Meat snacks used to be an uninspiring category. Sales were largely limited to convenience stores and gas stations, and the products themselves were often greasy, unhealthy and laden with preservatives. Over the past decade, however, the category has transformed as new brands began aligning with what consumers want, creating healthier, clean label options.
Innovation in meat snacks started in the jerky category. Better-for-you brands hit the shelves with premium flavor profiles and clean labels. That proved to be a winning combination. Look no further than the hundreds of millions of dollars in sales from a company like KRAVE to see how brands are successfully changing consumer perception of the jerky category. Despite these innovations, one area within the meat snacking category has noticeably lagged—pork rinds. A quick Google search will bring up pictures of legacy brands, stale flavor profiles, and very few health or functional benefits.
Enter 4505 Meats, the company behind the all natural product 4505 Chicharrones. While working at his popular San Francisco restaurant 4505 Burgers and BBQ, chef Ryan Farr first started making kettle cooked chicharrones in his home kitchen. Farr sold these chicharrones at local bars and farmer’s markets around San Francisco. Word quickly spread around town and the chicharrones became the must-have snack. As sales grew, Farr started packaging the product and selling them into local grocery stores. Fast forward to today and 4505 Chicharrones can be found in over 1,000 stores across the country.
Farr is bringing his culinary experience and modern branding to this category that lacks much innovation. 4505 Chicharrones comes in sleek, matte colored packaging and flavors such as chili salt, smokehouse BBQ, and jalapeno cheddar. Additionally, 4505 Chicharrones is a snack satisfying key functional qualities and emerging trends. It’s high in protein, low in carbohydrates, low in sugar, and gluten-free—in other words- filling, clean, protein packed and delicious. Perhaps most importantly, 4505 exclusively sources all natural, humanely raised pork to produce chicharrones.
We first met Ryan at Expo West in 2017. Helio, our machine learning platform, ranked 4505’s brand strength in the top decile for the food category, highlighting strong engagement and growth across social media. Helio also identified 4505’s rapidly expanding distribution outside of Northern California. After meeting Ryan and his team in-person, it was clear that they have the authentic vision and strong strategy for shaking up the pork rind category. When a consumer walks the snack aisle, they want to experience best in class products with no compromise on taste. Ryan and his team have done an amazing job at delivering on that.
We’re thrilled to announce our investment in and partnership with 4505 Chicharrones, which will help support the company’s continued growth in national grocery chains and future product development. We couldn’t be more excited to help them continue the mission of delivering the best all natural chicharrones to a broad audience. In 4505’s own words — Go Pig or Go Home!