It’s time to ditch the utensils and extra steps. The delicious butter you know and love now comes in a new, easy-to-use, ½-tablespoon ball. Land O Lakes® Butter Balls launched to market this month and are available now in select grocery stores across the Midwest.
The COVID pandemic forced consumers to dust off their pots and pans and start cooking more at home. And even though restaurants have reopened, almost 75% of U.S. consumers want to continue preparing meals at home after COVID, according to findings from the 2021 Eating Patterns in America Annual Report conducted by the NPD Group. The report also shows younger generations, specifically Millennials and Gen Z, are more likely to use butter as a cooking aid.
“This got us thinking about ways we could re-invent butter, as people’s lives get busier and busier,” says Jodie Pett, Marketing Research Manager for the Butter Innovation Team. “We know everything tastes better with butter. And like cooking sprays, this product makes cooking at home easier and more convenient.”
During the team’s research period, they gave Butter Balls to consumer test groups and observed how they used them at home.
“Consumers loved that the balls were pre-measured and came in a resealable bag that preserved freshness,” says Sophie Cavanagh, Marketing Manager, Retail Butter and Spreads Innovation. “They don’t have to unwrap the butter, pull out any utensils, or go through any of those extra steps that can be a little more time-consuming.”
Alyssa Klobucar, Associate Marketing Manager, Butter and Spreads Innovation, adds that consumers love the versatility of Butter Balls.
“You can just pop them into the sauté pan for cooking your protein or vegetables,” Alyssa says. “They are also perfect for topping pasta, baked potatoes and breakfast items like pancakes.”
“60% of the consumers we tested who tried Butter Balls say it’s something they would buy in addition to butter sticks or tubs, not just as a replacement,” Sophie says. “This is the first of many innovative Land O Lakes® butter products in the pipeline. We have several exciting ideas in the works knowing that consumer behavior has shifted fundamentally during the pandemic.”
Consumers have already began to notice this missing ball-shaped hole in their lives, including this viral Tik Tok. The product is now available in several nationwide locations across the Midwest including Kroger, Meijer, Hy-Vee, Lunds & Byerlys, Kowalskis, Super Target and more.