- Kraft Heinz has launched promotional efforts in support of five Heinz brand barbecue sauces the company launched earlier this year, including four regional flavors.
- The Kraft brand already sells eight barbecue sauces online, with various flavors available at different retailers. However, Kraft Heinz positions the two brands as "differentiated" lines, "reaching a slightly different segment of the market," Jessica Ryan, director of brand building for Heinz condiments and sauces, told Ad Age.
- Last year, Heinz pushed grocery sales for its yellow mustard, which was previously only available at ballparks, restaurants, and certain bulk retailers. The new barbecue sauces are a continuation of the brand's condiment expansion.
Instead of taking sales or buyers from Kraft, Heinz's barbecue sauces, particularly the regional varieties, may pose a challenge to other premium regional barbecue sauce brands.
As a major manufacturer, Kraft Heinz wouldn't have the local producer appeal of its competitors. But the company is striving for a similar authenticity by positioning its varieties with familiar regional flavors associated with the barbecue sauce category, such as Memphis and Kansas City. These flavor varieties position Heinz's barbecue sauces against premium regional brands rather than Kraft — and may do so at a lower price point to better compete.
Kraft Heinz is demonstrating the flexibility of Heinz as not just a ketchup brand but a condiments brand in general. This type of positioning ensures growth and future expansion to prevent brand sales from stagnating.
"When you're positioning a brand, you're really looking for that platform that has big legs and can grow across potentially multiple categories," Kathleen Carroll, founder and CEO of The Branding Clinic, told Food Dive earlier this month.