From the humble cucumber to an inspiring experience
The humble cucumber is the go-to vegetable because of its versatility – after all who doesn’t love a fresh cucumber in their salads and sandwiches? However, the success of the cucumber has made them ubiquitous – often seen as uninspiring and traditional. But what if we could develop a cucumber that captured the imagination of the consumer who loves vegetables?
A little over 2 and a half years ago BASF contacted a group of like-minded people from the horticultural sector and food processing industry and started a Cucumber Think Tank with the aim of developing innovative cucumber products that create added value for consumers.
One hot topic we discovered when we explored the challenge from a customer centric point of view was ease of use and taste. With that in mind we started to develop a new type of cucumber. This new Intense® cucumber answers the needs of a changing landscape where cooking and eating patterns have changed, partly encouraged by COVID-19.
Our consumer and market research showed us that people still look for healthy food options but are now eating more ready prepared and easier to prepare meals and snacks. Think of on-the-go, meal kits and ready-to-eat foods. Cucumbers are an essential ingredient in many of these dishes, adding fresh flavor, crunch and mouth feel. But on the downside, they also have limitations.
Short shelf life is one aspect of these. A short shelf life comes from the release of moisture when a cucumber is prepared. Our Think Tank partners from the food processing industry highlighted this as a challenge. The new Intense® cucumber overcomes this obstacle and when added to the ingredients leads to a longer shelf life, a higher quality salad and an improved consumer experience. It also increases production efficiency at Fresh Cut factories with less waste and faster and more efficient processing. This new Intense® cucumber is the next level in convenience and an opportunity to create new recipes and products, giving consumers more inspiration and variety.
If you’d like to find out more about our collaboration, or maybe even team up with BASF and join the movement for a better tomorrow, contact us today.
Consumer & Customer Manager, Benelux/Germany
+31 6 2482 6384