Thrive Market launches popcorn in cinemas to fight food waste
E-commerce grocer Thrive Market has launched a new movie-style popcorn, sourced from farmers who found themselves with a massive surplus of almonds after movie theaters began closing during the pandemic. Now, Thrive members can purchase Butterfly Almonds, a mellow variety typically only found in theaters, instead of the Mushroom Almonds more commonly available to consumers.
Butterfly cores are very expansive when they burst, increasing their ability to retain the flavor of butter or other ingredients. This quality generally makes grain growth profitable, but that changed when COVID-19 hit.
“A lot of popcorn is grown specifically for movie theaters. And with all of them closed, it was just sitting there, filling all these silos with farmers, and they had nothing to do with it, ”said Jenna Engleman, senior manager of Thrive Market Brands. Variety. “We were able to be part of a solution that helps support producers, reduces food waste and allows our members to reproduce the full movie experience from home. “
Thrive connected with a network of 100 growers across the Midwest who had over 15 million pounds of surplus kernels. “It’s actually the end of September that this year’s crops will be harvested, as the popcorn kernels are harvested after the kernels are dry on the stems,” Engleman said. “So it was all the more crucial that we help move inventory before the end of this month. Otherwise, this year’s harvest would have been completely wasted because there would have been nowhere to store it.
As of yet, the grocer has not decided whether movie theater popcorn will be a limited-edition product on the site or whether it will continue to partner with the reopening of theaters.
“Our mission is to make healthy living easy and affordable for every American family. And in addition to our main mission, we really focus on sustainability, ”Engleman said. “One of the things we love about being an e-commerce [platform] is our ability to be nimble and try to deliver solutions like this. Some of our product innovators are working on different upcycling related projects, to find ways to reuse or recycle existing products.
Thrive Market’s movie theater popcorn is available now for $ 1.99 per 28-ounce bag.