Campbell Soup Company is the latest food and beverage maker to embrace consumer demand for ingredient transparency by announcing it will stop using artificial colors and flavors in all of its products sold in North America by 2018. Speaking during an investor call, Campbell’s President and CEO Denise Morrison outlined plans to change many of its recipes, to build stronger connections with consumers and to increase the company’s focus on faster-growing categories, such as health and well-being and developing markets.
Consumers will have access a wide range of information about how Campbell’s foods and beverages are made and the choices behind ingredients, particularly in its core U.S. Soup, Sauces and Beverages portfolio. A new website—www.whatsinmyfood.com—provides detail on several of Campbell’s top brands, such as iconic Campbell’s Condensed Tomato and Chicken Noodle soups, Slow Kettle Style and Healthy Request soups and Campbell’s Dinner Sauces. Over the next year, Campbell will expand its efforts to include all major brands in the United States and Canada, with plans to expand it globally over the next three years.
Need proof clean label is here to stay? More than 20 percent of new U.S. products tracked in 2014 featured a clean-label positioning, up from 17 percent in 2013.
To address this, Campbell’s is making several key changes to its recipes and outlined plans to increase its organic offerings. Based on feedback from parents, the company will simplify the recipes of existing condensed soups for kids, removing ingredients such as added MSG and continuing to make the soup with no preservatives, no artificial colors and no artificial flavors. The first updated range of kids’ soups is expected to hit U.S. shelves in August.
The company plans to remove artificial colors and flavors from nearly all of its North American products by the end of fiscal 2018. Campbell’s also plans to move away from using high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) in certain products, including the complete line of Pepperidge Farm fresh breads by the end of fiscal 2017, as well as most new products launching in fiscal 2016 in its Americas Simple Meals and Beverages portfolio.
To meet the growing demand for simple food, Campbell’s will increase its organic offerings with line extensions in its core portfolio. Building on Campbell’s Organic soups that launched in January, the company will introduce Campbell’s Organic soup for kids in three kid-friendly chicken noodle varieties in August. The new organic soups for kids will be non-GMO and use ingredients sourced from certified American organic farms.
In fiscal 2016, Plum will launch GrowWell, a range of purees which provide nutrients from ingredients like chia, Greek yogurt and sunflower seed butter. Plum will also build on the successful Mighty range of snacks, introducing new Mighty Veggies and Mighty Sticks for tots on-the-go, and further develop its successful MashUps fruit sauce and snacks lines.
Campbell’s also plans to launch Pepperidge Farm Goldfish made with organic wheat in fiscal 2016. The current Goldfish whole grain line of crackers also will expand to include new varieties.
Food Product Design has been following the clean-label movement for some time and recently addressed how clean label is becoming more pervasive in soups and sauces, as consumers look for easy-to-understand ingredients, which creates challenges for product developers charged with creating great-tasting products that don’t compromise on texture, viscosity, flavor or stability. Download the free “Clean-Label Soups & Sauces" Digital Issue to find out more.