Morning Foods is claiming a market first with a rice alternative made from oats.
Called Oat Made, the NPD is made from ‘groats’ – the whole kernels that are removed from the husk – rather than cut or rolled oats.
They were “from a textural point of view, very like rice” and “similar to quinoa”, said Morning Foods MD James Lea.
The brand will debut with six microwaveable vegan products: three pouches and three meal pots (rsp: £1.75-£2.25/250g).
The pouches are: Savoury Original, Golden Vegetable and Mexican Style. Its meal pots, meanwhile, will roll out in Katsu Curry, Sweet Chilli and Mexican Style flavours.
They will launch in December, with a view to roll into world food aisles in early 2022.
The product range, which was the result of a two-year development period, had a “nutritional advantage” over other meal accompaniments, said Lea.
This was because oats provided dietary fibre, nutrients, micro-nutrients and beta-glucan, he said.
The oats used to make it were grown locally and relied on rainwater rather than irrigation, making the range more sustainable, he added.
Morning Foods is set to plough a “six-figure sum” into a marketing campaign and various activity intended to build familiarity of the product range with consumers.
It wanted to “steer away from anything that associates it with breakfast” in the branding and has already had “quite a lot of interest from retailers”, said Lea.
It comes after Morning Foods has spent recent months expanding beyond its porridge oat heartlands.
In July, it entered the home baking category with a trio of organic oat-based products.
The trio – Oat Flour, Oatmeal and Jumbo Oats – would meet the “surge in consumer demand for home baking ingredients”, said Morning Foods.