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Canada: Lifeway launches kefir in latest international moveFriday, August 01, 2014 > 08:58:05
“They are trying to bring an experiential element to the value-conscious consumer — the one who doesn’t go to Starbucks because it is too expensive,” he said.
“You are seeing that kind of innovation from chains who are up the price ladder from [Tims and McDonald’s].” But there is an “aspirational element” to going to slightly higher-end rivals such as Chipotle and Panera bread for some consumers, he said, and if Tim Hortons stays on top of trends it could pull any straying customers back in its doors.
It comes amid a tepid market: traffic was flat at Canadian restaurants in 2013, with gainers in the market stealing share from other rivals, according to market research firm NPD Group, a trend that is expected to continue through 2014.
Despite the wine and beer gift glasses on display at the convention, Mr. Caira said Tim Hortons has no plans to license its locations. “This is all conceptual …we are looking at all sorts of things, but we are not specifically looking at selling spirits.”
Tim Hortons plans to open another 500 outlets over the next five years in Canada, as well as 300 in the U.S. and 220 in the Middle EastUS cultured dairy group Lifeway Foods has launched its probiotic kefir into Canada, which becomes the company's second international market.
The smoothie-like dairy drink will be available at mass market, health food and drug stores throughout Canada, Lifeway said yesterday (29 July). Four lines, including three flavoured varieties, will be on sale in 946ml bottles.
The launch into Canada follows the introduction of Lifeway's kefir into the UK last year.
Lifeway CEO Julie Smolyansky said: "The probiotics market has been experiencing steady global growth, with the largest increase coming from the probiotics foods and beverages segment. We ... are now in a position to build our presence in the global marketplace. Entering the UK and now Canada are the first steps in a plan to duplicate our success in the US in other markets around the world."