Disney characters are adding a little magic to grocery store shelves under a new deal to launch a line of branded products at Kroger stores.
Disney Consumer Products said yesterday it signed a deal with The Kroger Co. to launch branded food, health and beauty products featuring Disney and Disney/Pixar characters. Disney Magic Selections are rolling out in more than 2,400 Kroger stores, including Ralphs, Fry’s, Fred Meyer, King Soopers and Dillons. Plans call for 100 products in the 2006 rollout and more than 200 SKUs in 2007. Characters including, The Incredibles, Winnie the Pooh, Cars, Mickey Mouse and Monsters, Inc. will be featured on the Disney-branded products.
The initial launch includes fruit, breakfast food, cheese and yogurts. Additional food categories will feature character-shaped frozen and canned pasta, fresh and frozen meals, cut vegetables with dip, healthy snacks (granola bars, fruit cups and apple sauce), macaroni and cheese and peanut butter and jelly. Baby and toddler products featuring Bambi, Thumper, Dumbo and Bear in the Big Blue House, personal care and floral items will arrive in stores in 2007.
The partnership is the first time Disney Consumer Products has licensed food products with a retailer. In May 2005, Disney Consumer Products inked a deal with Kroger’s to launch Old Yeller dog food.
“This program with Kroger is especially exciting because it combines the leading grocer in the country with the world’s most popular family entertainment brand to bring an affordable product line to market that kids will enjoy and parents will trust,” said Harry Dolman, executive VP of Disney Consumer Products for food, health and beauty in a statement. “Disney magic Selections products are healthy, entertaining choices for the breakfast counter, the lunch box the dinner table, bath time and beyond.”
The healthy food line will be branded with a Mickey Mouse “thumbs up” logo and “0 grams trans fat,” “made with whole grains” and “no preservatives” messaging. The back panels of packages will feature trivia, games and educational messages about healthy lifestyle messages.
“This is a fun, convenient way for customers to bring the magic of Disney to the child’s plate,” said Nick Hahn, director of corporate brands for Kroger, in a statement.
Disney is not the first entertainment property to tie licensing to food products. Nickelodeon is using images of its stars, including Dora the Explorer and SpongeBob SquarePants, on packages of apples, pears, cherries and edamame (PROMO Xtra, July 20, 2006). The move is part of the company’s push to promote its message of healthy, balanced lifestyles for kids. Likewise, Sesame Workshop inked a new deal last month with Del Monte Foods to launch a new line of Del Monte canned vegetables with Grover, Elmo and Cookie Monster (PROMO Xtra, June 22, 2006).