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Talk to Humzingers about picnics and be in with a chance of winning a hamper of goodies

(154 Posts)
TheOtherHelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 21-May-13 13:48:43

Humzingers have asked us to find out where MNers stand on picnics for the family, now that summer is just around the corner (surely it must be?!)

Here is what Humzingers have to say about their product: "Humzingers are designed to be convenient and offer variety - they're 100% fruit sticks with no added sugar and are foil wrapped for freshness. What's more, each fruit stick counts as one of your five-a-day!"

Humzingers want to make sure that they keep Mums' opinions in mind when they're creating new products so they're interested to know your thoughts on the questions below.

Everyone who posts on this thread will be entered into a prize draw to win a hamper of goodies worth £100.

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?

Thanks and good luck with the prize draw
MNHQ

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?

*It is important and I try and make sure that we have fruit with us and usually some veg sticks as well. Since DS is only 19 months, I choose but I do let him help me and he will usually decide he wants some crisps, cheese and babycorn in the mix.

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?

We sometimes buy Humzingers and also yogurt covered raisins or the cola/orange/apple flavoured raisins.

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?

Make it bright! Fruit and veg comes in all sorts of wonderful varieties and I think the more colour there is the more appealing it is. Cheese goes brilliant with grapes and greek yogurt is lovely with fruit so dippy sticks of these make healthy picnics easy.

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?

More flavours and varieties, lots of things that appeal to children like games on the packets and their favourite kids characters.

HamletsSister Tue 21-May-13 15:46:52

We pack only the most delicious things on a picnic, regardless of their healthiness, or otherwise. However, we all think fruit and salad are delicious (not all salad, one child doesn't eat anything that is a leaf!) and would choose to eat them, but not in a counting it out sort of way. We usually take things like olives, bread, dips, veg sticks. We often barbecue at the beach and so that involves lots and lots of meat.

We do - we love Bear Fruit and always had raisins and things as snacks when they were younger.

Top tips - take what you know will be eaten but bring them up to eat as wide a variety as possible. However, it is just one meal out of many so, to be honest, who cares if they only eat sausages?

My children are older, so portion size is an issue. If we buy dried fruit snacks, they need about 5 packets to even begin to touch the sides. This means that dried fruit can only be a small treat as it doesn't fill them up, and it can be expensive. However, both eat dried fruit in preference to sweeties, so that can't be bad.

UnChartered Tue 21-May-13 15:54:20

Here is what Humzingers have to say about their product: "Humzingers are designed to be convenient and offer variety - they're 100% fruit sticks with no added sugar and are foil wrapped for freshness. What's more, each fruit stick counts as one of your five-a-day!"

well bugger me, and i thought apples/bananas/grapes/strawberries already had no added sugar and grew their own handy wrapper hmm

and the last time i looked they were part of the '5-a-day'

[innocent face]

BedHog Tue 21-May-13 15:57:29

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?
I choose a balance of snacks that the children will eat, some healthy, others less so.

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?
Yes, we buy Humzingers and other similar products, or sometimes yogurt coated raisins or fruit flakes.

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?
Take lots of different types of fruit, chopped into bitesize pieces, and some skewers so everyone can make fruit kebabs. Chocolate sauce optional!

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?
My children like Humzingers (with the exception of tropical flavour) but it would help if they didn't look like something an owl had regurgitated! Maybe you could package them with a fruit or yogurt dip, or a liquid centre? Or press mould them into funny shapes with different types of fruit within one unit, maybe a star with each point made from a different fruit?

BedHog Tue 21-May-13 15:59:09

Oh, and the Humzinger packaging is really hard to open, btw. The crimped bit at the end just doesn't tear open very easily.

gazzalw Tue 21-May-13 15:59:33

Humzingers are a bit of a staple in this house although DS has rather gone off them but he's awkward hmm.

When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not?

