Up-to-date products and announcements from the food and beverage sector

Distribution partnership extended
XPO Logistics, a leading global provider of transport and logistics solutions, has renewed its contract with frozen food retail leader Iceland Foods for warehousing and distribution services. XPO will implement a phased strategy to increase growth capacity for the British supermarket chain, with scalable initiatives for technology, labor optimization, fleet optimization and cost savings. The renewal extends XPO’s partnership with Iceland to more than a decade.

XPO’s distribution solution combines six Iceland warehouses with supplemental capacity at XPO shared-user sites, and additional logistics and transport support as needed for peak demand. XPO manages approximately 3,000 colleagues at Iceland distribution centers in Warrington, Deeside, Enfield, Livingston and two in Swindon. The companies co-developed a behavioral safety programme for site colleagues, resulting in consecutive annual improvements in safety performance, including 2020, during COVID-19.

Delicious alternatives
International vegan food brand The Fry Family Food Co has announced the return of its critically acclaimed plant-based range to Ocado. After parting company with Ocado at the end of 2019, Fry’s is back due to popular demand with its classic range, which includes plant-based sausages, sausage rolls, burgers, nuggets and schnitzels.

Fry’s will also be launching its pea protein mince in Ocado – a UK-first listing for the brand. The new pea-based mince is packed with protein and non-GM and is the perfect partner for any burrito or spaghetti bolognaise and will retail exclusively at Ocado for £3.50.

Tammy Fry, international marketing director at The Fry Family Food Co, said: “We’re so thrilled Ocado has made the decision to re-stock Fry’s again, making the range even more easily accessible to people across the UK.

“We want to prove that plant-based eating doesn’t have to be about deprivation – you can still enjoy all of the delicious, mouth-watering dishes you always have, by swapping meat for plant-based alternatives which taste just as good, but are better for you and the environment.”

The Fry Family Food Co’s sister brands Oumph! and LikeMeat, part of the LIVEKINDLY Collective, also launched new products in Ocado this January. Oumph! Smoky Bits and Oumph! Balls, and LikeMeat’s Like Schnitzel and Like Nuggets were available to Ocado customers from January. The LIVEKINDLY Collective’s recently acquired No Meat brand is also available at Ocado.

Eggs-cellent credentials
British Lion eggs has launched a £1.3m marketing campaign for 2021 to drive awareness of the Lion mark and capitalize on unprecedented consumer demand for eggs in retail.

Olympic diver, foodie and parent, Tom Daley, will continue his role as the figurehead for British Lion eggs as he builds towards representing Great Britain at the Olympic Games this year. Daley, an advocate for healthy living, will front a digital ad campaign in partnership with health and food media outlets including BBC Good Food and Men’s Health, as well as creating and sharing Lion egg recipes with his seven million+ social media followers.

British Lion eggs is also tapping into the huge popularity of podcasts, sponsoring various food and health focused series, which will generate an estimate of 400k weekly impressions and reach an audience of which 70 per cent are aged 18-34. A partnership with inspirational digital food platform Tastemade will help to encourage consumers to experiment with new ways to enjoy this versatile food.

Respected nutritionists and dietitians will continue to work with British Lion eggs to leverage their food safety and nutritional benefits, targeting health professionals and consumers, across health professional and consumer media.

To communicate and educate new audiences about the FSA advice that only British Lion eggs should be consumed runny by vulnerable groups, a new partnership is being launched with Charlotte Stirling-Reed, a Registered Nutritionist and high-profile influencer with 204k followers on Instagram, as well as an advertising campaign with top parenting sites, including netmums.com. The long-standing partnership with Annabel Karmel, the best-selling author on baby food and nutrition, will also continue.

The campaign will also have a strong foodservice focus, with food safety professional Dr Lisa Ackerley continuing to work with British Lion eggs to highlight their benefits to EHOs and hospitality through social content, training and liaison with key industry influencers.

Time for tea
Famous family run tea company Ringtons along with its supply chain partner Infusion GB, one of the leading Herbal Tea packing manufacturers in UK, has decided to work with brand-new functional herbal tea brand Beau-T-Full Minds, after spotting a gap in the herbal tea market.

Beau-T-Full Minds founders include Sales Director Charlie Simpson-Daniel, a serial entrepreneur, York based entrepreneur and Managing Director at Beau-T-Full Minds, Tom Riddolls, former England rugby player James Simpson-Daniel and actor James Phelps, best known for his role in Harry Potter movies.

Beau-T-Full Minds, which launches in April 2021, has set its sights on establishing itself as a clear alternative in the herbal tea category, with five ‘better for you’ herbal teas and four coffees, all focusing on mental wellbeing. The range will launch with flavours such as Wide Awake Herbal Tea, Deep Sleep Herbal Tea, CBD Herbal Tea, Probotic Herbal Tea and Immunity-Herbal Teas plus coffees Manuka Honey, CBD Coffee, Lions Mane Coffee and Probiotic Coffee, all of which include active ingredients and herbal adaptogens to support all-round cognitive health.

Tom Riddolls commented: “We shared our vision for Beau-T-Full Minds after working with Ringtons and Infusion GB as part of the manufacturing supply chain and it soon became very clear they shared our passion and drive for a functional tea which encourages mental wellbeing, even more so during the pandemic and post Covid-19. This shared passion resulted in the agreement to go on an incredible journey together. Thebrand is 100% plant based plus 1p from every teabag sold will be donated to mental wellbeing charities, our aim to make the world a more beautiful place.”

Inclusivity and connectivity
Leading hospitality and retail design agency UXUS announce the details of Luna, a new interior concept for McDonald’s designed to bring people together in a welcoming, playful and shareable environment. UXUS have developed a unique design language for McDonald’s inspired by the circle as a symbol of inclusivity, unity and togetherness. Initially developed for the Chinese market, the Luna concept will now be rolled out globally.

The hospitality experience developed by UXUS breaks expectations of traditional décor by incorporating new circular and semi-circular seating typologies symbolizing inclusivity and connectivity, which allow people to come together in the round. Stools and free-seating encourage diners to shape their own experience, while layers of partitions and inviting ‘full-moon’ windows create transparency throughout the space, revealing the communal environment and connecting adjacent groups of diners.

UXUS has applied a new approach to materiality, color and texture to amplify a sense of discovery. Wooden finishes, textured vinyl upholstery, perforated steel and concrete-look laminate create an immersive environment that engages the senses. In addition, lighting incorporating curved shapes and circles as well as illuminated surfaces and down-lit walls create depth and a warm, welcoming environment.

The interior also features a playful take on McDonald’s iconic Golden Arches, with arch-inspired stools, bold graphics and lighting which reimagine iconic branded elements in surprising and unexpected ways.