Growing consumer demand for hot food that can be eaten on the move is opening up new profit opportunities for micro snacks stockists.


“Consumers of all ages are now looking to eat hot, easy to prepare snacks when they’re out and about,” says John Armstrong, Marketing Director of Kepak Convenience Foods, the UK’s leading supplier of micro snacks.

“Shoppers are snacking more throughout the day and micro snacks such as market-leading Rustlers enable retailers to offer consumers quick, hot, tasty food that, with simple cooking solutions, can be heated on the premises.”

Armstrong adds that it’s important for retailers to stock the key brands that are sought by young adults. Rustlers’ core consumers are 16-34 year olds – perfect for stores with a large young adult population nearby.

This year Kepak is broadening the appeal of Rustlers, the nation’s favourite micro-snacking brand*1, with the launch of two great-tasting panini products.

The new panini lines are Chicken & Pesto (flame grilled chicken with mozzarella and a pesto mayonnaise) and Pepperoni (slices of pepperoni with mozzarella and a tomato and herb sauce).

Both products feature an rrp of £2.29, merchandised in outers of 4.

Kepak Marketing Director John Armstrong says panini products are now ‘mainstream’ and so widely available in foodservice that introducing panini to Rustlers – and driving the growth of panini in retail – is a ‘natural next step’.

Retailers can also capitalise on the growing consumer demand for hot food to go with a Kepak branded microwave or ‘Hot Snack Station’. Both are low cost and have been proven to increase sales of micro snacks by almost 300%, without the concerns over waste associated with a hot food counter.

“Whilst many retailers are looking to attract more shoppers by offering hot food to go, not every outlet has the space or staffing levels to run a hot food counter,” adds Armstrong.

“A microwave provides an easy-to-manage solution to develop a hot food to go offering and takes up very little space. For retailers with more space, we’ve developed a compact ‘Hot Snack Station’ which is pre-programmed to cook the best-selling Rustlers SKUs, can be used to cook any microwaveable products and comes with a built-in bin to keep the surrounding area tidy.”

The Kepak branded microwave costs just £140 plus VAT. Hot Snack Station stands with microwaves are available at £500, plus VAT, with the stand only available at £360 plus VAT. Orders can be placed with R H Hall on 01296 663400.

*1 IRI Total Market 52 & 12 w/e 31st Jan 2015

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