Beanz.jpgThere’s a quiet revolution going on in the world of baked beans, in case you didn’t know. Heinz, the market leader in tinned baked beans, have introduced Bloke’s beans, Hidden Veg beans and even snap-pots – single portions of beans in yogurt-style disposable plastic containers.
I owe my expanded knowledge of baked-bean R&D to an enlightening interview with Heinz UK & Ireland President, Dave Woodward, in the latest edition of Management Today.
The article illustrates the importance of understanding your customers’ concerns and requirements when trying to innovate. Take the Snap Pot, a pack of four microwaveable single portions of beans aimed at the consumer market. Woodward explains that the idea came from market feedback that at-home bean-eaters couldn’t be bothered washing up a pan after heating up beans, and that they were tired of finding half-full cans of mouldy beans in their fridges.
As a baked-bean fan myself, I’m particularly interested in the beans-with-cohones Bloke’s Beans range, which offers beans with bangers or spicy meatballs in tins with suitably ribald branding. Schools caterers will be more interested in the Hidden Veg range, which boosts kids’ vegetable intake by adding pureed veggies to the tomato sauce in tins of beans.
As far as I can tell from their website, neither the Bloke’s Beans nor the Hidden Veg range are available through Hotel Cateys sponsors, Heinz Foodservice. Shame – they sound like really good ideas.