butter, they offer a clean-label alternative to traditional snacks. The graham cracker sandwiches are handcrafted in small batches at a bakery, settig them apart from mass-produced snacks. The products are also part of Once Again’s Honest in Trade program, which strives to create and sustain environmentally, economically and socially fulfilling partnerships from farm to fork. The cracker sandwiches feature packaging with a vertical representation on the shelf, lending itself to more “real estate” for its branding. Additionally, Once Again Graham Cracker Sandwiches’ cartons and pouches won the American Package Design Award for 2022.

editors' picks 22

Perfect Hydration Alkaline Water 

SRP: $5.99 per 1-gallon jug

The Perfect Hydration Alkaline Water Gallon offers clean, purified alkaline water in the planet-friendly packaging that more consumers are looking for. Unique in shape and design, Perfect Hydration’s container is made using 100% post-consumer recycled PET-1 plastic and is 100% recyclable and BPA-free, making the company the only manufacturer to offer premium alkaline water in a 100% recycled-plastic 1-gallon jug. Also, unlike other water brands that mine watersheds and international mineral water springs, the brand’s water is bottled right in the United States. This means that there’s no need to transport water from remote locations across the globe, resulting in less international shipping and a lighter carbon footprint. Perfect Hydration water also stands out from other brands because every drop goes through a proprietary filtration and alkalizing process, resulting in a unique blend of electrolytes and a 9.5+ pH.

editors' picks 22

Planters Sweet & Spicy Dry Roasted Peanuts    

SRP: $3.25-$4.49 per 16-ounce jar

Consumers seeking new flavor experiences compelled Planters to go “swicy” with its new dry-roasted peanuts — a unique mix of sweet honey, sugar and spicy dried red chili peppers. Through rigorous consumer research, manufacturer Hormel Foods Corp. discovered that one of the most compelling attributes of the product was the taste sensation of the sweet and spicy flavor cues that few other items in the marketplace offer. After a robust sampling program with retail partners and outlets such as the Cincinnati Reds and the iconic Planters Nutmobile, the marketing team is now traveling nationwide with beloved mascot Mr. Peanut to provide a first taste to consumers at retail events, community celebrations and even the 2023 Super Bowl.

editors' picks 22

Primal Kitchen No Dairy Queso-Style Plant-Based Dip    

SRP: $7.79 per 11.5-ounce jar

Primal Kitchen’s queso uses pumpkin seed butter to create a familiar thick texture without dairy, and uses organic vegetables and spices, including bell peppers, jalapeño peppers and carrots, to create the perfect flavor. The item is Keto Certified, Whole30 Approved, certified gluten-free and Certified Paleo, as well as containing no tree nuts, dairy, soy, canola oil or sugar. The queso launched at Whole Foods Market in time for the Super Bowl and had store support with secondary placement. Primal Kitchen employed organic social content such as recipes and influencer and user-generated content awareness, in addition to advertorial content to educate consumers about the role that pumpkin seed butter plays in its new dairy- and tree nut-free formula.

editors' picks 22

Primal Kitchen Ranch Dip    

SRP: $6.99 per 10-ounce jar

Available in Original and Buffalo flavors, Primal Kitchen’s plant-based ranch dip counts avocado oil as its star ingredient, along with other clean components, among them apple cider vinegar and organic eggs and spices. The shelf-stable dip is free from dairy and soy; keto- Whole30- and Paleo-friendly; and available in a fully recyclable glass jar. The product has launched at key natural grocers like Whole Foods Market, Sprouts Farmers Market and Thrive Market, with increased distribution expected this fall. It’s supported by influencer marketing, social advertising and trendyTikTok videos such as @lowcarbstateofmind.