It is a factor but as a picnic is essentially a fab treat, it's by no means the overriding thing to consider when choosing scrummy picnic food. Having said that, DW would not pack a picnic without celery, grapes, strawberries, cucumber and baby tomatoes...

And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?

It's a democratic decision so there will be some trade off of healthy snacks for crisps or tortilla chips....

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?

Yes, because they are less perishable and often less expensive than many of the more exotic fruits....

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?

Variety from the five main food groups but with some 'treats' such as crisps/cakes too so it is more fun and less difficult to persuade the children to eat the 'good stuff'!

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?

I'm not entirely sure. DD would happily eat the little boxes of raisins/sultanas etc...when she was little but I think the older children (post toddler years) grow out of those.

My two love the fruit 'leathers' you can get from Holland and Barrett (at some cost!) -flattened dried fruit but more inspiring flavours than normal dried fruit ones. DW has been buying the apricot equivalent from M&S (which seem better value for money) but would be good to have other fruits.

I think the recent Whitworths chocolate covered raisins is the way to go. Combine compatible fruits with a chocolate coating. Not ideal but if the 'fruit' component is 'pure' then surely it still counts and is appealing...

BedHog Tue 21-May-13 16:05:44

The Humzinger boxes with apple, pear, plum etc only seem to be available in Tesco Extra. Please could you try and get the other supermarkets to stock them, we're bored with the strawberry/blackcurrant etc flavours, and the tropical always get wasted.

CMOTDibbler Tue 21-May-13 16:16:22

We pack whatever we all fancy in the picnic - and this usually doesn't include sandwiches as I can't have them and dh and ds would rather include other things. Home made sushi rolls are very popular here. Theres a balance of what is in the house, what everyone fancies, and some balance of making sure it will keep ds going all day.

Our picnic always includes plenty of fruit and veg as we all enjoy eating them.

I don't buy dried fruit snacks apart from maybe some dried apricots as no one likes the processed ones very much, and ds certainly consumes his 5 a day no problem. I prefer him to eat real fruit anyway.

liveotherwise Tue 21-May-13 16:29:26

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?

5 a day isn't a huge factor in this house. I aim for balance and variety - I keep a full fruit bowl and we go through bananas in particular as though they're going out of fashion. For picnics I take a variety of fruit, something to suit each child (I have one who doesn't eat apples for example).

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?

I buy raisins sometimes, little boxes are handy to keep in my bag. They sometimes go with a packed lunch/ picnic.

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?

Variety. Nothing wrong with a sandwich though. Home made muesli bars (include dried fruit), bit of chocolate, some fresh fruit, maybe boiled eggs depending on how organised I am.

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?

I don't think that's up to companies tbh, and I'd really rather they didn't cover everything with child friendly characters. Food is food and should be presented as such.

supergreenuk Tue 21-May-13 16:34:49

I will try to always pack a portion of fruit be it a fruit pouch or raisins

Dried fruit snacks would be raisins or fruit flakes.

I don't always think picnics have to be healthy. It's an excuse to have a treat such as a sausage roll.

Tips? They just have to taste good. As simple as that.

We pack sandwich type stuff in picnics, whatever we pack can be eaten as a car picnic if when weather gets in the waysmile.
Always plastic plates and cutlery, always bread and spread, anything else is dependent on what we have in the cupboard.
We eat a fair few Humzingers, as DS is milk allergic so safe snacks are hard to come by.
Ideas for dried fruity snacks:
-Dried apricots filled with raspberry purée
-raisin necklace strung on fruit leather
-pear and apple crisps

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?

5-a-day does factor but it's not the be all and end all. Picnics here are rare (rainy Manchester) so it's a treat.

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?

Yes but I'm more likely to buy it for lunch boxes. My dcs love Humzingers for lunch boxes.

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?

Not sure really. Children will eat what they are used to. You have to make it appeal to the parents buying it surely.

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?

