McCormick to expand Frank's RedHot brand

by Monica Watrous
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McCormick is expanding its recently acquired Frank's RedHot sauce brand into new product categories.
BOCA RATON, Fla. — McCormick & Co., Inc. is expanding its recently acquired Frank’s RedHot sauce brand into new product categories, said Lawrence E. Kurzius, president and CEO. New products will include refrigerated dips, seasoning blends, recipe mixes and more.

Lawrence Kurzius, president and CEO of McCormick

“We’re increasing the fuel to further drive this very strong brand,” Kurzius said during a Feb. 20 presentation at the Consumer Analyst Group of New York conference in Boca Raton. “Despite being No. 1 in hot sauce, there remains significant upside for Frank’s in awareness, trial and household penetration.”

Sparks, Maryland-based McCormick & Co. added Frank’s RedHot and French’s mustard brands with the $4.2 billion acquisition of the food business of Reckitt Benckiser Group last August. The addition of these brands expanded the company’s penetration by 4 million households, bringing total McCormick household penetration to 87 percent, and increased the company’s customer base in branded food service by more than 30 percent, Kurzius said.

To drive further awareness of Frank’s RedHot, the company plans to launch the brand’s first television ad in seven years.

“We’ll significantly strengthen working media and regional programs behind a proven, irreverent campaign to build awareness and trial,” Kurzius said. “You may have heard it: ‘I put that you-know-what on everything.’ Frank’s also under-indexes on share of shelf, leaving many key SKUs and variants underrepresented in category assortment. Through McCormick’s category management, we’re already increasing distribution points.”

In the coming months, McCormick is launching Frank’s RedHot refrigerated dips in buffalo chicken and jalapeño popper varieties; seasoning blends in buffalo ranch and original varieties; recipe mixes including ranch dip and queso; and new sauce flavors such as honey garlic and chili lime.

“We’re making it easier than ever to enjoy Frank’s RedHot,” Kurzius said.

McCormick also plans to give the French’s brand a boost with increased working media, improved distribution and share of shelf, and a new consumer campaign that reinforces the product's simple ingredient statement.

“In 2018, we’re launching honey mustard dipping sauce and stone ground Dijon mustard,” Kurzius said. “Premium and specialty mustards are growing segments, and French’s will drive increased innovation in these areas. And from a health and wellness perspective, mustard is an ideal condiment and ingredient. It contains no sugar or fat and has zero calories. French’s is made with real turmeric. We’ll go beyond the bun and reframe mustard as better for you with McCormick’s proven ability to drive flavor and recipe trends with consumers.”

McCormick also sees strong potential for Frank’s and French’s in international markets, Kurzius said.

“We’ll provide sales coverage and expand distribution on key SKUs where we already have a presence and build out new distribution in markets like China, Asia Pacific and Central and South America,” he said. “Food service is a key lever in building trial and awareness in international markets, and we’ll be driving increased presence through our tabletop and limited-time offers.

“Globally, hot sauce is an attractive category with strong growth, and one of our priorities will be to drive Frank’s RedHot into a No. 1 global brand.”

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