Frito-Lay North America hosted its first Research Chefs Association event at its Culinary Innovation Center in Plano, TX in August.
Focus was on developing salty snacks along touch points that include convenience, shelf stability and price point. The company is changing its profiles to reflect current market conditions. For example, it recently added Tapatío-flavored Doritos, Fritos and Ruffles SKUs flavored with a salsa picante that is manufactured by the Tapatío Hot Sauce Co. in Vernon, CA. The brand is popular with Mexican-Americans in the Southwest, where consumers often bring along their own 5 oz. bottle to sprinkle on their food.
Beyond adding flavors, the company has to look at more fundamental changes. Its Rolled Gold pretzel brand has been around for nearly 100 years, but F-L feels the concept needs “freshening.” Various ideations pointed to a cinnamon raisin pretzel, but when both flavor components proved technologically unfeasible in a conventional pretzel, the company developed a braided pretzel flavored with raisin juice concentrate.