Asian-inspired brand begins phased launch with three NEW products available in new heat-to-eat sections
itsu – the Asian-inspired healthy food brand – is launching three new chilled products, set to reinvigorate the front of store and ‘heat to eat’ supermarket fixtures, including lucky katsu hotsu’potsu, bao’buns and gourmet’gyoza.
The authentic restaurant-quality range is set to rollout in supermarkets nationwide and will be available in the front of store and chilled ready meal fixtures. It marks a major milestone for the food brand and is the first of an expansive rollout into the category this year.
The launch follows a year of strong growth for itsu’s supermarket range, growing at 59% YoY with a £21.3million turnover, well ahead of the UK grocery market which grew at 11.3%.
With the recent shift to hybrid working, itsu’s new range will meet post-pandemic consumer needs and the increasing demand for restaurant-quality, convenient, Asian-inspired lunch options. As this new way of working is set to continue, the ‘heat to eat’ category is expected to explode.
While one in five people in the UK miss Asian cuisine, 29% lack the confidence to make it at home. However, itsu’s new ranges in the food-to-go and chilled ready meal aisles are ideal for all occasions, whether its lunch, dinner or a snack. The convenience and quality will suit those continuing to work from home, in an office or a hybrid of both.
Available in food to go and chilled ready meal aisles, itsu will now be accessible to even more people. The new range comes in recyclable packaging and is made from authentic, healthy ingredients, sourced to provide beautiful, convenient, Asian-inspired meal solutions.
First to launch is the lucky katsu hotsu’potsu, available in Tesco now (RRP £2.75). hotsu’potsu is available as part of the Tesco meal deal, meaning itsu’s best-selling seaweed thins or prawn crackers and a drink make a full itsu meal for just £3.
The pot contains itsu’s best-selling vegetable fusion gyoza, rice noodles, vegetables and hand-crafted katsu broth – add hot water and microwave for a lunch ready in minutes. Direct from Tokyo, the katsu broth is made by blending traditional miso with herbs, spices & Japanese curry powder, providing people at home with an itsu favourite, in restaurant-quality.
Second to launch is a new range of chilled bao’buns and gourmet’gyoza, available in the chilled ready meals aisle of Waitrose from June 21st (RRP for six bao buns and three gyoza £3.50).
Inspired by the popular dishes in itsu restaurants, itsu bao buns are available in spicy veg and hoisin duck, both of which, pack a punch of flavour. The spicy veg bao are filled with tofu and an array of Asian inspired vegetables, while the hoisin duck bao are generously filled with a blend of duck, vegetables and hoisin sauce.
Microwavable in under a minute, itsu’s new chilled bao buns can be enjoyed as a light lunch or incorporated into a deluxe dinner.
itsu’s chicken & spring onion gourmet’gyoza comes with a sweet and tangy ponzu dipping sauce and a pair of wooden chopsticks, to provide people with an authentic, Asian-inspired eating experience. The delicious gyoza are microwaveable and ready in just one minute.
Julian Metcalfe, founder of itsu, says: “For years our restaurant customers have been asking us to make their favourite products available in the supermarket, but naturally they had to be perfect before we launched!
“It might seem like an obvious next step for a brand who serves fresh food to millions of people each year in our restaurants, but it’s taken us years to develop food to-go products that are just as incredible as the dishes we serve in our restaurants.
“When lockdown hit last year, we were spurred on and realised the world was going to shift permanently, so have been busy building out our new products to launch into the chilled ‘heat to eat’ section in supermarkets.
“With hybrid working on the rise, it looks like the ‘heat to eat’ category is a trend that is about to explode in the UK, and itsu is proud to be at the forefront of this food to-go revolution.”
itsu is aiming for 50% growth with its chilled innovation pipeline, this being the first of many first-to-markets in response to increasing demand for healthy, Asian food-to-go, firmly taking itsu beyond the ambient and frozen aisles.