Butterkist yoghurt

Butterkist is expanding its range with the launch of two new popcorn flavours, each of which the brand says is a market first.

Launching at the end of January, Butterkist Yogurt Coated Popcorn will be available in a 160g sharing bag (rsp: £1.49) and a 6x20g multipack (rsp: £1.69).

Butterkist said the flavour had been developed on the back of research showing that yoghurt-coated popcorn would appeal to consumers seeking light snacks with plenty of flavour [Fresh Insights September 2015] - a key driver in the growth of new entrants to the popcorn category in recent years.

On 15 February, it will be joined by temporary Easter SKU Hot Cross Bun Popcorn (rsp: £1.49/150g). The brand’s research found that 95% of consumers were interested in seasonal flavours of popcorn, and that limited edition Butterkist products were a driver of consumer interest in the brand.

“The popcorn market is forecast to reach £207m by 2017, buoyed by a growing legion of popcorn fans who are constantly seeking to build on their enjoyment with new taste experiences,” said senior brand manager Anjna Mistry. “As taste is at the heart of everything we do with Butterkist, our Yogurt Coated Popcorn will capture our customers’ imagination and enhance their experience. The innovation will stretch both the brand and category to drive increased excitement and engagement.

“Our first-to-the-market limited edition, meanwhile, offers a fantastic opportunity for retailers to drive sales as we head into a time of year when there is strong customer demand for sweet, novelty and seasonal products.”

Butterkist grew sales last year 43.8% to £30.6m [Nielsen 52 w/e 3 October 2015]. It is facing competition from a number of rapidly growing brands: Metcalfe’s Skinny Popcorn is up 63.3% to £10.8m, Proper Corn up 87.8% to £10.1m, and Tyrrells Poshcorn up 36.1% to £8.4m.