Media

22 February 2017

Working with Nissin on Batchelors

Our brand new Batchelors Super Noodles in a pot were developed together with Nissin Foods, a strategic partner and major shareholder in our business since 2016.

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This is one of the first successes of Premier Foods' collaboration with Nissin. And we thought we'd share how and why we developed this exciting new product. But first a little more about Nissin...

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The originators of instant noodles

Nissin Foods Products Co., Ltd. was founded in Japan in 1958 by Momofuku Ando. Recalling the food shortages in Japan after World War II, Ando was inspired to develop a quality, convenient ramen product that was accessible to everyone. Chicken ramen became the first instant ramen noodle of its kind and soon became a staple in Japan. 

Momofuku Ando had a philosophy that 'the world will find peace when there is enough food for everyone'. Click below to watch 'The Originators', the story of Momofuku Ando's successful efforts to create both instant noodles and cup-type instant noodles, branded “Cup Noodles”.  An amazing invention that led to the birth of Nissin Foods.

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Today, Nissin Foods has global revenues of around £3.3 billion and makes a wide range of noodle products, sold in over 80 countries. Its biggest brand, Cup Noodle, was invented in 1971 following a trip to the US when Momofuko Ando noticed Americans enjoying ramen noodles in a cup rather than in a bowl with chopsticks. And last year Nissin sold its 40 BILLIONTH Cup Noodles since its launch!

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Nissin has even put noodles in space when in 2005 Space Shuttle astronaut Soichi Noguchi ate their specially designed 'Space Ram' noodles in orbit!

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The inspiration for Super Noodles in a pot

Modern life has driven the need for more convenience in the food we eat. With the rise in single person eating occasions and 'food on the go', Batchelors Super Noodles comes at the right time for British consumers.

Mark Alldred, Grocery Marketing Controller picks up the story: “Our research identified that while our existing Batchelors Super Noodles are recognised by 95% of the UK population, over half felt they weren’t as convenient as pot snacks. 

The opportunity for Batchelors Super Noodles to move into a more convenient format was clear. The market trend had been moving in this direction for some time and this was further reinforced by our own research which showed consumers universally loved the idea!

The challenge was to replicate that unique Super Noodle flavour and texture in an instant pot and make our brand available for more consumers to enjoy at more occasions. Our partnership with Nissin presented a real opportunity.”
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Working together on Batchelors

During 2016 a six-strong Premier Foods team travelled to Japan to visit ‘the Wave’, Nissin’s Global Innovation Research Center and Global Food Safety Institute. It was the first step in working together on the development of our Batchelors Super Noodles in a Pot.


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Fiona Dunleavey, Grocery Research & Development Director picks up the story: “It was amazing to spend time with our Nissin partners at the WAVE. What they don’t know about instant noodles isn’t worth knowing!
 
We co-developed the new product in just two months, drawing on Nissin’s technical expertise and our extensive knowledge of the UK consumer. We worked to produce a product that delivers the great tastes of our Super Noodle range in a more convenient format. Unsurprisingly feedback from tasting sessions has been extremely positive."
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Our collaboration with Nissin resulted in a bespoke recipe for our Batchelors Super Noodles in a pot, created to complement our well-known and much-loved Super Noodles flavours. We also arranged with Nissin for them to make the products at their super-modern, highly automated facilities in Hungary.


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Developing the right pot

Whilst co-development of the product and organising production with Nissin was in full swing, our Premier Foods team back in the UK set to work to design and produce packaging that would be sure to catch consumers’ attention in store. 

Sharon Waller, Batchelors Brand Manager shares the background: “Our objective was to stand out on-shelf and drive trial of our new format. We utilised our distinctive brand assets and what we'd learnt from our research to inform our new packaging design. We know consumers love the name, logo and blue colour palette of the Super Noodles brand, so we wanted to replicate this in a pot format. 

We reviewed packaging mock-ups in our in-house virtual reality merchandising studio, PRISM. The pack built on the strength of the Batchelors Super Noodles brand by transferring that trust, identity and familiarity into a new format that stands out on shelf, clearly communicates what it is and why people should give it a go.”
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Now in store with our customers

You’ll find our delicious Batchelors Super Noodles in a pot range in major UK retailers nationwide. 
 

Lynne Evans, Business Unit Controller, tells us how our supermarket customers responded to the new range: “The trade response to our new Batchelors Super Noodle pots range has been phenomenal. The launch has been described by several retailers as “Game Changing” and there's huge excitement.

We're starting with a strong launch in our biggest supermarket customers through early Spring, and will quickly extend availability to convenience stores later this year, with marketing support to help build demand.”
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Fast and easy, tasty food on the go

We're excited that our Super Noodles in a pot are now available to our consumers. They couldn't be easier to make - all it takes is boiling water and a stir, and in four minutes you’ve got a delicious on the go snack that suits busy modern lifestyles.

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Batchelors Super Noodles in a pot are available in the classic Super Noodles flavours - Chicken, Curry, Bacon and BBQ Beef. You can get hold of them from February/March 2017 in major retailers including Asda, Morrisons, Sainsburys and Tesco.

A great match and a bright future

The partnership between Premier Foods and Nissin opens up many mutually beneficial opportunities to drive growth for both companies, in the UK and in markets overseas.
 

Hannah Dickinson, Strategic Relationship Director, tells us more: “Since partnering with Nissin last year, we’ve been working closely on a number of projects. As well as our new Batchelors Super Noodles in a pot, we’re excited to be taking on distribution of Nissin’s Soba noodle products across the UK Major Retailers. We’re also working with Nissin to access their extensive American presence to help us expand availability for our Sharwood’s products in the US market. Nissin have been great to work with and the scene is set for a really beneficial collaboration.” Hannah-Dickinson-v2.jpg
 

We’re enjoying working together with Nissin. It's great to see our Batchelors Super Noodles in a pot hitting supermarket shelves and we're excited by our other plans for the future, including UK and overseas distribution. It's the start of a beautiful friendship! Watch this space…

Read our press release about the new range here.



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