editors' picks 22

Real Good Foods Crispy Chicken Shell Tacos

SRP: $6.99 per package of two tacos

These low-carbohydrate tacos have shells made of antibiotic-free chicken and cheese as a substitute for the classic corn or flour tortilla. The tacos come in three varieties: seasoned beef and cheddar cheese, pulled chicken with cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses, and shredded chicken with Oaxaca and cotija cheeses topped with avocado tomatillo salsa. Each flavor is free from gluten and grain, with 2-3 grams of carbs and 23-25 grams of protein per serving. Featuring real, natural ingredients, the tacos are the result of a collaboration between Real Good and Cacique, the No. 1 brand of Hispanic cheeses, creams, chorizos, salsas and dips. Walmart was the first retail partner for the product, and as a result of the launch, Real Good’s overall sales have increased 25% monthly at the retailer. 

editors' picks 22

Signature Care Hypoallergenic Infant Formula    

SRP: $39.99 per 19.8-ounce container

During a time when infant formula has been difficult to find, Albertsons Cos. is differentiating itself with its own-brand formula, which falls under a specialty segment and has the same claims and attributes as the comparable national brand, but at a value price for its customers. This is the first hypoallergenic SKU in Albertsons’ private label formula set, aimed at managing infant colic and supporting digestive health, but the grocer plans to work with its supplier to develop any other missing specialty formulas to better represent them on shelf. Albertsons will continue to promote and develop special offers to consumers who already purchase the comparable name-brand formula.

editors' picks 22

Signature Reserve Mascarpone Vodka Pasta Sauce

SRP: $5.99 per 21.2-ounce jar

This private label pasta sauce features a delicate blend of tomatoes, vodka, and mascarpone and pecorino cheeses, and is imported directly from Torino, Italy. Albertsons Cos. worked with its vendor partner to source a beautiful jar that stands out on the shelf and also collaborated with its design agency to create a label that draws customers into the story of the product. The sauce launch was complemented by aggressive and frequent promotions to drive trials for customers, since Albertsons understands that tasting is believing with its unique pasta sauces. The Mascarpone Vodka sauce joins seven other sauces in the Signature Reserve line, and there are plans to expand into premium Alfredo sauces in the future.

editors' picks 22

Signature Select Pretzel Twirls Butter & Garlic

SRP: $4.99 per 16-ounce bag

Intensely and uniquely flavored snacks are currently all the rage, and Albertsons Cos. took note with its thick and crispy pretzel twirls seasoned with a blend of salt, garlic and herbs. This is a first-to-market private label product, offering the customer a flavor-packed snack at a value, and has quickly become a top seller among the food retailer’s salty snack assortment. Supported by secondary displays in stores and digital offers to drive awareness, the pretzels have sold at a higher rate than Albertsons’ original forecast. As such, the grocer plans to launch additional flavors to build out the product’s presence on the shelf.

editors' picks 22

Simple Mills Sweet Thins    

SRP: $5.39 per 4.25-ounce box

Sweet Thins snacks are sweetened with coconut sugar and contain a diverse mix of nutritious nut and seed flours, including watermelon seed flour. Simple Mills sources the seeds from the “wooly watermelon,” an heirloom varietal that has white flesh and is grown specifically for its seeds. By using watermelon seeds, the company is helping to drive demand for increased crop diversity and pest resiliencies. The line is available in three varieties — Honey Cinnamon, Chocolate Brownie and Mint Chocolate — and, according to Simple Mills, Sweet Thins are outpacing the total category and the top five competitor average dollar and unit velocities across all channels. Through PR, social media, influencer partnerships, mailers and shopper marketing, consumers learned about Sweet Thins and discovered easy-to-make recipes using the product, such as no-bake pie crusts.

editors' picks 22

Simply Done Reclosable Freezer and Storage Bags Multipack    

SRP: $10.99 per variety pack of 276 bags

Simply Done has simplified decision-making for the shopper by offering the right amount of storage bags in a four-box variety pack consisting of 38 quart freezer bags, 90 sandwich bags, 48 quart storage bags and 100 snack bags. Filling a growing need for shoppers looking for both convenience and an opportunity to stock up on necessities, the multipack offering received strong product support through manufacturer Topco Associates LLC’s marketing tools, online presence and member advertisements. In-aisle displays and back-to-school cross-merchandising also played a significant role in creating shopper awareness. To enhance performance, Topco intends to communicate the unique product’s attributes, profitability and margin rates to its membership. 

