CINCINNATI, OH — On Wednesday, The Kroger Co. announced the expansion of its exclusive Simple Truth Plant Based collection, unveiling more than 50 new plant-based foods at affordable prices, including non-dairy cheeses, oat milk ice cream and Emerge fresh chicken-less patties and grinds.
Kroger's Simple Truth Plant Based collection launched with more than 20 products last September, featuring vegan chocolate chip cookie dough, oat milk, sour cream, deli slices, sausage, and other products. Since then, the line has continued to grow to meet customer demand, offering a diverse selection of vegan- and flexitarian-friendly snacks, spreads, dips, desserts, burger patties and grinds, and more. By the end of 2020, the collection will feature more than 75 products.
A growing number of consumers are embracing flexitarian living, prioritizing healthier food choices and reducing their intake of meat and dairy products, as Kroger reported in its 2020 food trends outlook.
"We're excited to introduce the latest additions to our Simple Truth Plant Based collection to provide an expanded selection of affordable, delicious and quality products for our customers who live a vegan, vegetarian or flexitarian lifestyle," said Stuart Aitken, Kroger's chief merchant. "We look forward to continuing to drive the growth of the plant-based category through our Simple Truth brand, which exceeded $2.5 billion in sales last year, and we anticipate increased interest in our plant-based selection in 2021 and beyond."
The Simple Truth Plant Based collection now includes more dairy-free options like cheese shreds and slices, oat milk ice cream, almond milk yogurt and creamy salad dressings as well as trend-inspired recipes like ready-to-eat brownie batter and cauliflower dips.
Kroger's team of chefs, food scientists and nutritionists collaborated to develop the collection's recipes that offer 100% plant-based alternatives. The integrated team tested numerous recipes for its non-dairy cheeses, oat milk ice cream and almond milk yogurt – perfecting the taste and textures to mirror their dairy counterparts, while ensuring the products remained free of GMOs and 101+ artificial preservatives and ingredients.
Featured products from the expanded Simple Truth Plant Based Collection include:
- Cheese Shreds (Cheddar and Mozzarella)
- Cheese Slices (Cheddar and Hot Pepper)
- Oat Milk Ice Cream (Strawberry Graham, Sea Salt Caramel, Peanut Butter Chip, Black Raspberry Chip, and Maple Pecan)
- Almond Milk Yogurts (Vanilla, Strawberry, Blueberry, and Mango)
- Cauliflower Dips (Buffalo, Spicy Queso, Tzatziki, and Cilantro with Jalapeño)
- Caesar and Ranch Salad Dressings
- Ready-to-Eat Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Ready-to-Eat Chocolate Truffle Brownie Batter
Available exclusively at Kroger's family of stores, the expanded Simple Truth Plant Based collection also features the launch of Simple Truth Emerge™ Chick'n, a plant-based alternative to fresh chicken patties and grinds created in response to increased demand for the Simple Truth Emerge burger patties and grinds that the retailer introduced earlier this year.
Simple Truth Emerge Chick'n patties and grinds offer the same taste, texture and sizzle on the grill or in a pan as chicken and are free of GMOs, dairy, and soy. Simple Truth Emerge Chick'n patties and grinds provide up to 21 grams of wheat-based protein per serving and are located in the packaged traditional meat case.
"As our customers' eating styles and health and wellness goals continue to evolve, Simple Truth will continue to deliver an unmatched combination of quality and value for natural, organic and plant-based foods," said Brad Studer, Kroger's senior director of Our Brands. "We believe that everyone deserves to have access to fresh, affordable and delicious food, no matter who you are, how you shop or what you like to eat, and we will continue to innovate and inspire our selection of products to deliver on that very promise for our customers."
According to the inaugural Good Food Retail Report recently released by nonprofit The Good Food Institute (GFI), Kroger is leading the way in elevating the booming plant-based trend. The report also recognized Kroger-owned King Soopers for achieving the "best plant-based store-brand assortment."
"We're thrilled to see Kroger double down on plant-based foods with the expansion of its Simple Truth Plant-Based collection," said Caroline Bushnell, GFI's director of corporate engagement. "Kroger is really driving own-brand innovation forward with products like their new Simple Truth Emerge Chick'n. As the nation's largest grocer, Kroger's commitment to plant-based meat and dairy is a clear signal that plant-based is a mainstream way of eating that is here to stay."