DENVER Quiznos, which has been on a roll this summer with new product development, has put a name to its process: the Flex Plan, which is designed to speed up the delivery of new menu items and promotions, company officials said Monday.
Quiznos founder and chief executive Rick Schaden presented the Flex Plan to franchisees at the chain's annual meeting in St. Louis last week. The tiered development strategy calls for simultaneous development of many products in a range of price points and production costs to more quickly respond to consumer feedback.
In recent weeks, Quiznos, which franchises more than 4,500 units, has debuted such items as its $4 Toasty Torpedo  and $3 Toasty Bullet , as well as its “Toasty Toasty” promotion, which offers one sandwich for a $1 when another is purchased at full price.
“It’s all about having the right foods at the right time and at the right price for consumer and the franchise owners,” said spokeswoman Ellen Kramer.
The industry has seen several operators step up new product rollouts, promotions and limited-time offers to encourage consumers to come back into their stores. Wendy's, for example, recently revamped its research and development process to increase new product offerings, which have a Coffee Toffee Twisted Frosty and boneless wings.
At Quiznos, it was a matter of putting a name to something it had already started, Kramer said.
“We are talking to consumers more and to franchise owners more and having a lot of things in the product development pipeline ready to launch in much shorter time frames,” she said.
Also on Monday, Quiznos announced the winner of its “Where Do You Torpedo?” contest. More than 260 contestants submitted photos and videos demonstrating how to eat the Toasty Torpedo in unusual places or doing unexpected activities.
Ryan Leer, a communications major at the University of Wisconsin-Superior took the $10,000 first prize for his video_ “Special Delivery.” Finalist entries were posted on www.toastytorpedo.com  and viewers voted for the best submission.