Go nuts for snacks!

There is 30% less packaging in its seven pack range
There is 30% less packaging in its seven pack range

Fionnuala Carolan outlines the most notable new products in a constantly innovative crisps and snacks market, as well as the best performing staples.


Brand Central

20 June 2011

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crisps1The crisp and snack category in Ireland is one of the most profitable FMCG categories for retailers and has a value in excess of €197 million* according to Largo foods. Due to exciting new product launches and innovative, integrated, marketing campaigns designed to grab consumers’ attention, the category has changed dramatically over the past number of years.

Largo – Irish for crisps

Irish owned Largo Foods, based in Ashbourne, Co. Meath, is the largest snack-food company in Ireland and is very proud of sourcing over 30,000 tonnes of potatoes from Irish farmers annually, which equates to approximately 10% of the nation’s annual potato crop.

Largo Foods represents some of the most iconic snack-food brands including Tayto, Hunky Dorys, King and Perri. Together these four brands account for 49.1%* share of the Irish market.

Tayto still the number one crisp

Tayto OccasionsTayto remains Ireland’s number one crisp and snack brand with 30.8%* share of the market, while Tayto Cheese & Onion crisps are still the number one selling pack in the country.

From a product development perspective, Tayto has placed a strong focus on the adult sharing category as it recognises the ever increasing move by consumers into larger pack formats.  Its ongoing development of the Tayto Bistro and Occasions offerings has seen a massive 72%* year on year growth for the products. In order to further capitalise on this consumer trend, it has recently launched Tayto Occasions Whole Grain Chips which is a highly innovative product and the first of its kind in the Irish market. While similar in appearance to tortilla chips, the product offers a healthier alternative to the traditional tortilla offering. Initial consumer response has been extremely positive and multipack and impulse formats will shortly be introduced into the market.

O'Donnells  O’Donnell’s Authentic Hand Cooked Crisps launched less than a year ago, is the fastest growing ‘kettle-cooked’ brand in Ireland. Currently, the brand has already broken the €1 million sales barrier. Distributed nationwide by Largo Foods, O’Donnell’s is the number two ‘kettle cooked’ brand in Ireland, after Tayto Bistro, and is contributing to growth in the total ‘kettle cooked’ category. 

The O’Donnell family has been working the land on Seskin Farm, Co. Tipperary for over seven generations and has mastered the art of cultivating the perfect potato. These centuries of experience have been utilised to craft the finest artisan, hand cooked crisps. O’Donnell’s Hand Cooked Crisps are free from MSG and GM ingredients. The product uses natural flavours and they are cooked in 100% sunflower oil.

Tayto Mini Me'sMaximizing on the increasing popularity of the existing flavours O’Donnell’s Mature Irish Cheese & Red Onion and O’Donnell’s Irish Cider Vinegar & Sea Salt, and working in collaboration with artisan Tipperary food producer, The Scullery, the brand has just launched another 50g flavour O’Donnell’s Sweet Chilli.

Originally launched available in 50g offerings, O’Donnell’s has also branched into the sharing category with the release of the new 125g bags available in O’Donnell’s Mature Irish Cheese & Red Onion and O’Donnell’s Irish Cider Vinegar & Sea Salt flavours.

Tayto Love BitesRecent introductions in the children’s and healthier categories have appeared in the market with the Mr. Tayto shaped product called Tayto Mini Me’s and a low fat snack called Tayto Love Bites which contains only 92 calories per pack.

Underscoring the very active product campaigns is the highly innovative strategy to open a Mr. Tayto themed visitor attraction at the company’s headquarters at Ashbourne, Co. Meath. “Tayto Park” is a 55 acre visitor centre filled with beautifully landscaped gardens and an array of exotic animals. It is an excellent family experience where children can be entertained with an array of activities and parents can relax over a bite to eat at the beautifully crafted 18,000 sq ft Tayto Lodge which houses a restaurant and shops.  Visitors now also have the opportunity to join the Tayto Factory Tour where they can see firsthand the manufacture of Ireland’s favourite crisp.

Hunky Dorys Hand Cooked CrispsHunky Dorys is the number one crinkle-cut crisp

Hunky Dorys, the number one crinkle-cut crisp on the Irish market, commands a crisps market share of 15.3%, valuing the brand at over €18m.  As Ireland’s fastest growing crisp brand it outsells its nearest competitor within the crinkle cut category five fold. The brand has been active with product development with a range extension to its core offering with the introduction of a Smokey Bacon flavour.  Further brand development has also resulted in the launch of Hunky Dorys Hand Cooked Crisps in Mature Irish Cheddar Cheese & Spring Onion and Ranch Roasted Buffalo varieties.

King of the city

King CrispsKing crisps continue to be a firm favourite in the Dublin heartland and proudly claims the number one best-selling impulse pack in the capital.  It seems that the success of the brand continues to attract new followers across the country with share of sales outside Dublin growing from 20% to now over 45%.  King Crisps, affectionately known as ‘The Crisp Lovers’ Crisp’, continues to perform well in a market share context with a category share of 10.2%, valuing the brand at over €12m. Amazingly, the range which only consists of three varieties namely Cheese & Onion, Salt & Vinegar and a healthy option called King Lites Cheese & Onion which was awarded a best in class ‘Four Stars’ – ‘A Regal Choice’ recognition in a recent Irish Times Survey.

