Dole Food Company Unleashes Wave of New Products and Expansions
- by Lilian Diep
CHARLOTTE, NC - Pre-packaged salad kits and bowls are an easy choice for any time of day, and Dole Food Company is continuing to expand the sector with new innovations and releases. At PMA’s Fresh Summit this year, the company will be showcasing new products, lines, and programs that are set to hit the market in the near future, and I couldn’t wait to get the inside crunch.
“Dole will be busy at this year’s Fresh Summit as we will be using the virtual event to preview new products that are coming to market soon,” Bil Goldfield, Director of Corporate Communications, shares with me. “From an innovation standpoint and as part of our mission to increase America’s nutritional health through a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, Dole’s nutritionists, product developers, and marketers maintain an ‘always-on’ commitment to launch compelling, new fruit and vegetable products. This includes the launch and expansion of two new product lines and four new product extensions, totaling 17 separate SKUs.”
Among the latest additions, Dole will be unveiling three new FreshTakes Ready-To-Eat (RTE) Salad Bowls. Set to be shipped to retailers nationwide on October 20 with an SRP of $3.99, the new products come in on-trend flavors such as Chicken Club BLT Salad Bowl, Backyard BBQ Salad with Chicken Bowl, and Avocado Ranch Salad with Chicken Bowl.
These new eco-friendly bowls were uniquely designed by Dole’s innovation team to give consumers more space for mixing, tossing, and enjoying their salad without spilling thanks to the straightened walls. Dole’s proprietary new packaging will be extended to the other flavors in the lineup, including:
- DOLE® Classic Chicken Caesar FreshTakes™ Salad Bowl
- DOLE® Santa Fé Style FreshTakes™ Salad Bowl
- DOLE® Turkey & Bacon Country Cobb FreshTakes™ Salad Bowl
- DOLE® Café Style Chef FreshTakes™ Salad Bowl
- DOLE® Savory Spinach Dijon FreshTakes™ Salad Bowl
- DOLE® Cranberry & Candied Walnut FreshTakes™ Salad Bowl
Following up the RTE bowl launch is a new line of salad kits: DOLE® Just Add Chicken Salad Kits.
“We are introducing a new line of salad kits this fall that provides salad lovers everything they need to turn fresh chicken into a healthy and delicious meal for two,” Bil continues. “Four initial flavor varieties combine Dole lettuces, toppings, an original Dole dressing, and chicken sauté and finishing sauces to create a restaurant-caliber culinary experience every time.”
Debuting in the fresh, new line are:
- DOLE® Pesto Caesar Just Add Chicken Salad Kit
- DOLE® Sweet Orange Just Add Chicken Salad Kit
- DOLE® Roasted Red Pepper Just Add Chicken Salad Kit
- DOLE® Lemon Herb Pepper Just Add Chicken Salad Kit
Dole’s Premium, Chopped!, and Slawesome! salad kit lines are also feeling the expansion love this year as the salad giant is adding new flavors to each line. The Premium Kit line will be welcoming DOLE® Sweet Kale Salad Kit and DOLE® Blueberry Bliss Salad Kit to the category while Chopped! will be adding DOLE® Chopped! Avocado Ranch Salad Kit and Slawesome! will be including DOLE® Hawaiian Slawesome!® Kit to the family.
In addition to these 17 new products, Dole will be giving retailers a preview of DOLE® Jumbo Blueberries and DOLE® Petit Romaine as well as showcasing DOLE® Organic Bananas and DOLE® Plantains as both fruits become bigger parts of the banana giant’s business.
“In 2019, bananas led all organic categories in growth and accounted for almost half the increase in organic purchases across the entire produce department, delivering more than double the organic volume as the number two category,” Bil explains. “At Fresh Summit, we’ll also be discussing increasing consumer interest in plantains, which has resulted in expanding Dole’s marketing, promotional, and culinary efforts in support of this still relatively unknown fruit.”
As one of the world’s largest providers of fresh fruits, vegetables, packaged salads, and berries, Dole speaks regularly with its customers and relies on PMA for building and maintaining relationships, Bil shares. At Fresh Summit this year, Dole will be taking the opportunity to spotlight “The Dole Way,” a new framework and language for telling Dole’s sustainability story.
“‘The Dole Way’ includes our 2020 Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability Report as well as our first-ever enterprise-wide sustainability goals,” says Bil. “Event attendees will hear how Dole is continuing its commitment to sustainability and social responsibility, both as one of the world’s largest fresh produce providers, and more specifically in its conventional and organic banana programs.”
For those interested in learning more about Dole’s sustainability efforts, click here.
While many are feeling reminiscent of trade shows past, powerhouses like Dole are filling in the void with excitement at the fresh produce possibilities in the near future.