The Limited

In Zone Brands, Austell, Ga., has taken a new approach with its line of BellyWashers. Now, the company is touting the collectibility of its products.

The first limited run of Marvin the Martian BellyWashers is making its way to shelves. The Marvins will be distributed in limited amounts before being discontinued, as has already been the fate of the Scooby-Doo solo and Scooby-Doo & Shaggy BellyWasher varieties.

Not to worry, In Zone Brands promises several new lines will be available in the coming year. First, characters from the Cartoon Network Originals series will have the honor of heading a BellyWasher. Personalities to be featured include Cow of “Cow and Chicken” fame, Dexter from “Dexter's Laboratory,” Courage the Cowardly Dog and Johnny Bravo (the latter two being stars of their own shows)


Aurora Foods, St. Louis, has taken a “do-it-yourself” approach to its latest marketing campaign for Duncan Hines. The series features a person wearing a unique Duncan Hines creation, showing consumers how easily they can make something creative.

The ads will be in print and outdoor displays, as well as in stores and on the Duncan Hines website. According the company, “The 'Create Your Own' campaign capitalizes on consumers' interests in baking as a way to express themselves, while giving them new reasons to bake with Duncan Hines products.”

The new advertising is intended to guide consumers to the wide selection of Duncan Hines products and to give consumers a means of expressing their individuality to their family and friends. In addition to the creations found in the advertisements, Duncan Hines' website offers hundreds of recipes and tips to inspire consumers.

From the Sublime . . .

H.J. Heinz Co., Pittsburgh, Pa., seems to launch a new flavor or color of a tried-and-true favorite every month, but the latest news from the company adds flavor and color to an established line.

Ore-Ida Funky Fries will debut in May in five flavors, all targeting children. Flavors include: Cinna-Stiks™—cinnamon and sugar potatoes; Cocoa Crispers™—described as “cocoa-y potatoes,” basically chocolate-covered fries; Kool Blue™—seasoned fries with a blue hue; Crunch Rings™—cylindrical potatoes; and Sour Cream & Jive™—potatoes seasoned with sour cream and chive flavoring.

The Real Games Begin

The 19th Winter Olympic Games have come and gone, so now is the time for the real games to begin—the efforts of companies to capitalize on the marketability of Olympic heroes.

Continuing a tradition of honoring top Olympians, Wheaties boxes (from General Mills, Minneapolis) will feature gold-medal-winning figure skater Sarah Hughes. Hughes, who made history by winning figure skating gold after finishing fourth in the short program, described the Wheaties honor as a “dream come true.” She joins Kristi Yamaguchi, Eric Heiden, the 1980 U.S. men's hockey team and the 1998 U.S. women's hockey team as Winter Olympians to grace a Wheaties package.

SoBe Beverages, Norwalk, Conn., will also honor a U.S. Olympic medalist with Bodacious Brew, named in tribute to skier and “SoBe Team Lizard member” Bode Miller, the first American ever to medal (garnering a silver) in the Olympic Combined event.