editors' picks 22

So Good So You Immunity Powered by Mushrooms Juice Shot

SRP: $3.99 per 1.7-ounce shot

Leveraging mushroom’s incredible popularity in the health-and-wellness space, this cold-pressed probiotic juice shot combines inflammation-fighting adaptogenic mushrooms with 100% of the recommended daily value of vitamin D to support cellular, brain and immune health. The Blueberry Clementine flavor profile offsets the mushroom taste, giving consumers a simple, accessible way to get the perfect balance of function, convenience and dosage. So Good So You’s products are made in a 100% renewable energy-powered, zero-waste manufacturing facility, and its packaging ultimately turns into water, soil and gas, which can be collected and converted into clean energy at landfill facilities. 

editors' picks 22

Somos Cuatro Chiles Taquería Salsa    

SRP: $3.99 per 12-ounce jar

All of the ingredients that Somos uses are grown in Mexico, and its products are made using traditional techniques like fire-roasting and molcajete-style grinding. The company’s Cuatro Chiles Taquería Salsa brings together a variety of peppers that yield more complex flavors, combining serrano, chile de arbol, chili and ancho peppers to create a bold taste with the perfect amount of heat. Somos connected with hundreds of national media contacts and influencers who tried its products and learned more about how the company hopes to spice up the somewhat stale Mexican food category. The brand engaged digital channels by sharing paid and organic content, and also partnered with retailers on shopper marketing activities.

editors' picks 22

SpoonfulONE Crunchy Puffs

SRP: $16.99 per box of seven 1.76-ounce bags

Created to combat food allergies — which have doubled over the previous generation — SpoonfulONE Crunchy Puffs aim to activate babies’ tummy immunity. When infants eat the puffs, their immune systems are introduced to 16 foods associated with more than 90% of food allergies, and the immune cells in their stomachs begin to recognize the foods. When eaten on an ongoing basis, SpoonfulONE teaches babies’ immune systems that the 16 foods aren’t allergens. Certified Organic by Oregon Tilth, the pediatrician-recommended puffs are made with wholesome, real ingredients and contain no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, with each SKU tested up to three times to ensure that it meets or exceeds national and international standards for food safety and protein integrity. The company’s comprehensive mom-focused marketing push included paid, earned and shared components. 

editors' picks 22

Spudsy Sweet Potato Fries

SRP: $3.99 per 4-ounce bag

Reimagining classic comfort foods with a healthy, sustainable twist, Spudsy offers its Sweet Potato Fries in Hot Fry, Cheese Fry, Vegan Ranch and Sea Salt flavors, with each variety upcycled from imperfect sweet potatoes that would otherwise end up in landfills. The zesty snacks are also vegan, gluten-free, kosher, non-GMO and free of the top nine allergens. Product giveaways on social media platforms have proved successful in generating consumer excitement, and Spudsy has also been featured in regional segments in key markets with well-known lifestyle contributors to drive retail sell-through and boost the product’s availability. Additionally, each bright, inviting bag, with its prominent mission to #savethespud, is sure to be spotted on retailers’ shelves. Spudsy plans to keep up with consumer trends by exploring the possibility of new flavor expansions. 

editors' picks 22

Sunboy Spiked Coconut Water

SRP: $10.99 per 4-pack of 12-fluid-ounce cans

Sunboy has created a new category of better-for-you beverages with what the brand calls the world’s first ready-to-drink spiked coconut water. With ingredients like hydrating coconut water and real tropical juices, the sparkling alcoholic drink offers the fun and flavor of a beachside coconut cocktail in a convenient “go-anywhere” can. The 5% ABV beverage contains no artificial flavorings and 80% fewer calories than a traditional cocktail, as well as being vegan and gluten-free. Available in three flavors — Pineapple, Passion Fruit and Tangerine — the line comes in vivid packaging that stands out on the shelf. Its product pipeline includes additional real fruit-juice flavors such as Mango, which is slated to launch this coming spring. Sunboy remains committed to sourcing the cleanest, most ethical coconut water available.

