Whittaker’s and Griffin’s have colluded in sugary goodness to produce a limited edition product mashup called the 'Hundreds and Thousands Bar' that combines Cookie Bears, chocolate and a significant sprinkling of hundreds and thousands.
And to promote their product fusion, which was released on 21 July and will be available for only three months, the co-conspirators have taken over the Herald's homepage and also launched a competition via a Facebook-hosted microsite that encourages Kiwis to cover random items in hundreds and thousands and then send in images of the results.
Thus far Kiwis have covered shoes, their nails, their faces and even the Wellington sign in the colourful sprinkles. And while there has been a steady stream of entries, the most active hundreds and thousands distributor has been none other than James Henry Whittaker. Who would’ve thought that social media excitement would be the thing to bring him back from the other side?
Those, like Mr Whittaker, who enter the competition stand a chance of winning one of the new blocks of chocolate. And, while this might not seem like much, the point of the promotion is really to encourage Kiwis to get a little crazy with the edible decorations. In this sense, entering is more about having fun rather than winning a massive prize.
The latest product collaboration follows on from last year’s flavour collision between L&P and Whittaker’s white milk chocolate resulting in the L&P Block, which Whittaker's brand manager Jasmine Currie says was extremely popular.
"The response we had for our L&P campaign was huge," she says. "It was the biggest product launch we have ever done and the sales results reflected this."
This time the competitive lines between the companies are a little narrower, but Whittaker’s marketing manager Holly Whittaker says that they’ve found solidarity in their shared Kiwi heritage (Griffin’s was founded in New Zealand in 1864 and Whittaker’s in 1896).
“Griffin’s and Whittaker’s are both New Zealand producers that successfully compete with large-scale international importers,” she said in a release. “We have our New Zealand fans to thank for that, and we thought they would enjoy us teaming-up to create a special treat.”
Griffin’s general manager of sales and marketing Josette Prince mirrored this narrative by saying: “We’re delighted to be working with Whittaker’s – we share many of the same values such as a commitment to quality, engaging with consumers and a passion for New Zealand.”
Although 150 years of history has cemented Griffin’s history as a Kiwi brand, the company was recently sold to Philippines-based Universal Robina Corporation for $700 million (it was previously owned by Australian-based Pacific Equity Partners and before that by French-based Danone).
Griffin’s chief executive Alison Taylor told the Herald that this move is part of the plan to lift exports to more than 50 percent of sales within the next five years.
In 2013, about a third of Griffin’s $280.8 million annual revenue came from imports, a massive jump from the two to three percent contribution recorded in 2006.
On a related side note, the recent product mashup between Whittaker’s and Griffin’s got the StopPress staff thinking about products that we would like to see combined.
Here’s a list of a few of our ideas:
- Garlicky beef mince milk: for those days when you want a shortcut to making a lasagne.
- Red Bull and Xanax: ideal on days when you don’t want to be too hyped or too relaxed.
- Chocolate bacon: some things are so wonderful apart that we sometimes just need to have them together.
- Coke Zero and Mentos: just to see if anyone is capable of packaging it.
- Up n Go mince pies: mmm … a soggy breakfast and lunch in one meal.
So, dear readers, what mashups would you like to see?