Perri Pickled RingsNew release for old favourite Perri

One of Ireland’s oldest and most loved snack brands, Perri, which includes Perri Hot Lips, Perri Banshee Bones and the ever popular Perri Rings range, were refreshed with an update of the entire brand identity and packaging. Plans for further product development include the forthcoming release of a Perri Pickled Onion Ring flavour and a new big eat 50gram Perri Hot Lips offering.

*AC Nielsen. Markettrack, Value MAT, 17th April 2011.
** Irish Times, June 6th 2011

There is 30% less packaging in its seven pack range

There is 30% less packaging in its seven pack range

Make a perfect snack choice with KP  

The KP brand is valued at €23m according to the latest AC Nielsen data. The KP snack portfolio includes consumer favourites Hula Hoops, Skips, Rancheros, Meanies, McCoys  and of course KP Nuts too.

Hula Hoops, Ireland’s leading snack brand is made with 100% sunflower oil and contains no artificial colours, flavours or MSG. Now Hula Hoops has relaunched its multipack seven pack range in 30% less packaging but with the same amount of Hula Hoops. This environmental initiative is welcomed by consumers and retailers alike as it means less packaging to dispose of and more space efficiency for retailers instore. The new environmentally friendly multipacks are being supported with an above the line TV campaign during the launch period. There are also two new multipacks additions to the range – Sweet Chilli and Sour Cream and Chive bringing innovation to the snack category.

McCoys Crisps are the number two ridged crisp in the market and the brand continues to grow in popularity. Available in Flame Grilled Steak, Salt & Vinegar, Cheese & Onion and Bacon Sizzler. McCoys Crisps are cooked using a unique recipe. McCoys are currently on promotion with a two for one curry meal deal on pack and impactful Indian themed floor displays. This year the meal deal is available on both impulse and multipack formats and across all varieties. Full details of the promotion are available at www.mycoys.co.uk.
Meanies and Mega Meanies are worth just over E4m
Skips, Rancheros and Meanies are all made in Ireland by Robert Roberts in Tallaght. Skip’s properties make it a strong favourite with its unique shape and fizzibly, melty properties. Rancheros Bacon flavoured potato snack remains a much loved snack with wide consumer appeal. Skips and Rancheros are available in impulse, multipack and sharing formats offering the perfect solution for every snacking occasion.

The Meanies brand including Meanies and Mega Meanies  is worth just over €4m and is experiencing strong growth year on year. Meanies loved for the distinctive taste and playful shape are available in handipacks, multipack and now new sharing bags. The brand has recently launched an exciting new flavour –Mega Meanies Hot & Spicy, and now due to strong success this new recipe is being launched in a share bag too.

JawsNew to the market and also produced in Tallaght is the recently launched Jawz brand. Jawz is already making its mark accounting for almost 1% (0.8%) of impulse crisp and snack sales so far this year. Jawz is available in 50g bags of Bacon and Cheese and Onion flavours. This tasty big bag snack offers consumers excellent value for money in these cash strapped times. The new brand also has a website with fun games and interesting facts  available at www.jawz.ie.

KPKP nuts make a perfect snack choice and are bursting with fibre and protein as well as vitamins and minerals. KP nuts are available in grocery and impulse 50g bags and in Salted, Dry Roast, Chilli and Salt & Vinegar varieties. KP Chilli and S&V launched almost a year ago and continue to bring growth to the nuts category.

Pot Noodle leads the market

Pot Noodle continues to be Ireland’s leading Pot Snacks brand with 40.1% market share. Pot Noodle is growing volume share faster than the market growth rate, emphasising the overall strength of the brand*. 

Pot Noodle offers a wide variety of choice to consumers, with a great range of flavours. Chicken and Mushroom and Original Curry lead the way as the nation’s favourite variants. The oriental flavours, including Chinese Chow Mein and Sweet and Sour, continue to experience strong growth indicative of the strength of the whole portfolio.

This year will see the launch of Pot Noodle Bombay Bad Boy

This year will see the launch of Pot Noodle Bombay Bad Boy

For those looking for more from their Pot Noodle, the popular King Pot is also available in Chicken and Mushroom and Original Curry Flavour.

The big news for 2011 is the launch of Pot Noodle Bombay Bad Boy which will be replacing Southern Fried Chicken throughout all retail outlets in Ireland. 100% of its ATL campaign this year will be across a digital medium where the company can actively build a conversation with a broad consumer base. Pot Noodle will also be engaging in BTL sampling initiatives throughout the year.

* Source: AC Nielsen (Extended Scantrack , 2011)

Kelkin keeping you healthy

Kelkin is an Irish company which has been providing wholesome, natural and healthy foods since 1976. Kelkin is an expert when it comes to healthy eating and understands that snacks can make up an important part of our daily calorie intake.
Kelkin offers a wide range of healthy snack options including the following; Kelkin Rice Cake Snack Bar, Kelkin Popcorn Kernels and Kelkin Mini Triple Berry Yoghurt Rice Cakes and the latest addition to its unique, yoghurt rice cake range.

Kelkin’s Healthy Eating & Living Roadshow kicked off at the ‘Adventure Weekend’ in the RDS Dublin, 20 May. The roadshow will hit a number of festivals and shopping centres nationwide between May-July 2011. See www.kelkin.ie for details.



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