Prepared Foods showcases sauces, dressings and dips making a debut in November 2020.

Plant Power
Continuing its journey toward its vision of “Plants Powering People,” Bolthouse Farms, Bakersfield, Calif., introduced plant-based Bolthouse Farms refrigerated dressings, in addition to new Proten Keto beverages.
New plant-based refrigerated dressings join Bolthouse Farms’ established line of refrigerated yogurt-based conventional dressings. The new plant-based offerings include two oat-based and two veggie-blend varieties, which rely on a combination of vegetables, herbs, spices, seeds and whole oat flour. 
Varieties include Garden Ranch, Habanero Blue, Carrot Miso and Green Goddess. Officials say they’re made with natural, simple ingredients and are all vegan/dairy free, gluten free, non-GMO and contain no artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, sweeteners or gums. Bolthouse Farms Plant-Based Refrigerated Dressings are sold in 10oz bottles in the refrigerated dressing case in the produce aisle.

Dressings & Dips
Inspired by Whole30 co-founder and CEO Melissa Urban’s own kitchen creations, Thirty & Co. Inc., Salt Lake City, introduced a line of salad dressings and dipping sauces. Varieties include House Ranch, Buffalo Vinaigrette, Creamy Balsamic, Elderberry Vinaigrette and Secret Sauce. They are available exclusively online through Thrive Market. 
“Dressings and sauces add flavor and variety to your Whole30. But not everyone has 20 minutes to make a homemade Ranch, and finding store-bought without added sugar, soy, or dairy can be challenging,” says Urban. “We love making the Whole30 easier and more convenient, and our community says, ‘When I see the Whole30 logo, I know I can trust the ingredients.’ Creating our own line of dressings featuring my favorite kitchen flavors, is an obvious and exciting next step.”
Urban says the new Whole30 dressings and dips are made with no added sugar, gluten, soy, dairy, gums, fillers, or natural flavors. They also use Certified Humane eggs in accordance with established animal welfare and Thrive Market standards.

Versatile, Veg-Forward
This summer saw Conagra Brands Inc., Chicago, introduce Healthy Choice Power Salad Dressings that are both vegetable forward and versatile enough for use as dressings, dips and marinades. Varieties include Creamy Ranch, Creamy Italian, Garden French and Greener Goddess.
Conagra says the dressings contain cauliflower, spinach, red bell pepper and tomatillos, as well as a savory blend of herbs and spices. They contain 45 calories or less per serving, no artificial flavors and address consumer interests in vegan, non-dairy and no-soy options.
“Healthy Choice Power Dressings will take your salads to a whole new level,” said Lubo Zhotev, Conagra’s senior brand manager of Healthy Choice. “The dressings bring bold flavors with better-for-you benefits and can be used in so many different ways. We can’t wait to see how our fans use the dressings to get creative during mealtime.”
Healthy Choice Power Dressing can be found in 12oz bottles in the shelf-stable salad dressing section of grocery stores and mass retailers, and at select online retailers. They are arriving on store shelves with a suggested retail price of $3.99.

Dressing with CBG 
Tezerra, LLC, Raleigh, N.C., says its new Excite My Bite Balsamic Vinaigrette is the first US dressing to use CBG (cannabigerol), a cannabinoid found in hemp. Officials say the company discovered that the antioxidant properties of  CBG are effective at helping to protect the dressing’s flavor.
According to the website, Excite My Bite Balsamic Vinaigrette is rich and bold with a “bite.” It includes real balsamic vinegar made from an artisanal blend of grapes from Modena, Italy. The shelf stable product is available online and ships nationwide at a suggested retail price of $8.00
“Tezerra is committed to researching and promoting the benefits cannabinoids can provide for consumer products,” says Cynthia Bryant, Tezerra chief commercial officer. “The ingredients hold tremendous potential to preserve product attributes.”

Dips, Sauce 
Organic processor Tessemae’s All Natural LLC, Essex, Md., stayed busy through the summer with the launch of a new Cosmic Jerry Sauce in August, followed by new 8oz Ranch Dips in H-E-B grocery stores in Texas. 
Tessemae’s announced its partnership with the Jerry Garcia Family in a “saucy tribute to the rock legend.” Officials describe Cosmic Jerry Sauce as an “everything” spicy-sweet sauce that can serve as a dip, dressing, marinade or glaze for fish, chicken, beef, vegetables and more. It features a blend of honey, mustard and buffalo sauce “with a hint of rich umami,” says Tessemae’s. The product made with organic ingredients and is certified dairy free and gluten free.
Meanwhile, officials say Tessemae’s new 8oz cups are the first “non-dairy clean label ranch dips to hit shelves in Texas.”
Dips come in three flavors: Habanero Ranch, Avocado Ranch and Everything Bagel Ranch. Each is certified USDA organic, non-GMO, vegetarian friendly, dairy free, gluten free, sugar free and made with cage free eggs. In addition, they are Whole30, Keto and Paleo approved.

