How To Engage Brokers to Drive Innovation

As you may know, Frostline® Frozen Treats is manufactured and marketed by Kent Precision Foods Group. We want to share an exciting company-wide initiative that furthers our commitment to serving the needs of not only our customers, but our customers’ customers.

At Kent Precision Foods Group, we regularly gather insights from leading foodservice research groups and organizations to stay ahead of flavor, consumer and industry trends. A focus on what’s coming next has helped us evolve our business with more innovative products and processes that benefit everyone who interacts with our company and brands.

That’s why we have formed the KPFG Insights Foodservice Broker Advisory Board. The board includes a regional cross section of industry leaders with extensive experience, drawn from the country’s top brokers, including:

  • Al McGarity – Gilbert Foods
  • Phil Schmidt – Floyd B. Case Inc.
  • Elizabeth Klingman – Acosta
  • Ed Brink – Herspring-Gibbs
  • Kyle Moen – Synergy Enterprises
  • Dori Bilbrey – Menu Marketing

By more directly engaging with the broker community, we hope to gather industry insights, learn more about competition, discover cross-merchandising opportunities, test promotion ideas, identify product gaps, ideate on new products, and collect operator feedback, including overall business insights and trend impact. KPFG will use this information to serve as a source of market intelligence for the entire foodservice industry and to create future product and marketing plans for our brands.

The KPFG Insighters Foodservice Broker Advisory Board meets every six weeks via conference calls and at least twice a year face to face. Input from the first meeting, held in November, is already being incorporated into the KPFG Foodservice plan for 2016.

For more information about the Broker Advisory Board or about KPFG, please visit precisionfoods.com.

Chocolate: From Inaccessible to Everywhere

When most of us hear the word “chocolate,” we think of candy, cookies, and other mouthwatering sweets. Of course, everyone loves a decadent dessert. But did you know that for 90% of chocolate’s existence, it was neither sweet nor easily accessible? As a modern treat defying that past, Frostline® Chocolate Soft Serve Mix brings you the history of its famed flavor.

The ancient Mesoamericans discovered chocolate, probably around 1900 B.C. If you thought your cup of cocoa was a modern phenomenon, groups like the Olmec, Maya and Aztec had you beat 4,000 years ago. They drank chocolate as a bitter, frothy beverage. It might not sound as good as your classic hot chocolate, but its ingredients, which included chili peppers and other spices, were certainly “original.”

Even in its unsweetened state, ancient chocolate was so popular that its availability was limited to society’s most elite. This begs the question: if the Mesoamericans weren’t in it for the sugar, what was the appeal? Watch out romantics, because history tells us they found chocolate to be a mood enhancer and aphrodisiac. They may have been on to something 3,500 years before Valentine’s Day was even invented.

Due to its…interesting effects, people used to think chocolate had spiritual and mystical powers. They reserved it for rulers, warriors, priests and nobles at sacred ceremonies. In fact, the Spanish explorers who brought chocolate back to Europe only had the privilege of trying the stuff because the Aztec king mistook their leader for an incarnated deity.

Europeans sweetened chocolate with cane sugar and cinnamon in the 1500s, but one thing remained unchanged: it was still only available to the rich and royal. Thank goodness for the invention of the steam engine in the 1700s, which made mass production possible.

Today, the word “chocolate” has expanded to include a range of sweet and accessible treats, like Frostline Chocolate Soft Serve Mix. Unlike ancient chocolate, it’s refreshingly delicious, surprisingly affordable, and even available to customers with dietary restrictions. Frostline Vanilla Soft Serve Mix is also available for customers who prefer the classic cone.