McCain in major extension with desserts

McCain Foods, the frozen food brand, is planning a major extension of its portfolio with the launch of its first range of frozen desserts. The move is a major departure for the brand, which is traditionally known for its chips and savoury products.

The dessert range includes muffins and doughnuts with a chocolate dipping sauce, and aims to offer a quick and simple dessert or sharing snack for families. McCain is also strengthening its position in the snacking category with a range of frozen filled baguettes. The range is available with sausage and onion, tuna melt and chicken tikka fillings. Both the desserts and the baguettes are cooked from frozen in the microwave.

McCain is understood to be planning a heavyweight television campaign to support the launches and to drive sales of its overall Micro snacks range. It spends &£15m on advertising every year, through TBWA/London.

Industry insiders say that McCain believes there is huge potential in the microwaveable snacks category and that the frozen market is ripe to develop into snacking, but adds that it has so far failed to capture the imagination of mums. She points to the failure of Heinz Bite Me, a range of pizza snacks aimed at teenagers, as an example of where it has not worked (MW January 29).

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