editors' picks 22

Tippy Toes Hypoallergenic Infant Formula

SRP: $21.99 per 12.6-ounce container

Developed for babies who are allergic to cow’s milk, Tippy Toes Hypoallergenic Infant Formula features probiotics to help support digestive health, DHA for brain support, and no GMO or artificial growth hormones. Hypoallergenic — the largest own-brand void in infant formula — is an almost $100 million category that’s up 14.1% year over year. Filling a serious need, Tippy Toes offers a high-quality product at a 30% savings versus the national brand, according to manufacturer Topco Associates LLC. The formula comes in vacuum-sealed packaging to retain freshness, with on-pack callouts providing easy-to-follow benefit designations, as well as “compare to” statements at the top of the tin and on the cap itself. Tippy Toes works to maintain brand awareness among new moms through in-aisle signage, its brand web site and Topco member advertisements. 

editors' picks 22

Twinings Superblends

SRP: $5.49 per 1.12-ounce package of 16 tea bags

Combining tradition and innovation, Twinings’ Superblends line offers beverages that have each been infused with a star functional ingredient: Immune Support+ (mango, ginger, green tea and vitamin C); Sleep+ (herbal tea with vanilla, cinnamon and melatonin); Energy+ (apples, oranges, green tea and vitamin B6); and Heartea+ (herbal tea with raspberry, hibiscus and vitamin B1), as well as the later additions of Glow+ (peach, white tea and biotin), Probiotics+ Cold Water Infusions and Immune Support Cold Water Infusions. Part of Twining’s Drink in Life campaign encouraging consumers to prioritize their well-being, Superblends were also highlighted in a multifaceted paid-media effort to build awareness and drive purchase intent. Through the product line, which has received positive feedback, Twinings saw an opportunity to further its positioning within the wellness space.

editors' picks 22

Veggies Made Great Keto Friendly Muffins

SRP: $5.99 per 12-ounce box of six muffins

As lifestyle diets like keto grow in popularity, Veggies Made Great has introduced a Keto Friendly Muffins line with the goal of making a delicious-tasting muffin that aligns with brand guidelines — simple, clean ingredients; nutritionally smart; veggie- forward — while also meeting the growing demand for better-for-you low-carb fare. As such, the muffins are made using real vegetables like zucchini, carrots and beets, with allulose and monk fruit juice replacing traditional sugar. The colorfully packaged line comes in three crowd-pleasing flavors: Cinnamon Roll, Chocolate Raspberry and Mochaccino Chip. Sold frozen, and ready after a mere 35 seconds in the microwave — a fact called out on the box — these warm, moist muffins are indulgent treats that consumers don’t have to feel guilty about enjoying, with the Cinnamon Roll flavor a particular standout.

editors' picks 22

Veggies Made Great Stuffed Cauliflower Bites

SRP: $5.99 per 7-ounce box

Boasting vegetables as the No. 1 ingredient, Veggies Made Great Stuffed Cauliflower Bites are gluten-free, low-calorie — 200 calories per serving — and high in protein. Developed to satisfy the growing demand for better-for-you snacks, the bites feature a crispy crust made with cauliflower, carrots, broccoli and spinach, plus alternative flours like chickpea and rice, and are filled with a blend of authentic Italian veggies and cheese. The frozen line comes in four flavors: Margherita, Spinach & Ricotta; Roasted Veggie & 4 Cheese Blend; and Mushroom & Onion with Swiss. This healthier take on pizza rolls heats up quickly in the microwave or air fryer for a convenient nibble or appetizer any time of day. As it continues to monitor the category, Veggies Made Great will look to registered dietitians for third-party credibility. 

editors' picks 22

Whisps Cheese Crisps & Nuts

SRP: $7.99 per 5.75-ounce bag

Whisps Cheese Crisps & Nuts is a keto-friendly snack mix made with 100% real artisanal cheese exclusively created for the brand from dairy it sources from four Wisconsin family farms, joined by nuts and premium spices. The product line’s three bold flavors — Smoky Barbeque, Garlic Herb and Tangy Ranch — were each chosen based on consumers’ responses to the spice blends used for Whisps’ core product, Whisps Cheese Crisps. The first innovation for the brand beyond its crisps, Whisps Cheese Crisps & Nuts rolled out late last year in convenient resealable packages designed to facilitate at-home or on-the-go snacking, accompanied by a full-scale PR and earned-influencer campaign. Whisps plans to continue to expand Cheese Crisps & Nuts flavors and pack formats, as well as building distribution of the product line.

