Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 4, 2013 06:45 PM
Dogfish Head Gets Spaced Out
Delaware brewery Dogfish Head is always up for experiments. Its latest is a small-batch Oktoberfest ale, Celest-jewel-ale, that features an ingredient probably never used before in the brewing process: moon dust.
According to Fox News, Dogfish made a deal with ILC Dover, which produces spacesuits for NASA, in order to have access to “lunar meteorites” that it ground up and put into the brew like a big teabag.
Much more experimental than that, though, is the brewery’s plan to open a 16-room, beer-themed hotel. It’ll open next year about 11 miles from the brewery, Eater.com reports. Each room will have its own micro-fridges and beer glasses as well as a bottle opener on the wall.
In the spirit of inventiveness, Dogfish has also created a little gadget known as the Randall Jr. that allows consumers to infuse their own beers with interesting ingredients and flavorings. At Dogfish, the brewers want everyone to catch the creativity bug.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 23, 2013 10:52 AM
Hershey is gearing up to take advantage of chocolate season—from Halloween through Christmas—but the company also has larger, longer-term goals in sight that amount to a significant refinement of its traditional approach.
The iconic confectionery brand is hot on portion-controlled, resealable packaging; is moving late but eagerly into international expansion; believes sustainability is important but not a sine qua non for its brands; and is open to making more acquisitions. All of that will help Hershey achieve its goal of reaching $10 billion in annual sales compared with the $6.6 billion it notched in 2012.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 5, 2013 01:54 PM
A.G. Lafley's first turn running Procter & Gamble was transformational for the company as he bought Gillette, shed the company's food brands and put innovation on a pedestal. For what he has called his "second shift," Lafley has indicated that his emphasis will be less on overhauling the company and more on making sure P&G as now constituted is doing the best that it can.
"I'm just elevating the focus on execution, everybody gets it," the P&G CEO said this week at the Barclays Back to School analysts conference in Boston. "When we execute, we like the results. What's more important, consumers like the results better, customers like the results better and in the end we like the results better and our shareholders like the results better."
Lafley said he's focusing on boosting productivity, "improving operating discipline," "investing in innovation and go-to-market capabilities" and "re-establishing value creation as our primary measure of success." He's also making some big bets by restrategizing some of P&G's iconic brands.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 4, 2013 01:52 PM
New/old CEO A.G. Lafley is beginning to shake things up at Procter & Gamble, and one of his most interesting first moves reportedly is to explore potential further value in one of the company's most iconic and lucrative brands: Tide.
One of the things that his predecessor/follower as CEO, Bob McDonald, did well was exploit the promise of Tide Pods, which he launched in early 2012 and which already are on their way to becoming another $1 billion sub-brand for P&G. Despite growing concerns and one reported death of kids poisoning themselves by mistaking the colorful Pods for candy, Tide has managed to grow quickly—and dominate—a laundry-detergent segment that it essentially created.
But Tide Pods—which recently debuted in new, opaque packaging to curb temptation from kids—are priced above regular liquid Tide. American detergent buyers have steadily drifted to bargain-priced products to do their laundry over the last few years in adjusting to a stingier "new normal," but even regular Tide has retained a price premium.
Now Lafley is pulling the lever on a lower-price gambit for Tide that has always made the company hesitant. He announced today at the Barclays Back to School conference in Boston that P&G plans to release a lower-priced, mid-tier detergent, Tide Simply Clean & Fresh, in February, according to an AP report that noted other Tide products launching in the first quarter.Continue reading...
Posted by Alicia Ciccone on July 26, 2013 06:27 PM
Americans Like Small Batch, Sweet Liquors
2012 saw a rise in liquor sales that many felt was indicative of a stronger economy, as more and more people are setting aside some cash for indulging and imbibing. However, as Ad Age notes, the top two trending liquors are quite different, and provide a unique picture of today's culture.
Small-batch browns, primarily Irish whiskey and single-malt scotch, and flavored vodka showed the most growth. Could the two liquors—and their fans—be any more different? Oddly enough, the boost in sales of both may be rooted in the same natural, health-conscious motivations.
Consumers are seeking out the basics, looking to "get in touch with what they believe to be a more real world," according to Melanie Howard of the Future Foundation. While there has been a surge in down-home, small batch distilleries cooking up great whiskey, flavored vodkas aren't exactly natural. But they are less caloric than all the sugary mixers one would use to mask the taste of straight, non-flavored vodka.Continue reading...
calling all moms
Posted by Dale Buss on July 12, 2013 02:48 PM
Clearing a stubborm obstacle to the phenomenal growth of its new Tide Pods franchise—and presumably saving some curious children from severe sickness—Procter & Gamble has clothed the laundry-detergent pouches in new bulk packaging.
Tide Pods now come in a round plastic bin that features opaque orange where before there was a transparent surface through which consumers could see the individually packaged pods; they also come in newly opaque bags. Little kids could see the Tide Pods in the bowls, too, and to many of them the brightly colored, circular Pods looked like candy. Nearly 5,000 American little kids were exposed to single-load laundry-detergent packets like Tide Pods in the first half of this year, down from more than 6,200 last year, according to the Wall Street Journal.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 9, 2013 03:52 PM
Responding to increased awareness of health concerns and economic hardship, Coca-Cola is launching a slimline 250ml can in the UK and co-branding with Spotify, inviting consumers to engage with its Coke Placelists, which encourage consumers to tag where they are listening to music while imbibing on their Coke beverage.
The slimmer cans are rolling out across the company’s MyCoke portfolio which includes Coca-Cola, Diet Coke and Coke Zero, and are the latest in the soft-drink giant’s innovative marketing initiatives ranging from personalized bottles to twist-apart shareable cans.
"Through the small can we are really trying hard to find the right connection," said Jon Woods, GM Coca-Cola for the UK and Ireland told The Telegraph, noting that with families' weekly disposable income down 5 percent in recent years, the new can is "our most affordable pack ever."Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 10, 2013 03:47 PM
Greenpeace is targeting Coca-Cola in its latest campaign, a crowd-funded TV ad that is a call-to-action for Australia’s "Cash for Containers" recycling program, which they say the giant bottler has sabotaged. “Behind Coke’s slogans and sunshine, the beverage giant is trashing Australia,” said Reece Turner, senior campaigner at Greenpeace Australia Pacific.
In March, Coca-Cola won its court case to stop a recycling refund scheme in the Northern Territory—a program that doubled recycling rates and has run successfully in South Australia for more than 30 years, according to Greenpeace. The program added 10 cents to retail prices for manufacturers like Coke, but consumers would get a refund for recycling the containers in appropriate bins.
Clean Up Australia estimates that Australians use between 13 to 14 billion drinks containers a year and that 45 percent of the plastic waste that is collected on Clean Up Australia Day is beverage industry-related. “This loose rubbish is estimated to affect up to 65 percent of Australian seabirds. Some mistake the plastic for food. When they swallow too much, their tiny stomachs become so full they're unable to ingest any food—literally starving to death on a full stomach,” according to Greenpeace.Continue reading...