Leftovers is our look at a few of the product ideas popping up everywhere. Some are intriguing, some sound amazing and some are the kinds of ideas we would never dream of. We can't write about everything that we get pitched, so here are some leftovers pulled from our inboxes.
Hidden Valley Ranch finds a new way to roll off your lips
The popular salad dressing is partnering with Burt’s Bees to create lip balm in four flavors: Hidden Valley Ranch, Buffalo Sauce, Crunchy Celery and Fresh Carrot. Hidden Valley Ranch and Burt’s Bees are both owned by consumer care products company Clorox.
The Burt’s Bees x Hidden Valley Ranch Dippers lip balm 4-packs will be available on Burt’s Bees website for $11.99 for a limited time.
"We are officially in wing eating season, which feels right at home for Hidden Valley Ranch,” CC Ciafone, the marketing director at Hidden Valley Ranch, said in a statement. "As we inch closer to the biggest wing consumption day of the year, we are looking forward to teaming up with Burt’s Bees for this never-been-done-before collab - and our first foray into the beauty category!"
In what has become a growing trend in food, the impetus for the new Hidden Valley Ranch lip balm came from an April Fools social post two years ago. Fans of the dressing were excited that Clorox decided to turn it into a real product, the company said.
Hidden Valley Ranch has developed a cult-like following among consumers. It has capitalized and built on that popularity by extending the brand into new categories and engaging in unique promotional activities.
Last year, it collaborated with Van Leeuwen on ranch-flavored ice cream, and a 2021 holiday gift package sold by Hidden Valley featured eggnog combined with its signature seasoning. More recently, it partnered with Idahoan for Hidden Valley Ranch mashed potatoes and potato shreds.
— Christopher Doering
McCormick debuts catchy new seasoning line
McCormick & Co debuted a new line of seasonings, coined Flavor Makers, to enhance the home cook experience from prep to plate, the company said.
The new collection became available this week on Amazon, and DTC via its website, and will soon be available on Walmart’s site. It features 15 blends and looks to enhance the flavor of any dish for any level of cooking expertise.
The purpose of the new line is to be used as both an ingredient during the cooking process and as a topping for presentation and an extra zing of flavor.
Each flavor was crafted with McCormick spices and no additives. From Pasta-tively Obsessed, Hopeless Ramen-tic and I’m So Hooked, each flavor hopes to bring the fun back to the cooking process.
McCormick executives believe consumers are looking for simple ways to season dishes in the New year, and the company is inspiring meals on its social channels, including Instagram and TikTok. The McCormick Flavor Maker App is another way for consumers to connect with the brand and start meal planning, it said.
Despite its efforts to connect with consumers and home cooks, McCormick has experienced lower sales volumes as consumers looked to cheaper private-label alternatives for spices and seasonings amid a cost-of-living crisis.
The company’s fourth-quarter volumes declined 3% compared with last year.
— Elizabeth Flood
Ocean Spray brings a lower-sugar brand to the juice aisle
A leader in the juice segment is fighting back against declining interest in the category by launching a new brand aimed at nutrition-minded consumers.
Ocean Spray unveiled Revl Fruits, calling it a “joyful, bright, flavor-bursting antidote to its dusty counterparts.” The drink contains 100% juice infused with coconut water. Each serving holds 21 grams of sugar per 8 ounces, 25% less than leading juice brands, according to the press release. The line includes four flavors: Boldly Cran, Tart Cherry, Berry Wild and Truly Tropical.
Besides having a lower sugar content, Revl Fruits is fashioning itself as a more affordable alternative to premium juices that carry a high price point. A billboard for the brand in Los Angeles reads “Good juice shouldn’t cost $15.” The juices are available on Amazon and select grocery stores, with a wider retail launch throughout the country set for later this year.
“Revl Fruits believes that premium juice doesn't have to mean heavy glass bottles, excessive pricing, a boring experience, or lackluster taste. Revl Fruits allows consumers to celebrate the joy of juice without the compromise,” said Christina Zwicky, the brand’s head of marketing, in the press release.
Another way the products differentiate themselves from traditional Ocean Spray products is through packaging. In lieu of plastic, the juices are available in TetraPak paperboard cartons.
Ocean Spray has worked to change its traditional product lineup and nutritional profile in recent years as younger consumers have largely abandoned fruit juice because of its high sugar content. Last November, the company debuted zero sugar varieties of its cranberry juice, sweetened with stevia. Other new juice from the brand launched in 2023 contain ingredients designed to boost immunity and hydrate: vitamins C and E and electrolytes.
By launching Revl Fruits, Ocean Spray is making a bid to win over younger consumers with its more youthful branding. But its success remains to be seen, as the overall juice category is bleeding. Last year, volumes of juice products declined 5.6% in the year ending August 13, despite prices increasing 12.7%, according to Circana data reported by BevNet.
— Chris Casey