- Kraft Heinz will begin promoting its extension of the Cracker Barrel cheese brand into the macaroni and cheese segment.
- The Cracker Barrel brand mac and cheese will contain liquid cheese and be positioned as a premium alternative to Kraft Heinz's other macaroni and cheese products, which are primarily powdered cheese-based.
- The goal of the product and its debut campaign are to lure consumers who prefer to buy prepared macaroni and cheese from restaurants or grocery coolers over shelf-stable varieties in the center-store aisles.
Kraft Heinz already dominates the macaroni and cheese segment with the Kraft brand, so the question is whether and how much the Cracker Barrel brand could affect sales of Kraft Heinz's own existing portfolio.
Kraft has already faced stiff competition from natural and organic mac and cheese brands like Annie's (owned by General Mills). Kraft Heinz responded by removing artificial ingredients from the product and quietly releasing the reformulated version in December before officially promoting the change last month. The company aimed to prove that it could preserve the product's flavor even while finding natural ingredient alternatives.
But Kraft Heinz is positioning Cracker Barrel differently than the Kraft brand by using ingredients and marketing to attract other consumers. A segment of Kraft mac and cheese buyers could switch to the Cracker Barrel brand, but with the right positioning, Kraft Heinz may be able to attract more mac and cheese lovers to the company as a whole, a win-win for the company.