Homegrown and much-loved Mexican Burrito Bar chain Boojum are determined not to let a global pandemic dampen their impressive appetite for growth and have partnered with another local heavyweight, Henderson Group to launch a brand new range of retail ready meals.

For the Boojum addicts out there, and there are many, this is not a drill! The award winning brand are bringing their famous, restaurant-ready Mexican flavours to shelves near you!

The new range hit shelves on Wednesday and will be available to buy from select SPAR, EUROSPAR, ViVO and ViVOXTRA stores across Northern Ireland. Meaning whether you’re in central Belfast or coastal Ballycastle, you’re now only minutes away from getting your Mexican fix.

Prepared fresh daily by Boojum’s own chefs, using the exact same high-quality ingredients, seasonings and spices used in Boojum’s restaurants, the new range upon launch will offer a choice of a rich, spicy beef chilli made with 100% Northern Irish beef or a smoky, saucy three-bean chilli that’s ideal for vegans, vegetarians and flexitarians.

Both ready meals come served with a side of fluffy basmati rice and are high in protein and low in fat, saturates and sugar. Perfect for picking up in-store and pinging in the microwave to spice up a busy lunchtime or weeknight meal in minutes.

David Maxwell, Boojum Managing Director, said: “Plans for launching a retail option have been on the cards for some time now, but the idea for this new ready meal range was actually born of our own resilient and innovative response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Back in April 2020, we partnered with charity FareShare NI to deliver 15,000 ready meal versions of our much-loved Beef Chilli and vegan 3 Bean Chilli to help support vulnerable people within local communities. The feedback on these was phenomenal and so, with a little creativity and the help of a great partner like Hendersons, the idea for our new range was born.

“Henderson Group has played a key role in Boojum’s continued growth over the years, so we’re delighted to have the opportunity to expand within their well established retail network to bring the exact taste of our restaurants to customers located right across Northern Ireland. Even if you’re not currently able to make it to a Boojum restaurant, you’re likely only a few minutes’ walk or drive away from your local SPAR, EUROSPAR, ViVO or ViVOXTRA.”

Excitement for the new product launch is echoed by partner Henderson Group, with Fresh Trading Manager Steven Kennedy adding “We know the Boojum brand very well and know the draw the brand has, especially to a younger shopper demographic, those looking for convenience but equally quality and value at the same time. This range ticks all those boxes so we’re delighted to be bringing these products to our shelves, providing further growth opportunities thanks to our distribution network.”

The new ready meals are the latest new offering in what’s been proven to be an unprecedented year for Boojum, with the nation’s favourite burrito bar forced to roll with the punches of the COVID-19 pandemic and innovate to quickly respond to ever-shifting customer demands.

In the past year, the brand has rapidly pivoted towards new and fully contactless digital ordering methods, including the launch of a brand-new mobile app that allows customers to order their favourite Boojum menu items, pay via mobile wallet and collect loyalty rewards, all completely contact-free.

The ready meals also come fresh off the back of the new Boojum At Home meal kit range, launched in July 2020. Available delivered to your door anywhere across the island of Ireland, each meal kit contains everything Boojum lovers need to cook up their own authentic Mexican feast for four at home.

David Maxwell said: “Nothing beats the experience of being in a Boojum restaurant but given the current circumstances we needed to give customers the ability to order safely, whether that’s via contactless Click ‘N Collect placed on the app or now with the option to enjoy the exact same food we serve in-store, at home.

“COVID-19 has forced all businesses to get creative and think on their feet, and the launch of this retail range is just the latest in a number of strategic shifts we’ve made in order to respond to evolving consumer demands, to innovate and to focus on continued growth even after such a devastating year for the hospitality industry.

“Our Boojum At Home meal kits have been a massive success for us since they launched last July, but we’re also keenly aware that plenty of people will want something that they can just grab and go.

“Speed and convenience have always been at the core of the Boojum brand, but crucially without sacrificing on quality or flavour. We’re delighted Boojum fans and first timers alike can now enjoy the exact same tastes and ingredients that put our restaurants on the map, nearly as quickly as our staff can roll your burrito in store!”

With a renewed focus on innovation the business is confident it will continue to drive sales despite the challenging trading environment, with new products, an improved digital offering and of course new flavours all on the menu for the brand that is clearly hungry for growth.