With the introduction of its Breakfast Empanada Bites, 7-Eleven joins the growing lists of brands trying to reach Hispanics. The store is building on the success of its first Latin-inspired hot foods snack introduced last year, Mini Tacos.

“Breakfast and snacking are both growth areas in the food industry and strong day parts for 7-Eleven,” said Kelly Buckley, 7-Eleven vice president of fresh food innovation. “Mornings are our busiest time of day, and 7-Eleven is a destination for snacks and drinks all day long. The Empanadas Bites meet a need for a hot, savory, high-protein breakfast and a snack option. And, at a dollar for three, customers can get big flavor on a budget.”

As the fastest-growing U.S. demographic, Hispanics are an important core customer group for 7-Eleven; however, it was the popularity of Latin American foods among all demographic groups spurring the addition of a snack-size breakfast empanada.

Ethnic foods are booming, closing in on $3 billion annually in sales. Mintel Research, which divides ethnic foods in four major categories – Mexican/Hispanic, Asian, Indian and Other – projects strong growth in the future. Today, Mexican/Hispanic accounts for well over half of ethnic food sales and considered mainstream by many.

“One of today’s biggest food trends is something I call ‘flavor adventure,'” Buckley said, “and the Breakfast Empanada Bites add a little zing to the morning meal. With a cup of 7-Eleven Brazilian Dark Roast coffee, they’re sure to wake up you and your taste buds.”

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