Hit the Sauce
This fall found restaurant chains using sauces to tempt patrons to leave home and try new tastes.
Mid-October had KFC Corp., Louisville, announce the national debut of KFC Sauce, which it says is “tangy and sweet, with a bit of smokiness specifically designed to pair with KFC’s Extra Crispy Tenders.”
“When we set out to create a new signature dipping sauce, we went right to the experts—our customers—to find out what made a sauce best-in-class for dipping,” said Andrea Zahumensky, chief marketing officer, KFC U.S. “We went through 50 iterations, and their response to this recipe was overwhelming!”
Beginning October 12 in all KFC U.S. restaurants, fried chicken dipping fans can enjoy the new signature KFC Sauce along with a newly revamped core sauce lineup of Classic Ranch, Honey BBQ and Honey Mustard, in addition to KFC Hot Sauce.
Just a week earlier, Del Taco Restaurants, Inc., Lake Forest, Calif., announced a branded hot sauce promotion with The Cholula Food Company, Jersey City, N.J. New offerings included a $1 Crispy Chicken Cholula Taco and the $5 Epic Cholula Crispy Chicken Burrito.
“We’ve received an incredible response and strong customer demand for our Crispy Chicken since introducing it to our permanent menu this summer. We want to build on that momentum by giving our fans even more crave-worthy flavor options, and what better way to do so than with an iconic hot sauce brand collaboration,” said Tim Hackbardt, Del Taco’s chief marketing officer. “Cholula and tacos are made for each other, but it is amazing poured on just about everything else and that’s why we have it in a burrito, on loaded fries, and in our breakfast rollers with eggs and cheese.”
Each of the Del Taco menu items incorporates Cholula to complement the flavor profiles, ranging from Crispy Chicken to loaded crinkle cut fries to the egg and cheese roller. Del Taco is offering multiple options to treat Cholula fans during different eating occasions.
“We are excited to add Cholula’s unique spices and flavor to Del Taco’s successful Crispy Chicken lineup!” said Miguel Leal, Cholula Food Company’s Chief Marketing Officer. 
The new Del Taco Cholula menu includes the Cholula Crispy Chicken Taco, the Epic Cholula Crispy Chicken Burrito, Cholula Loaded Fries, Cholula Egg & Cheese Breakfast Roller, Cholula Chorizo Breakfast Roller and a Cholula Bacon Breakfast Roller.

And the Winner Is…
They say the “show must go on.” And that even applies in a year when virtually all trade shows and exhibitions were cancelled due to the nation’s coronavirus pandemic. This year brought cancelations of both the Natural Products Expo West (New Hope) and the Summer Fancy Food Show (Specialty Food Association). Even so, that didn’t stop show organizers from honoring distinctive new products that would have been on display. Likewise, the Association of Dressings and Sauces (ADS) held a virtual version of its annual technical meeting and gave annual awards for dressing, sauce and package of the year.
Among a host of 2020 NEXTY awards presented by New Hope was a “Best New Condiment” award for Burma Love Foods, San Francisco, and its Burma Love Vegan Fermented Tea Leaf Dressing (pictured). That Burma Love dressing also earned a 2020 sofi award as “Best New Product” in the Condiments, Dressings & Marinades” category for the Fancy Food Show.
Specialty Food Association officials said SFA partnered with the Rutgers University Food Innovation Center to host the annual 48th annual sofi™ Awards competition. It resulted resulting in 157 winners across 49 categories from around the world. Products competing for Gold, Silver, and Bronze Awards were judged 70% on taste and 30% on ingredient quality. Products competing for the New Product Awards were judged 60% on taste, 20% on ingredient quality, and 20% on innovation. 
SFA presented as many as 16 awards to manufacturers in four categories: barbecue and hot sauce; condiments, dresssings and marinades; salsa and dips; and sauces.
Closing the awards season was ADS, Atlanta, which held its annual fall Technical Meeting as a virtual event. The early October meeting included a Sauce of the Year Award for Golden State Foods and its Zaxby’s Caribbean Jerk Sauce; a Dressing of the Year Award for Clorox Company and its Hidden Valley Honey Mustard flavor packet; and Package of the Year honors to Clorox Company for its Hidden Valley Original Ranch Christmas Stocking. 
ADS also presented two technical awards. Charlie Wind, Brooks’ Bottling Co., earned a 2020 Technical Service Award. ADS presented its 2020 Technical Achievement Award to Dr. Fred Freidt of the USDA at North Carolina State University.