Pilgrims Choice picks WFCA for 2m account

Pilgrims Choice, the cheese brand owned by North Downs Dairy Company, has appointed WFCA to handle its £2m advertising account.

The Kent-based agency won the account following a three-way pitch against incumbent Lida, the below-the-line agency owned by M&C Saatchi, and an undisclosed agency. Lida had held the account since September 2003.

Pilgrims Choice is the second-biggest cheddar brand in the UK, behind Cathedral City, and is worth £53m (TNS). Its sub-brands include Mature, Extra Mature, Strong Farmhouse, Reserve Farmhouse, as well as Sliced, Grated and Snack Packs.

The market has traditionally been dominated by promotional marketing, but Pilgrims Choice intends to make a return to television advertising, as well as rolling out press campaigns. Its last TV work appeared in spring 2005 and was backed by press ads, door-drops and regional sampling.

Last December, it also ran a door-drop initiative through Link Direct, sending out more than 1 million leaflets in areas near Tesco, Asda, Somerfield, Morrisons, Waitrose and Sainsbury’s outlets.

The brand also has stands at consumer events such as the BBC Good Food Show and The Great Yorkshire Show, with samples and recipe leaflets handed out to visitors.

WFCA chief executive Michael Richards adds: “The brand wants to challenge the generic nature of the market.”

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