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Grape Jelly Strategy

March 13th, 2014 by

Ever since I can remember, jelly has been distributed in glass jars with metal screw caps.  Then Welch’s swooped in with a new strategy.

Jelly could be viewed as a mature product category, with little opportunity to differentiate between brands, other than price.

I remember seeing the first Welsh’s Squeezable Jelly container. At the time, my son was making his own PB&J sandwiches, which I would then cut into shapes for fun. It was a cool father son event, one that I always looked forward to. Except for one thing, the mess that we always created.

The challenge to disrupt the marketplace and sell more products likely began with a few simple observations by the Welch’s product design and marketing team. Kids, not parents, are making PB&J sandwiches. Glass containers can break easily, especially with kids in the drivers seat. Large twist off caps are hard to open, especially at first. Sticky knives on the counter top make a mess. And kitchen knives in the hands of a 4-year-old… not so smart.

The Welsh’s Squezable Jelly container was a smash hit, noted by an article I read years ago in a communication magazine. Welch’s revenue from new products average was twice that of the competition in the mid-2000 years when this product launched.

More than ever, we need to dig in to the wants and needs of our customers as the sources for innovation.


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