Monday, July 20, 2015

Mamma Chia, Chia Squeeze (Strawberry Banana) - Summer Fancy Food Show Samples

Mamma Chia, Chia Squeeze (Strawberry Banana) - Summer Fancy Food Show Samples
Must resist the urge to make an ABBA or Chia Pet reference...

I'm getting ready to head to Baltimore on Thursday, so things are really crazy right now. I'm barely sleeping, I'm making a ton of art, and I'm trying to hurry up and review any and all of the perishable products I picked up in NY before they expire.

When I was leaving the convention center there were a few trucks lined up outside handing out food products. I'm guessing they either couldn't get a booth at the event, or maybe they did have a booth and just wanted extra publicity, but either way, it was more free stuff and this time it was available to the general public as well as show attendees. Since Chia is super popular right now, I thought it'd be fun to give this a try.

This squeeze-packaging concept isn't new, since Asian companies have been selling juices in similar pouches for years, and Canada also sells their milk in a similar plastic bag, but it's finally becoming more common here in America. There are now several companies selling fruit purees in these Capri-Sun-esque packages, and while this looks really cool, I don't really understand the benefits of this packaging versus a yogurt cup. Is it just that this requires no spoon? It's a neat concept, and I guess it's great for small children who still struggle with spoons and feeding themselves, but (since I worked at a daycare) I can tell you that this might not eliminate messy eating. Little kids love to squeeze these packages and watch this stuff will still get everywhere.

As far as the product design, this is very colorful. I love how the seed shapes make a flower, and the warm colors are really pleasant. I feel like the type choices aren't as strong as their sense of color and imagery, and that takes away from it's overall look, but it's still pretty attractive.

I twisted off the cap and gave this a try. Texturally, I could see some people having a problem with this. It's kind of like little tapioca pearls floating inside baby food, which is the nice way of putting it. The gross version is that I feel like I'm eating frog eggs. Since I like rice pudding and tapioca pudding, the texture doesn't bother me at all, but I know a lot of people who would hate this just because of it's mouth feel.

As far as taste, it tastes like strawberry banana baby food, it's sweet, authentic, and mushy, with tiny bits of gooey, but crunchy, chia seeds. Since I like strawberry and banana, I thought it tasted great. It's kind of like a thick fruit smoothie on the go, but curiosity got the better of me, and I squired some of this stuff into my hand to get a better look.

It's....not pretty. Bananas oxidize pretty quickly, so I am guessing that's why it's so...brown. This is why the packaging isn't transparent. That little panel on the front (towards the bottom) is a printed image, not a window. I can't blame them. Would you guys eat this is you could see it? It may look gross, but it tastes pretty good. I could see these being a great on-the-go breakfast item for people driving into work, or a good way to get more fruit into your kid's diet. To be honest, I don't know if I'd buy a whole case of these for myself, due to my stomach issues I can't eat breakfast on my way to work, or I'll get sick, but it was really interesting. I might check out other flavors if they come in individual packages.
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  1. Are those chunks seeds from the strawberry or chia seeds? I could be wrong, but I always thought unless chia seeds were ground you don't get any of their nutritional benefits because they pass right through you o.o

  2. Actually - unlike flax seed, chia seeds do not have a hard shell and do not need to be ground in order to benefit from their nutrients.