Top tips are being able to eat with fingers something easily accessible. My dcs really just like to bomb about rather than sit down when we have a picnic. They like to come back, take a bite or two and run off again.

pooka Tue 21-May-13 16:47:37

I choose what gets packed in a picnic, although if they were in the kitchen when I was doing it they'd probably make suggestions.

I do usually have something fruity - strawberries/grapes etc. - and also carrot/cucumber batons. Some smoothies and job done really.

We've long been users of humzingers - but more for everyday rather than picnics (I remember demanding that ocado stock them because they didn't in early days). Tend to have a couple floating around in my bran tub of a bag for rations on the go. Also kids are fans of Cheerios and raisins in a tub (the younger 2 more than my eldest).

With regards to top tips - I don't really make a massive effort to pack a healthy picnic, more to get a balance of stuff they will eat. I know they like grapes and strawberries and will always eat some of those with their sandwiches or crisps. Ds1 loves houmus and carrots, so that's always a winner. More often than not though, a picnic is a fun treat and so I'm not desperately worried if they turn into a Pringles-fest as its only one meal out of a day.

I can't really think how to make dried fruit snacks more appealing. I'd maybe take a leaf out of steal their marketing team innocent's book as they seem very appealing as a brand to my children, which is great.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 21-May-13 16:48:45

When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?

I don't believe in the 5 a day thing. It was dreamt up by the fruit marketing people in America - so no that doesn't affect my choice. I choose the snacks because I purchase them.

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?
No

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?
For me healthy food is as non-processed as possible. So I'd be packing: roast chicken, salads, cold cuts of meat, home made mayo, hard boiled eggs, couscous, nice cheeses, chutneys & pickles, home made cake & biscuits.

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?
I don't think foods should appeal to children. Food manufacturers should try to sell wholesome food without ripping off their suppliers or consumers.

Florin Tue 21-May-13 16:53:39

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?
My son is only 10 months old so we choose. He eats most things however we do try as pack things that aren't too messy! They will always include some fruit and veg
~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?
Yes we buy boxes of raisins and also humzingers. We adore humzingers as they are so handy we keep some in the car, some in the pushchair and some in the changing bag so we have them with us at all times. They are so useful for those little emergencies such as when a restaurant is taking a while with our food or he gets hungry in the supermarket queue. I have has the odd one too when I have forgotten to eat breakfast!
I have told all our baby mates about them as they work so well for babies as they are healthy filling and an easy shape for them to hold, now most of the babies we know eat them!

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?
Variety some healthy things he likes some new things for him to try and a few back ups incase he won't eat anything.
~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?
Brightly coloured packets, cartoons on the box

CheeryCherry Tue 21-May-13 16:56:04

If it's an impromptu picnic, it usually consists of whatever we have in the kitchen. If organised, I usually do a variety of sandwiches/wraps, slices of melon, tub of washed cherry tomatoes, carrot&cucumber sticks, washed strawberries, big bag of crisps to share, frozen frubes and some flapjack. Always some fruit and some veg, I do consider their 5 a day.
I don't tend to buy dried fruit for picnics, we prefer fresh. But do sometimes buy them for packed lunches/snacks in the car.
Variety is the way to go for a healthy picnic, and good quality fresh food.
Different sized packets would be s

CheeryCherry Tue 21-May-13 16:57:57

Sorry...would be useful, as they grow older, the tiny packets are not filling enough. We like the more 'exotic' favours like mango, papaya, pineapple.

K8Middleton Tue 21-May-13 16:58:27

What mums think?

Well this mother thinks mums is a bit patronising and sexist. Perhaps they mean parents? Unless the kitchen and food prep is wimmins work, in which case ask away. Dh has given his permission wink

500internalerror Tue 21-May-13 17:07:40

We love humzingers - I'm eating one in the park at the moment!

They are too small tho; good for toddlers or a tiny addition to a lot of other picnic foods.

Sadly, the kids are influenced by packaging, so this is a major consideration. The only thing they won't eat, in any guise or coating, is raisins!

