Successful product launch
By Emma Hanby - 24 September 2015
The five key elements to a successful product launch Did you know that over 8,000 new products are launched in UK retail stores every year? But how many of these remain on shelves post launch. To maximise the chance of a successful product launch and longevity in the market place many aspects need to be considered as part of new product development. Here are five:
1. Selecting the right ingredients:Ingredient identification and characteristics is key to ensuring functionality. Successful product development requires a robust understanding of the underpinning science of these ingredients, for example how the structure of an ingredient can help to predict its ability to respond to processing and cooking as well as how the final product tastes.
2. Scale-up:Developing new products is likely to begin with small-scale bench-top work. If this stage is successful then it is ok to move on to the next stage of development. The challenge then becomes: how to go from a small, experimental production run to produce enough material for plant trials - without factory down time. It is possible that early successes noted during bench-scale development will not work in quite the same way during commercial production. Pilot scale work may highlight these and allow them to be properly considered. The development phase should also include microbiological consideration for safety and stability, recipe design or reformulation to maximise taste and the evaluation of changes in colour and texture during storage.
3. Claims and messaging:When designing a new food or drink product there are legislative issues to be aware of and comply with. It is best to consider these from the outset as their significance can be fundamental. Legislation changes frequently and keeping up to date is key to being ahead of the game in new product development (NPD).
Three major areas need to be considered from a legislative point of view:
- Are the ingredients proposed permitted for use?
- Is the labelling lawful?
- Once developed, is the product safe to eat within the stated shelf life?
4. Cooking instructions:Cooking or re-heating is an area often overlooked, but is a key element in the delivery of safe, high quality foods. The selection of re-heating instructions using appropriate appliances can have a huge impact on the nutritional content and organoleptic quality of the food. Careful design of the product with the re-heating instructions in mind can lead to shorter heating times, giving less time for nutrient destruction, less energy required during the re-heating process and a better quality product, as overheating areas will be less likely. Considering the re-heating of products during the design stages is far simpler than having to re-formulate and re-package a product after full scale production.
5. Pleasing your consumer:One very important stage in product development is the opinion of the consumer. Consumer studies enable the collection of information on what the customer wants, what they think they like, what they actually like and whether or not your product addresses that need. These studies can be used for more than just the food or drink product. The packaging is just as important. There are a number of methods that can be used to measure consumer opinion, including qualitative consumer studies such as focus groups, depth interviews and observational studies, as well as quantitative consume studies like hedonic tests.
So if you want to explore launching a new or reformulated food or drink product Campden BRI can maximise your chance of retailer listing and longevity in the market. Please do get in touch.