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P&G unveils ‘Plush Potties for the People’ tour

BY Michael Johnsen

LOS ANGELES Procter & Gamble recently unveiled its “Plush Potties for the People” tour in Santa Monica, Calif., a tongue-in-cheek media campaign featuring comedian Chelsea Handler to help support the need for cleaner and more accessible public bathrooms in the United States, and, of course, to use Charmin in those restrooms.

As part of the promotion, P&G is rolling out Charmin’s “Plush Potties”—free, family-friendly, and ADA stalls that include state-of-the-art toilets, faucets, sinks and sconces provided by KOHLER, a stainless steel baby changing station, fireplace, vanities and flat screen televisions. “To make sure the potties stay pristine, attendants dressed in Charmin clad tuxedos will clean the restrooms after every use,” P&G said.

“I’m excited to be putting my name behind this program, and helping Charmin with such a public need” said Handler, who is host of the hit show Chelsea Lately on E!. “As a frequent traveler, I’ve seen some nasty public restrooms, and it’s a horrible feeling to come out feeling dirtier than when you went in. With the ‘Plush Potties’ national tour, Charmin is finally offering the opportunity to go in style.”

“Charmin wants to bring the same premium experience it creates for consumers at home to those who are on the run and need a clean and accessible public bathroom,” added Jacques Hagopian, brand manager for Charmin. “The Plush Potties offer a comfortable and luxurious alternative compared to the standard public restroom.”

The “Plush Potties” tour starts in Los Angeles and will travel to Chicago Nov. 6 and Boston Nov. 10, leading up to the grand re-opening of Charmin Restrooms in New York’s Time Square this holiday season.

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Shamrock Farms launches new product line nationally

BY Melissa Valliant

PHOENIX Arizona-based dairy brand Shamrock Farms is releasing a new single-serve “mmmmilk” line throughout select national markets in October. The company’s popularity has been on the rise recently due to its role as the official milk of SUBWAY restaurants, and its various flavored lines have been increasingly appearing in vending machines all over the country.

Shamrock Farms currently produces portable, 12-ounce containers of whole white, whole chocolate and 2 percent reduced fat white, chocolate, strawberry and vanilla. On-the-go Shamrock Farms milk will be available through Kroger and Marsh in Charleston, W.V.; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; and Roanoke and Richmond, Va.

“We have a strong brand with on-the-go functionality, compelling graphics, and even a sassy spokescow, Roxie,”” said Sandy Kelly, direcot rof marketing for Shamrock Farms Dairy Division. “This product delivers fun flavors and the great taste kids love without compromising the nutrition parents demand. Our single serve milk line has proven to be a real stand-out in the dairy case.”

The company plans on utilizing print, radio and in-store POS advertising to gain national interest in the new line, sampling the product at high-traffic locations and promoting it through sponsored sporting events.

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Diamond Foods acquires Pop Secret, makes plans for marketing

BY Melissa Valliant

SAN FRANCISCO Diamond Foods, marketer of Emerald brand snack nuts, is popping into the microwavable popcorn segment with its recent $190 million acquisition of Pop Secret, currently the No.2 microwavable popcorn brand.

Emerald brand snack nuts transformed the snack nut category in 2004 with resealable lids, different packaging, new flavors and heavy ad spending. Diamond Foods has the opportunity to do the same with Pop Secret. Diamond Foods chief executive Michael Mendes plans on catering the new advertising campaign to younger consumers through different flavors and packaging, and, according to Investor’s Business Daily, a series of national TV ads will be aired soon. The company intends to spend between $26 million and $29 million on advertising this year and expects to gain $85 million to $90 million in annual sales with the addition of Pop Secret.

“The microwave popcorn market has been pretty stagnant over the past few years, with little money spent on marketing,” analyst Mark Argento of Craig-Hallum Capital Group said. “There’s a big opportunity to re-grow the category with some marketing dollars and product improvement.”

Diamond Foods’ microwavable popcorn possesses high selling potential because of its location in the snack aisle, often adjacent to the snack nuts, and because retail buyers often have control over the purchasing of both snack nuts and popcorn. Both products also have a long shelf life and do not require refrigeration.

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