The snacking sector is an attractive area of the food industry for startups looking for a breakthrough. Certain products, such as beef jerky, may become overlooked by consumers if brands do not act on creating points of difference for their products.
Ed Hauck, co-founder of The Curators, a meat snacking brand looking to change the face of jerky products, spoke with Harriet Jachec about how the brand’s products fit into the snacking sector overall.
Hauck explained the move from a US market to a UK one: “A combination of things came together at the same time. [Myself and Max Rees] were looking at a few areas of food and drink which we thought were on-trend and current but that might need some brand theatre to bring them to life a bit more.
“There’s so much good stuff in the UK that it can be difficult to find those niches to develop.
“Coming back and forth from the US, we loved eating jerky – which is the first thing, you’ve got to love your product. We were eating tonnes of the stuff! We also had some data that suggested how the market was growing, and we looked at what was on offer here [in the UK]. We then found a factory at the right time, and it all went from there.”
The snacking sector has taken off in recent times, and changing mealtimes are a contributing factor, Hauck contends: “There is a snacking movement, and we sit within that healthy snacking space. If you look at some of the data – and albeit, we don’t obsess on data – people are disrupting their mealtimes much more now than they ever have done.
“We would have traditionally sat down for three meals a day […] that just doesn’t happen any more. We are on the move and on the go, and there are a lot more products on offer, and there is more convenience. This has really played into our hands.
“We are also a protein story. Natural protein is a really nice place for us to be, so our products are about 50% protein, at 14 grams per pack. This is a hot trend, which has gone from being muscle-bound guys in gyms to a ubiquitous food ingredient in everyday products. Jerky products are known to be high in protein.
“The most recent data suggests that premium brands are bringing world food trends into the category, which is making it an attractive space for consumers.”
Ed Hauck was speaking with FoodBev’s Harriet Jachec.
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