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Food & drinks : just remix to innovate

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You may remember this old post we published on innovation : innovation is a remix (you can read the post here or just watch the video below).


Well, it seems that in the food & drink business (we are just back from SIAL) some innovations are just about that : applying old recipes to a new sector.

If you are European chances are high that you consume pistachios in one of those two ways : roasted (in the shell) or nature. For Setton farmers, a California-based company, this was all too boring

Pistachios are boring … not for everyone

Setton is a pistachio producer which tries to diversify in some more innovative products (by the way, if you don’t know how a pistachio tree –yes, it’s a tree- looks like and how you beloved pistachios are produced, watch the video below).

This year at SIAL they came with several products that are new for Europe. All are based on pistachios (obviously) but bring something different and correspond to different consumption methods.

Pistachio snacks

You know the Americans love snacking, which goes along with the nomadism trend we have already discussed on this blog. Setton won an award for an healthy snack that is a mix of pistachios and cranberries. It’s energetic, all-natural and tastes amazing.

Chips recipes applied to pistachio

The other type of consumption is at home, before dinner, with friends. It’s a that moment that you are the most likely to eat pistachios in their shells. Don’t get us wrong. Salty pistachios are addictive. When you start eating them, you won’t stop easily, right ? But it’s always the same.

A decade or two ago it was the same for Chips and now you’ve a lot of different flavors.

Setton figured out they could do the same and bring different flavors in combination with a healthy product (healthier than chips). The result is once again pretty amazing : from the basic “salt and pepper” pistachios to more extravagant “Chipotle BBQ pistachios” (that won’t ring a bell for most Europeans), there are five variants in the product range. It remains a very natural, no-chemical, recipe and it’s actually surprising that no one has tried to sell them on the European market. We’re pretty sure it would be an instant hit.


Sometimes you don’t need to go for a breakthrough innovation to be different. Differentiation is sometimes about incremental innovation and you may well find inspiration within your field.

When our customers ask us about innovation strategies, we often look into other sectors of activities to find our inspiration. Setton proves with its products that it’s not always necessary. The most obvious innovative moves are however the most difficult to find.

We find the innovations of Setton beautiful because they are simple and make sense. They make sense in terms of market trends and they make sense for the consumer. Good job !

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Author: Pierre-Nicolas Schwab

Dr. Pierre-Nicolas Schwab is the founder of IntoTheMinds. He specializes in e-commerce, retail and logistics. He is also a research fellow in the marketing department of the Free University of Brussels and acts as a coach for several startups and public organizations. He holds a PhD in Marketing, a MBA in Finance, and a MSc in Chemistry. He can be contacted by email, Linkedin or by phone (+32 486 42 79 42)

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