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.
All I want for Christmas is Mariah's Cookies
Mariah Carey has been inextricably linked to Christmas since her 1994 hit, "All I Want for Christmas is You.”
And if all you really want for Christmas are cookies bearing the pop diva's name, you’re in luck. Mariah’s Cookies launched earlier this month. The joint venture between the singer and Virtual Dining Concepts bakes cookies in ghost kitchens and delivers them to consumers in much of the U.S.
The cookies come in a variety of flavors, ranging from Chocolate Chunk to White Chocolate Cranberry to Heath Bar. The lineup also includes two seasonal flavors: Pumpkin and Gingerbread.
The cookies look like they could lead to one sweet day — especially while consumers are staying at home during the coronavirus pandemic. But while the website features Carey’s photograph, it doesn’t say whether she played any role in developing the recipe. Carey is known for her voice and not her kitchen prowess, which she spoofed in a Funny or Die video in 2015. A quote from a press release reported on by several media outlets leaves the link between the singing legend and the cookies unclear.
“Yay, cookies! We love ’em….love ’em during the holidays…..love ’em all year round!!” Carey said in the release.
Regardless of who made these cookies, it’s a good business move right now. As many consumers are stuck at home because of the pandemic, they’re reaching for more comfort food, especially cookies. According to IRI, the growth rate of cookies has nearly doubled in 2020 — up 6.6% for the 52 weeks ending Sept. 16, compared to 3.7% growth in 2019. And according to a Top Data poll in a Bloomberg story, almost 40% of consumers eat at least four dozen cookies per month.
Consumers see cookies as a sweet indulgence at any time. As consumers are more interested in food delivery, any service offering fresh-baked cookies brought to their doors is bound to get quite a bit of interest. And though Carey’s direct involvement with these treats may be little more than a fantasy, launching them during the pop legend’s trademark season will only sweeten sales.
— Megan Poinski
Martha Stewart wants space in your freezer
Now consumers can try Martha Stewart's recipes with a lot less effort.
This week, Marquee Brands and Mediacast Holdings announced the launch of Martha Stewart Kitchen, a new CPG brand of frozen and prepared food products coming to the market through the newly formed MSK Foods.
From Tomato Tartlets and Uncured Bacon to Apple Crisp and Double Chocolate Brownie, the debut limited offering has 24 appetizers, side dishes and desserts available at grocery stores throughout the Northeast and Midwest.
The full product line is set to debut across the country in the spring. The broader launch will include additional appetizers, desserts, entrées, side dishes and seasonal vegetables as well as new spices, seasonings, rubs, baking mixes and pantry ingredients that are being developed now.
Marquee Brands Home Division President Carolyn D'Angelo said in a release that the diverse mix of ready-to-bake goods were "all developed with Martha’s signature taste and touch."
Martha Stewart is a veteran in the food space. The businesswoman and domestic diva has previously launched various product lines, including a meal kit as well as pasta sauces and olive oils. She also has a line of CBD products with Canopy Growth and recently joined the board of AppHarvest.
Although there is a lot of competition in the frozen and prepared foods space, Stewart’s star power will likely help boost brand recognition. Having a celebrity face on a CPG brand can draw fans as buyers and add a sense of credibility for some shoppers.
Now could be an especially good time to launch the brand since during the pandemic, interest in frozen and ready-to-eat meals has increased significantly.
— Lillianna Byington
Oreo candles turn up the heat on the beloved cookie
Oreo has introduced chocolate-covered versions, Double Stuf and limited-time flavors such as Jelly Donut and Waffles & Syrup of its popular cookie. Now, fans of the 108-year-old treat can fill their homes with the smell of Oreo.
Just in time for the busy holiday shopping season, the Oreo Cookie Scented Candle comes in a brown colored container loaded with a wax "creme filling." Each candle costs $12.99.
"If you've ever wanted to trick your guests into thinking they just stumbled onto a tour of the Oreo factory, our deliciously-scented Oreo candle is exactly what you need!" the company said on its website. "We suggest accompanying the scent with a few sleeves of Oreos for that full 360 experience."
Oreo, which was developed in 1912, is available in more than 100 countries around the globe. The brand sells approximately 34 billion cookies each year, the equivalent of 92 million cookies per day. Last year, the brand posted sales of $3.1 billion.
Owned by snacking giant Mondelez International, Oreo remains one of the most popular cookies in the U.S. But the company has not been shy about finding new ways to promote the brand and bring it into other areas of the store where the Oreo name might not otherwise have been found. Oreo has appeared in the frozen section with ice cream, churros and bars, as well as other parts of the sweets aisle with brownies, Jell-O pudding and cakes.
— Christopher Doering