editors' picks 22

Wide Awake Medium Roast Cold Brew Coffee

SRP: $4.59-$5.59 per 48-fluid-ounce bottle

The first to market with own-brand cold-brew coffee, Wide Awake has now added Medium Roast Cold Brew Coffee to its premium cold-coffee lineup in its first foray into the refrigerated space, offering a bold, clean impactful graphic style with a minimized illustrative character and large block typography that demands attention. Cold brew, a driving innovation trend in the coffee category, has seen significant growth since the beginning of the pandemic, and as the first own brand providing cold-brew options, Wide Awake continues to grow own-brand penetration in the refrigerated cold-brew coffee segment by encouraging Topco Associates LLC member retailers to feature Wide Awake Medium Roast Cold Brew Coffee in refrigerated displays and together with other Wide Awake refrigerated coffee items, especially during the summer, a period of key seasonal demand.

editors' picks 22

Woodstock Organic Dark Chocolate Coconut Clusters with Pumpkin Seeds, Quinoa and Flax Seeds

SRP: $4.99 per 3-ounce pouch

Woodstock, the private label brand of United Natural Foods Inc., is meeting the need for clean-ingredient snacks that deliver on flavor and nutrition with Dark Chocolate Coconut Clusters with Pumpkin Seeds, Quinoa and Flax Seeds. Featuring the mindful ingredients noted in the name, along with wild rice and dried coconut, the clusters boast such certifications as USDA Organic, Non-GMO Project Verified, certified gluten-free and Kosher Certified while containing no hydrogenated fat, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. They can be eaten on their own, or added to smoothies, oatmeal or yogurt for added taste and texture. The line was promoted via social media and digital ads to increase consumer awareness, and there are plans afoot to take advantage of cross-merchandising opportunities with top-performing Woodstock categories such as frozen fruit.

editors' picks 22

Yancey’s Fancy Homestyle Cheddar Cheese Spreads

SRP: $6.99 per 8-ounce tub

Available in three unique varieties mirroring the brand’s most popular cheese flavors, Yancey’s Fancy Homestyle Cheddar Cheese Spreads look and taste as if they were homemade in consumers’ own kitchens. The chunky spreads can be used in recipes, as a burger or sandwich topper, or as a right-from-the-tub snack. Yancey’s strategically launched the line at each retail location using a comprehensive marketing approach. According to the brand, working collaboratively with retailers enabled it to customize a compelling product marketing plan that included such tactics as in-store signage with QR codes, calls to action, a landing page on Yancey’s website, and a targeted social media campaign that generated 230,000-plus impressions. Thanks to the spreads’ success, Yancey’s has been able to enter a $150 million category and successfully establish and grow sales.

editors' picks 22

Yasso Birthday Cake Bar

SRP: $6.19 per 14-fluid-ounce box of four 3.5-fluid-ounce bars

Containing just 90 calories, an impressive 5 grams of protein and no artificial ingredients, the Yasso Birthday Cake Bar enables consumers to celebrate year-round with real chunks of cake dough, rainbow sprinkles and creamy frozen Greek yogurt. Launched on the occasion of the brand’s 10th anniversary in grocery stores, Birthday Cake currently drives 7% of Yasso’s growth, contributing to top-tertile velocities in the accounts where it’s available. According to the brand, “We believe this flavor has the capacity to be a top SKU in our lineup, given its attractive flavor profile, indulgent taste and quality nutrition.” Like all core bars — the top-selling products in the brand’s portfolio — Birthday Cake carries the Yasso Creamy Guarantee: If consumers aren’t 1,000% satisfied with the creaminess of a bar, they’re eligible for a refund. 

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