The evolution of cold meats | Supermarket perimeter

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Artificial and intensely creative, charcuterie can at first glance seem a little intimidating; but once the basic algorithm is understood, there is no longer any limit to its applications.

“Charcuterie is a charcuterie version of the cheese plate – easy and awesome,” said Evan Inada, director of cold cuts / partnerships, Columbus Craft Meats, Hormel Foodservice, Austin, Minn. “When you look at the French origin, cooked and dried – the aged salame is the star.

Volpi Foods, St. Louis, offered a brief introduction to the origins of charcuterie, which is derived from the French word for canned meals. Salume is similar to cold cuts, an Italian term referring to a broad category of Italian artisan canned meats. Salumis are artisanal pork-based meats. Salami is a deli product made from ground pork that is minced, wrapped in an envelope, and dried over time.

Authentic, experiential and practical

The charcuterie experience begins with the salame. It is then built with accompaniments of cheese, olives and crackers, reinforced by a good dose of creativity which is limited only to the imagination of the manufacturer. The variations on the deli platter continue to grow with breakfast and brunch options that feature ham and salmon and sides of any bagels. Stunning items even higher with inclusions of pâté, terrines and mousse, nuts, pickled items and / or chocolate served with cocktails of red / white wines, beer or whiskey.

The pâté from Gilbert & Bernard Pâté and Specialty Foods, Brooklyn Cured, New York, was named a finalist for a National Deli Award. His Wild Mushroom Pâté, the signature recipe of the brand’s new range of pâtés, was created by Scott Bridi, butcher, and Hannah Bae, his wife. Inspired by food and travel, Brooklyn Cured offers pre-sliced ​​and bulk deli, salami, sausage, hot dogs, cold cuts and pate.

Deli exploration and education often begins in specialty stores before moving on to retail. It starts with consumers experimenting with Italian varieties before sampling offerings from France and Spain and exploring local and regional suppliers in their area, said Eric Richard, Industry Relations Coordinator, IDDBA, Madison , Wis.

Regardless of their preference for salami or salumi, curious consumers are hungry for new flavors and convenient sizes for snacks and ingredient-style items. Volpi’s pre-minced pancetta is a must-have item for home cooks looking to enhance family meals on weekdays. Its recent launch of Pepperoni & Chorizo ​​Crumbles introduces a trendy flavor like Spanish-style chorizo ​​paired with fan favorite pepperoni.

“The convenience of the product’s format plays a big role in impulsiveness,” said Deanna Depke, Director of Marketing, Volpi Foods. “Buyers are always on the lookout for things to spruce up their existing recipes. “

Volpi is interested in Jamon Serrano, the Spanish cousin of Prosciutto, as well as Bresaola, a version of beef that has a similar tender texture, pushed by early users in the South East and West Coast regions who are growing. the demand for new flavors.

Respect for tradition

Guided by 100 years of Italian art, Columbus Craft Meats is working on a campaign to demonstrate the perfect charcuterie bite, complete with accessories. The company’s portfolio includes take-out platters and pre-sliced ​​meats that use San Francisco’s signature fog to aid in the aging process of its dry Italian salami.

Made from 100% premium whole cuts of pork and California red wine, consumers can choose from a sampler and tasting board with six different salami in different shapes, sizes and thicknesses. These include hot sopressata, sopressata, prosciutto, a sample of charcuterie and a trio of cold cuts of Italian dry salam, pepper salam and Calabrian salam. Its packaging also includes educational tips such as how to buy the right cheese, beer, and wine for pairings.

Veroni USA, Logan, NJ, was born as a small provincial salami store in 1925 in the heart of Emilia Romagna in northeastern Italy by five brothers. The company is guided by a mission of good cuisine, respect for tradition, passion for quality and attention to new food and nutritional trends.

In 2016, Veroni was the first Italian company to import 100% made in Italy salami to the United States. Now in its fourth generation, the Veroni range includes Salame Milano, Salame di Parma, Salame Calabrese and Truffle Salame. Its Enjoy AperiTime platters feature compartments for sharing, while a range of 2-ounce protein snacks feature combinations of mild or spicy Italian salam with provolone cheese, dried apricots or cranberries and breadsticks, perfect for the break or the “merenda”.

