CHICAGO -- Pierre Foods is rolling out a line of bite-size twin-pack Mini convenience hot sandwiches in five lunch and two breakfast varieties. They're designed to enable operators to meet the desire of contemporary patrons for lighter, value-priced "mini" food options. The company noted that selections of this sort have increased 143% in menu mentions over the past three years.
More substantial than a snack and more convenient than a meal, Pierre Minis are formulated with restaurant-quality ingredients and hearth-baked buns optimized for microwave rethermalization to deliver popular full-size flavor. Available in dual-ovenable preprinted film (24 twin-packs per case) or microwaveable preprinted butcher-paper packaging (12 twin-packs per case), they're positioned to attract new consumers and increase meal occasions.
The line presently includes cheeseburgers, along with Southern-style chicken, grilled chicken club, spicy breaded chicken and boneless BBQ pork rib sandwiches, and two breakfast items: sausage, egg and cheese and bacon, egg and cheese. The sandwich twin-packs weigh between 4.9 oz. and 6.3 oz., and typically vend for $1.75 to $2.
Pierre Minis also are offered in several bulk-pack formats for manual foodservice, including sandwich kits (72 buns and burgers that enable operators to create distinctive signature sandwiches by adding toppings and spreads) and "mini proteins," supplied without buns for maximum flexibility with maximum quality and portion control.
"Our goal is to provide delicious and nutritious meal options that also meet the demands for convenience and versatility," said Karen Manning, senior vice-president of marketing and new product development at Pierre Foods. "New Minis appeal to consumers looking for smaller meals at a better value without compromising on taste."
According to the 2009 Mintel Menu Insights report, mini food, value pricing and lighter food options are among America's top restaurant trends, the company observed. Pierre Minis were conceived to respond to this trend, Manning emphasized, adding that, "They have been thoroughly tested to make sure we didn't sacrifice taste when developing recipes that reduced sodium, fat and calories."
Headquartered in Cincinnati, OH, Pierre Foods delivers convenient, high-quality food items through a variety of food distribution outlets including vending machines, restaurants, grocery stores, schools, stadiums, convenience stores and hospitals. In addition to its flagship Cincinnati plant, Pierre maintains manufacturing facilities in Claremont, NC, Amherst, OH, Easley, SC, and Rome, GA.