Daily Insights

Not Your Basic Batch

By: Mackenzie Baker | Sep 24, 2020

This October, Kraft will launch its own take on the pumpkin spice trend by adding it to a classic bowl of cheesy pasta. 

With fall in full swing, consumers can officially embrace the familiar traditions and new foods of the season, like the Pumpkin Spice Mac & Cheese from Kraft Dinner. The comfort food merges nutmeg and cinnamon with the classic cheese sauce to create a ready-to-make pasta meal. Each mac and cheese cup includes the dry pasta, a cheese and pumpkin spice packet, and a cinnamon topping to complete the dish. Kraft Dinner will release the fall food exclusively in Canada, where up to 1,000 consumers can enter to win a free cup. In addition to their Pumpkin Spice Mac & Cheese, winners will also receive a white mug with their name misspelled, supposedly as an homage to the classic name misspellings at Starbucks, home of the Pumpkin Spice Latte. With more eaters leaning towards comfort foods not only during the fall season, but due to the Coronavirus pandemic as well, the pumpkin-pasta hybrid could appeal to a large audience of homebound consumers, according to a Gartner report

To market its atypical concoction, Kraft Dinner launched out-of-home ads positioned near coffee shops around Canada. The food brand also took to Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter where its posts of classic fall-themed photos with the mac and cheese is accompanied by captions such as “it’s no basic batch” and the hashtag #PumpkinSpiceKD. By marketing the new product with comical captions and parody-esque photos, Kraft Dinner could appeal to younger audiences, particularly those that have shied away from divulging in “typical” fall foods in the past. As Pumpkin Spice Mac & Cheese will not be for sale in stores and is only available through the brand content, Kraft Dinner could build anticipation with fans online, which could help grow its audience and boost interactions. The limited-edition mac and cheese is the latest flavor combo on the market, following PepsiCo’s release of Cheetos Mac N’ Cheese, which features real chip flavoring. 

Like much of 2020, the arrival of Pumpkin Spice Mac & Cheese was unpredictable. However, Kraft Dinner’s newest food could provide a light-hearted distraction to consumers and an original way to ring in the fall season. The hype built around the new product could help Kraft Dinner boost consumer loyalty and potentially make the food an annual autumn tradition.