Olli Salumeria, Oceanside, Calif, produces artisanal, slow cooking fine meats based on ancient family recipes handed down for four generations. When it comes to trends, Gil Perales, Marketing Director, Olli Salumeria, sees a growing popularity of hard or smoked salami and an ongoing interest in protein driven by food trends, home cooking and healthier on-the-go options.

Applying simple ingredients and time, the company offers their clean and tasty bulk (5lb) salami, antipasto platters and conveniently sized snacks. The Genoa Salami and Fontina, Sopressata and Cheddar, Calabrese Salami and Asiago or Prosciutto and Mozzarella snack packs come with artisan crackers packed in a 13g protein package.

“The premium flavor profiles now focus on alcohol, ‘exotic’ combinations and warming ingredients,” said Perales. “We’re also seeing the trend for the rich flavors associated with savory and the bitter / acidic profiles found in pickled products instead of the richness you see with meat and nuts. “

Cool and convenient draw

One of the keys to the adoption of charcuterie will be to introduce the next generation of charcuterie enthusiasts to products through smaller pack sizes that are wallet-conscious but still deliver superior quality and taste, a. predicts Depke. With so many variables possible, it’s important that deli stores offer a variety of sizes designed with a mindset that purchases can be made for a day or a week.

With the abrupt end of sampling due to the pandemic, Volpi has found innovative ways to connect with new buyers without physically sampling the product with creative alternatives through omnichannel strategies to drive adoption. Depke explained that some retailers are reinstating their sampling programs while others are capitalizing on a “hidden treasure” mindset.

“The fresh produce departments are a huge draw,” said Richard. “The store should showcase these shelves, especially since it can be difficult to promote fresh produce online to make the department a real destination. Supermarkets are the perfect place for education, and deli meats could become a key part of in-store education.

Richard also points out that retailers can’t communicate too much about protein, as it continues to be a big selling point. He suggests that retailers call this attribute on labels and signage because people are looking for it.

According to Rebecca Casey, current trends in social snacks and home entertainment have also triggered an increase in demand for pre-cut and pre-sliced ​​cold cuts and cheese snacks that are ready to snack or serve as soon as they are available. are bought at the grocery store, according to Rebecca Casey, senior vice-president, strategy and marketing, TC Emballages Transcontinental, Chicago.

As a result of these trends, TC Transcontinental Packaging favors sustainable solutions designed for the benefit of consumers and the environment. Since freshness is a major consideration, the packaging must have sufficient barriers to protect the product from oxygen and moisture, making the integrity of the seal another important factor.

Packaging with an airtight seal can help ensure the product is stored and protected to minimize food waste. Lid or peel / reseal closures allow easy opening and reclosing for future use. Easy open features such as zippers, front pocket zippers and peel / reseal also provide easy and frustration-free access while maintaining product integrity.

“In deli meats, the packaging can be manipulated to be functional,” Casey explained. “Using a semi-rigid tray that can then be used as a serving tray is aimed at the consumer who seeks convenience and wants to use a charcuterie tray as a social snack. “

Charcuterie + charcuterie

With demand for deli meats on the rise, in-store delicatessen is well placed to build on its already stable base of transparency and trust. Perceived as a cheaper alternative to restaurants, in-store deli meats offer consumers a mix of high-end, high-end pricing and attributes with foods designed to be easily assembled at home. Marked with endless variety, the deli is a vehicle that can provide opportunities for retailers to capitalize on a growing number of trends that are driving consumers to buy.

“The deli is in an exciting place,” said Inada. “When you consider its growth over the past five years, you see how education has helped the deli grow so quickly. Users and retailers can help continue this trend by applying quality and transparency around the products and the people who produce the products, and by providing consumers with tools to let their creativity flourish.

Certified salt cellar

Those ready to become a subject matter expert in the sale and management of charcuterie production can check out the IDDBA’s Professional Charcuterie Certification: Salumiere, (Certified Salumiere).

In the course, students learn about the origins of cold cuts, how to build a cold cuts board with the right balance of meats and cheeses, textures and flavors, and how to use cold cuts as a growth engine for the entire market. The next proctored exam will be held in conjunction with the IDDBA fair in June. Registration opens mid-January 2022.


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