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US: Nielsen lists breakthrough food-beverage innovation products

“There is not a clear recipe for success,” said Rob Wengel, senior vice president of the Nielsen Innovation Practice. “Consumers are the judge of what’s an innovation and what’s not.”

In fact, only about 15 percent of new consumer products are successful enough to stick around for two years, Wengel said, referring to products in consumer categories such as food, beverages, household and personal products and pet food.

Angry Orchard Hard Cider, The Boston Beer Co.
The makers of Samuel Adams beer launched Angry Orchard cider nationally in 2012, after seeing strong results in a launch in select markets in the second half of 2011. Cider sales have been growing in general, helped by the gluten-free trend. Two-year sales: $175-$185 million (June 23, 2014)

Of 3,463 products launched in 2012, only 14 – or less than 0.5 percent — met Nielsen’s criteria for distinctiveness, relevance and endurance. Criteria include generating a minimum of $50-million in US sales in the first year and hitting at least 90 percent of the first year’s sales level in the second year.

Breakthrough products often come with higher prices, which help lift revenue for manufacturers and retailers. Two-thirds of the 2014 winners were commanded premium prices, according to Nielsen. The products likely found and filled a consumer need in a way that topped products already out in the market, the firm said.

Successful products also often had big launch campaigns including sampling and in-store marketing to help people find the new items.

“Breakthrough leaders are looking at the same consumers and the same markets, but the way they look enables them to see things that others miss,” Nielsen said in its report.

This is the third time Nielsen has issued a list of Breakthrough Innovation products. Many of the companies on this year’s list are repeat winners. Procter & Gamble, the world’s largest household products maker, leads the pack with nine winners, including three in this year’s list.

Kraft and Mondelez, which split into two separate companies in 2012, each has a product on the list.

Caption above: Bud Light Lime Ritas, Anheuser-Busch
Anheuser-Busch’s previous attempt to enter the pre-mixed margarita business, where there were other brands to choose from, did not succeed. The Bud Light Lime Ritas, meant to be served over ice, started with an idea from Asia, where some drinkers pour beer over ice, allowing it to cool during power outages and treating it more like a cocktail than a beer. The product sold more than $500-million worth in two years, and over 70 percent of that revenue came through category expansion, which Nielsen calls “staggering.” Two-year sales: $700-$710-million (June 23, 2014)

To view all the products, click here

Source: Chicago Tribune