14 October 2008

Sharwood's launch microwave noodles

Premier Foods is set to shake-up the noodle market with the launch of its innovative Sharwood Microwave Noodles.

Premier Foods is set to shake-up the noodle market with the launch of its innovative Sharwood Microwave Noodles.

Sharwood's Microwave Noodles are a range of flavour infused noodles that are quick and easy to cook in the microwave in just two minutes. Available in five enticing flavours - sweet chilli, sweet & sour, rich soy & sesame, Thai lemongrass & coriander and plain – all of which are free from artificial flavours and preservatives.

Noodles today can be compared to rice five years ago. They are seen as difficult to cook and the flavours are not inspiring.  Sharwood's Microwave Noodles intend to grow the noodle market by making them more accessible to consumers and to mimic the success experienced in rice.  Micro–rice now holds a 41% share of total ambient rice sales and are growing at 24% in value. With 27% of noodle shoppers buying into the microwaveable category, launching Sharwood's microwave Noodles will present a huge sales opportunity for the brand and retailers alike.

Paul Bright, marketing controller for Sharwood's says: “The £25m  noodle market is currently static but there is a significant opportunity to add £3.5m to the category with the launch of a microwave noodle. The category requires exploration outside traditional offerings and new product development tailored to the changing needs of the consumer. A huge opportunity exists for noodles to grow incremental meal occasions and Sharwood's is responding to the increasing emphasis on quick and simple meal offerings. This unique proposition will deliver sustainable category growth by attracting new consumers to the market, whilst offering existing consumers a tasty new convenient format.”

As the key noodle brand accounting for almost half of the £25m market, Sharwood's recognises the chance to grow the noodles category through a more convenient format. The Sharwood's noodle range worth £10.8m and growing at 4.3% year on year, is divided into Chinese and Thai with both Wet and Dry product offerings.

Microwave Noodles are packaged in a 250g microwavable pouch with a 12 month shelf life.  The recommended retail price is £1.49 and they are in store from October 2008. The launch will be supported by a heavy weight marketing programme, plus in store sampling and trade promotions.


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