Cannabis in the Wellness Space

Cannabis in the Wellness Space

Image Source: Mondo   With recreational marijuana legalized in 9 states, and medical in 29, there’s been a huge influx of cannabis infused food products. But customers are chasing more than just a high these days – cannabis is more commonly being used as an ingredient in wellness forward brands. Enter a world of well curated, function-focused brands which feature THC, CBD and hemp as ingredients to fulfill a variety of purposes.   Image Source: Kikoko The combination of cannabis with other healing foods can create effective natural remedies for everyday maladies. By using different levels of THC (the compound responsible for the high), and CBD (which helps to alleviate pain, anxiety and other issues), products can be formulated for specific purposes. Case in point, Kikoko offers a line of cannabis infused teas which are individually created to reduce pain, aid sleep, increase libido and boost mood. Prominent call-outs on the packaging specify whether the product contains low, medium or high THC levels so that the consumer may make an informed decision about what kind of effects to expect. Similarly, Stillwater’s cannabis teas and coffee are marketed as “The Natural Way to Manage Daily Stress”, and are prominently labeled with THC content on front of package (a low 2.5MG dose). Mondo is cannabis sold in powder form, allowing the consumer to precisely measure the dose they’d like to consume in order to experience natural anxiety relief, without sacrificing the alertness and productivity necessary to carry out daily tasks.   Image Source: Weller Many of these products lend themselves to regular use, much like a vitamin or other natural supplement – often,...
Premium Snacks Increase in C-Stores

Premium Snacks Increase in C-Stores

When stopping by a convenience store for a snack, it’s typical to be met with a selection of processed, sugar laden and high sodium choices. Big food brands have dominated these spaces for as long as we can remember. However, as consumers are leaning toward more online retail options, c-store shelves are starting to make room for more products that cater to individual lifestyles. Staples like jerky, sports drinks, coffee and candy remain stable in the space, but more premium alternative options are being introduced to the mix. Personalization is shaping the future of the convenience food industry. Fresh food options are getting dressed up from the highly processed clamshell packaged sandwiches and microwave burritos typically found in convenience stores. Retailers like GetGo and Wawa now offer made-to-order fare for any time of day – all accessible via touch screen kiosks. Even airport retailers are upping the quality of their offerings. No longer limited to conventional snacks and chain meal options, travellers can now expect a wide variety of curated foods at CIBO Express Gourmet Markets. CIBO embraces established and emerging brands alike for a premium food and beverage experience on-the-go. In addition to being threatened by online retail, c-stores are experiencing direct competition in the form of Bodega – a fledgling company which sets up location specific pantries that appeal to the demographics of those particular areas. “The idea is to preempt what people might need, then use machine learning to constantly reassess the 100 most-needed items in that community.” (Fast Company) This would negate the need to visit a storefront, as the most demanded product per location...
The Future of Synthetic Food

The Future of Synthetic Food

We’re in a time and place where nut milks and natural sweeteners are the norm. Born out of the desire for alternatives, the food system is constantly being pushed forward by innovations. Synthetic is on the opposite side of the spectrum from organically grown, but there’s enough drive behind some of these products to shift perceptions about these man-made foods. Meat alternatives have been on the rise, showcasing largely unheard of ingredients that rival the texture of meat, shoving aside the soy laden options that dominated pre-prepared vegan fare for so long. Yet, there hasn’t been a bonafide replacement for the taste and texture that natural meat offers… Until now. Enter “clean meat”. Memphis Meats Inc. is by stepping the need to raise and slaughter livestock by creating a meat with cell cultures. Producing this at a mass scale would mitigate the issues that the current meat industry struggles with today, such as energy and water usage, as well as food safety. This new meat is slated to be similar in cost to traditional meat. Wine is an ancient and beloved drink. Today, its scale of production taps into a lot of precious resources to grow the grapes from which it is made. Ava Winery is producing synthetic wine that comes with all the fragrance and alcoholic buzz as your favorite wine, but that uses a fraction of the resources that natural wine does. The company advocates for transparency, sustainability and cost efficiency. While synthetic food businesses are seeing a bright future, companies are experimenting in other innovative ways to shift what food can do. Miso paste is traditionally...
Beyond The Shoreline Reimagines Seaweed Snacking

Beyond The Shoreline Reimagines Seaweed Snacking

At the mention of eating seaweed, the strips of nori which cradle our sushi rolls immediately come to mind. As do those strangely textured, crunchy yet melt in your mouth roasted seaweed sheets. As a the main ingredient of a gourmet dish, or a go-to protein rich snack? Hardly. Seaweed has long been overlooked as a viable food source in America, but is now fighting its way into superfood status. The Future of Farming is in the Ocean Industrialized fishing has taken a toll on ecosystems of the ocean, chasing fish away and leaving fisherman jobless. That’s what led Bren Smith to found Greenwave, an initiative which works to train unemployed fisherman into sea farmers who grow different kinds of seaweed and shellfish. These restorative species provide a highly sustainable form of food production, and positively impact ocean conditions by soaking up carbon and nitrogen that threaten aquatic ecosystems. Inspired by this, Beyond the Shoreline has begun creating innovative kelp based snacks that step outside the nori sheet box. Their first product, kelp jerky, has yet to be released but promises to sidestep the issue of appetite appeal. The American palate may not yet be prepared to embrace the slimy, fish flavored plant at face value, so moving forward with a familiar form of snack is a huge step in the right direction. But what’s spurring the movement to bring this abundant crop from ocean to table in the first place? Good for You Kelp, the unlikely hero of the sea, has more to offer than expected. “Nori contains more vitamin C than orange juice, more calcium than milk, and more protein than soybeans. And it might surprise those of us on the hunt for...
Interact Work at Fancy Foods Show 2017

Interact Work at Fancy Foods Show 2017

When we attended this year’s Summer Fancy Foods show, we were proud to witness several of our very own clients showcasing fresh new packaging design. Keep an eye out for these fantastic products rolling out in stores this year! ONE CULTURE FOODS   FATTY SUNDAYS     BOW TIES TILLEN FARMS BIENA 4505 MEATS   MAMA GERALDINE’S REVO MODERN MILL WANDERING...
Trends Spotted in the Netherlands

Trends Spotted in the Netherlands

Ever wonder what the inside of a shop inside Amsterdam looks like? Now you can get a little taste! Our intern Sydney took a trip to the Netherlands recently, and she took some snaps of awesome packaging that she saw. Here are a couple trends she spotted abroad. JUST ADD ______   There were a lot of pre-packaged goods that combined ingredients for ready made drinks and snacks. Teas with sweetener loaded onto a spoon waiting to be mixed into a cup of hot water were a favorite. “Festival in a Bottle” was an innovative way to add some excitement to a plain bottle of liquor with dehydrated fruits and spices. And for a delightfully simple mix-it-yourself refreshment, there were kits that included everything you’d need for a fresh gin & tonic.     QUITE THE CHARACTER The Dutch are embracing bright and bold colors, in contrast the modern packaging we typically see in the States. These eye-catching hues were seen in shelves all over stores. There were chocolate bars that sported vibrant, contrasting patterns that worked together in perfect chaos. In addition, there were a lot of whimsical illustrations and characters – even in products that aren’t necessarily marketed toward children. The shifty eyes on bottles of Karma Kombucha couldn’t be ignored when walking past the refrigerated section!      IN THE SPIRIT OF TRANSPARENCY One trend that’s clearly a hit across cultures is transparency – both in the literal, visual execution of packaging solutions, but also in the key messaging that brands are sending. The desire to eat “clean” has spurred a movement that pushes companies to lay everything out on the table – particularly ingredients. It...