Battle-ready: Latest Hull oats bar is gearing up for launch
BUILDING BRAND: Kevin Smith, left, and Shaun Gibbins with their bars.
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 10 May 2017
A RAPIDLY growing Hull nutrition brand is next week launching a new protein cookie product to complement its “free from” range of high-protein oat bars.
Battle Oats in Strickland Street was founded by Hessle entrepreneurs Kevin Smith and Shaun Gibbins in 2014.
A spin-off to their existing company, Icon Nutrition, the business now has distribution in Ireland, the Netherlands and Kuwait, and exports to more than ten countries.
On Wednesday, Battle Oats is unveiling what it believes to be the only protein cookie on the market which uses plant-based protein and is both vegan and gluten-free.
Kevin Smith said: “We believe that our product could be the world’s healthiest cookie.
“Generally, people love cookies and when they see that ours are non-GMO and high in protein and fibre, then their ‘treat’ actually becomes part of a healthy lifestyle.
“We have built our brand with the aim of providing healthy, high-protein snacks, designed for active people on-the-go, but which are also satisfying and taste good.
“All of our products are wholesome and are oven baked by a small British bakery, to strict gluten free guidelines.”
Over the past two years, Battle Oats has grown sales by more than 100 per cent per annum, shipping more than one million bars last year.
The firm employs nine people directly, as well as supporting other jobs through outsourcing.
Initially launching with two flavours – chocolate chip and double chocolate – each cookie contains 10g of protein and 8g of fibre.
As of next week, the cookies will be available online and through selected wholesalers and distributors.
Earlier this year, the company secured a deal with Holland and Barrett to supply its protein bar products to 300 of the retailer’s UK stores.
The listing with Holland and Barrett is expected to be extended to Battle Oats’ protein cookies later in the year.
The company is now planning to add three additional flavours to its protein cookie range over the next six months.
Co-founder Shaun Gibbins adds: “It’s estimated that there are now half a million vegans in the UK and over a million vegetarians.
“There is a growing demand for a wider range of suitable products as people choose plant-based proteins, which are not only healthier, but are also more sustainable than milk- based protein.”
Battle Oats cookies use pea protein – a selling point Mr Gibbins says is again unique to the Hull brand.
“Our cookies use pea protein, which is more environmentally-friendly to produce and also gives a softer texture to the cookie, which our research has shown consumers prefer to the whey protein-based products currently on the market.”
Mr Smith said: “The current ‘clean eating’ trend has seen this type of nutritious snacking becoming more mainstream with many consumers now looking for a grab ’n’ go healthy protein snack.
“Our cookies can be seen as a healthy indulgence and we expect their appeal will reach far beyond exercise enthusiasts needing to repair muscles and quickly replenish energy.
“Consequently, we’re keen to talk to new retailer partners throughout the UK, whether supermarket chains, convenience stores or garage forecourts, who want to extend their range of gluten-free, high-protein products.”