Industry News | October 15, 2012 | QSR Exclusive Brief

Healthy for the Holidays? TCBY Thinks It Can Be Done

TCBY's Pumpkin Spice Super Fro-Yo is available this month.
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The holidays are usually a time to splurge on less-than-healthy treats, but one frozen-yogurt chain is instead offering customers healthy seasonal favorites that are full of added fiber, vitamins, and good-for-you bacteria.

National chain TCBY announced that it is rolling out three new “Super Fro-Yo” flavors in the coming months: Pumpkin Spice, Apple Spice, and Eggnog.

Super Fro-Yo, which TCBY introduced in 2010, contains a minimum of 3 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein, 20 percent daily value of vitamin D, 20 percent daily value of calcium, 10 percent daily value of vitamin A, and seven live active probiotic cultures.

“The motivating force for Super Fro-Yo is looking at the health transit we see in the United States,” says Dr. Wayne Geilman, TCBY’s head of product development. “We know that people are really looking at the ingredient statements more, and they are looking for better nutrition than they currently have. So as we looked at it, the trends that really looked to be important were, No. 1, increasing fiber, and [then] reducing fat.”

Pumpkin Spice Super Fro-Yo is available this month, while Apple Spice will be available in November (and possibly through early 2013) and Eggnog will be available in December.

Geilman says Super Fro-Yo is superior to most refrigerated yogurts, since it contains a prebiotic fiber that compliments the standard probiotic bacteria, resulting in better digestion.

Super Fro-Yo won the 2011 Prepared Foods Excellence in Innovation award and has enjoyed a great consumer response, he says.

“What we’ve seen is our store counts were in decline for a while, and now we’ve turned that around, and we’re almost opening a store a week now. So that’s the indication of how this has affected our stores,” Geilmansays.

He adds that the taste and health benefits of TCBY’s Super Fro-Yo has set the brand apart from the fro-yo field.

“In increasing the fiber, we also were able to retain that rich, creamy texture that you normally associate with high-quality ice cream,” he says. “People still feel like they can give themselves a treat, but we’ve got this nutrition built into the format. … We have a nutritional advantage, and we also have a body and texture and flavor advantage.”

A majority of TCBY’s 60-plus flavors are now Super Fro-Yo, including the recently added Greek flavor.

By Laurel Nakkas