PHILADELPHIA (CBS/CNN) — Kellogg has seen your Cheez-It and wine tweets and has come up with a product to make the pairing more convenient (and to sell more Cheez-Its). House Wine and Kellog are partnering to sell a wine-and-Cheez-It box — that’s a box of red wine and box of Cheez-Its, not Cheez-it flavored wine — for a limited time. Kellogg’s plan: Get people excited about the 98-year-old Cheez-It brand.
Products that are sold for a limited time help build buzz and excitement around a brand. In this case it’s also a way for Kellogg to cash in on a combination people are making themselves, Jeff Delonis, Cheez-It’s marketing director told CNN Business.
“Fans on social media … have already been participating in pairing wine with Cheez-It flavors for years,” he said. “So we’re excited to deliver on that specific consumer trend.”
People can find the mash-up product for $25 on the House Wine website starting at 5 p.m. ET on July 25. It will only be available for a limited time.
Wine and Cheez-Its may sound like a gag, but it does seem to be a combination some people are chasing. GrubStreet published an article last summer titled “How to Pair Wine With Cheez-Its.” On social media, people joke about having wine and Cheez-Its for dinner and snap photos of a bowl of the snack next to a glass of wine. The Reddit thread, “What to pair with Cheez-It’s? (yes, serious)” has a number of earnest responses.
Snacks “serve as strong growth engines” for Kellogg, Delonis said. Kellogg has been using new products and partnerships to promote growth within the Cheez-It brand. Last year, Kellogg announced that Cheez-It would become a multi-year sponsor of the college basketball Cactus Bowl (now called the Cheez-It Bowl). Kellogg also launched a new thin variation of the classic Cheez-It cracker, called Snap’d, last year.
The efforts have helped revitalize the brand, the company said during a presentation earlier this year. Cheez-It sales grew over 12% in the United States in the first quarter, according to the company.
And with the new combination product, Kellogg may be able to take advantage of House Wine’s success.
Sales of the 15-year-old company’s three-liter box of wine have grown by 5% over the past month, said Hal Landvoigt, House Wine’s director of winemaking, citing Nielsen data. Over the past 13 weeks, sales have popped 3%.
In addition to the red wine and classic Cheez-it flavor product, House Wine and Kellogg are recommending pairings of some of their other items, like Malbec and Zesty Cheddar Ranch, Rosé and White Cheddar, Sauvignon Blanc with Extra Toasty Cheez-Its and more.
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