Re the picnic contents, I choose - but of course it's based on what they prefer. And they choose a 'treat' from their stash (Easter leftovers!)

Messandmayhem Tue 21-May-13 17:16:02

1) my dc are 3 and 1 so I choose the picnic snacks, I like to have healthy options and they like most things so picnics usually involve lots of fruit.

2) I do buy dried fruit for picnics about 50% of the time because its unlikely to cause much mess and I can use it to bribe the kids out of the park at home time!

3) healthy picnics? Shocking! grin our picnics usually are quite simple, so I will take some cheese, apples and maybe grapes, and some cooked chicken, breadsticks and a tub of soft cheese for dipping, plus either some sort of dried fruit thing. So my top tip is to keep it simple, picking a cheese and chicken is perfectly healthy and far more appealing to my kids (who want to be on the go) than sitting down to eat something that needs a knife and fork.

4) I don't know, my DC love dried fruit snacks already!

bluecarrot Tue 21-May-13 17:17:12

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves?

We pick together and usually snacks like carrot sticks with dip, grapes, berries etc. All easy to nibble on in between running off to play.

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?

No, we have fresh, but I do keep some in the car boot as "emergency rations", along with water.

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?

A wide variety of colours, and a good mix of sweet and savoury. I tend to stick to water to drink.

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children?

My DD loves dried fruit anyway, but Ive seen mindees go for the fruit leather type things in shapes and bars in fun packaging.

SacreBlue Tue 21-May-13 17:29:12

Declaring from get go that I have never even heard of Humzingers let alone tried them so my replies are based on products available from supermarkets or health food shops

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves? Our diet is very varied and a variety of taste and texture is as important as 5 a day choices. I ask DS if his friends have preferences but for the most part I know what his tastes are and just pick accordingly

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family? I like them for the car and for cooking with, we do have a snack box but they never last very long in there so if we are going on a picnic I buy them on the day or just before

~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic? use a wheeled suitcase! We pack so many varieties of foods that we take mountains of food with us. Health wise - popping fruit in freezer (esp grapes/berries) on hot days means they are at least cool but preferably still a bit frozen when we get to eat - makes them more attractive esp to younger kids. Lots of finger foods and dips - small portions, easy to eat and dips mean lots of healthy crudités can be enjoyed without getting bored of flavour

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children? our ones liked the individual little boxes of raisins - everyone can have their own and avoids 'sticky, germy finger' comments by the older kids of the toddlers in the group. No additives, lots of variety, and maybe a rating hard to soft? I like banana chips, raises and mango pieces (not the strips) and they are hard to medium to soft. This would help if you know your child likes crunchy offerings, or chewy or soft.

WouldBeHarrietVane Tue 21-May-13 17:37:42

My healthy picnic would consist of:

Fresh fruit
Sandwich
Cucumber
Water in a sippy cup

DS wouldn't necessarily eat it all smile

Taffeta Tue 21-May-13 17:38:23

~ When you choose snacks to take on a picnic, is giving your children their 5-a-day a factor in your choices or not? And do you usually choose what snacks your children get on a picnic or do they choose themselves

Yes consider ow much of picnic is fruit and veg. I used to choose but the older they get, they are 9 and 6 now, the more involved in choice they want to be

~ Do you ever buy dried fruit snacks for picnics with your family?
Yes often. We regularly have dates, or fruit strings, dried apple, dried apricot,or little bags of mixed dried fruit
~ What are your top tips on packing a healthy picnic?
Vary it. Lots of interesting different things, incl carb protein fruit and veg. Pre cut fresh fruit and veg to make it easier to eat. Try to keep fresh fruit cold.

~ How do you think companies can make dried fruit snacks more appealing to children
Fruit strings are v popular here as they look and taste like sweets, with different colours etc. IME how the actual product looks and tastes has more impact than the packaging

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