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Why reinvent the condiment?

In a year of Kellogg’s pushing plant-based products and the introduction of the sugar tax, is it the perfect time to start getting innovative with our traditionally unhealthy sauces? We’re on a health streak, obsessing over avocados and rejecting milk chocolate in favour of dark – so why hasn’t this trend hit the supermarket condiment shelf yet?

Chobani, a Greek yoghurt company based in America, has certainly seen the yoghurt-shaped gap in the market.

Chobani has recognised that consumers want healthy alternatives, but are opposed to unfamiliarity. Here at System1, we advise brands to aim for 80% familiarity and 20% novelty, and Chobani have really hit the innovation nail on the head with their newest product Chobani  Savor. This low fat alternative to sour cream may not be ground breaking, but it is certainly making the most of a flourishing trend. And it’s a great bit of brand strategy, making a category jump feel natural.

But what makes this product a Fluent Innovation? Its packaging! There’s a comforting familiarity to it. Not only does the product work as a condiment substitute, it also looks like a condiment. Its squeezy tube can sit next to your mayonnaise, ketchup and mustard without looking out of place. But it’s also novel. It’s reusable: gone are the days when opening a tub of yoghurt was a 3-day commitment. The packaging also makes it portable: you can barbeque without the fear of a Greek yoghurt related disaster on your way home.  

We’ve recently shown you the ugly side of food innovation, particularly Heinz’s ‘Mayochup’ (2-Star) and ‘Slice of Sauce’ (1-Star) but perhaps Chobani are showing us the glimmer of light at the end of the avocado ice cream tunnel.

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