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Perrier launches watermelon, strawberry flavors

BY David Salazar

STAMFORD, Conn. — Perrier is expanding its portfolio. The sparkling mineral water brand has introduced two new flavors, strawberry and watermelon, which are both sugar-free with zero calories and zero sweeteners.

The new flavors join Perrier’s line of flavored sparkling mineral waters that includes lime, l’orange, pink grapefruit and green apple, as well as the original flavor.

“Consumers are making healthier choices when it comes to beverage consumption, and Perrier is thrilled to expand our range of guilt-free options,” VP and GM international brands Grant McKenzie said. “With zero calories and zero sweeteners, Perrier is proud to provide a full range of refreshingly delicious flavors that consumers can enjoy on-the-go any time of day.”

The new flavors are both available in 8.45-fl. oz. cans and 16.9-fl. oz. PET bottles and strawberry, original, lime and l’orange also are available in an 11.15-fl. oz. sleek can.

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Oreo introduces Firework cookies, kicks off #MyOreoCreation contest

BY David Salazar

EAST HANOVER, N.J. — Mondelez International’s Oreo brand has unveiled its latest limited-edition flavor and started a social media contest asking for fan’s flavor ideas. The #MyOreoCreation contest has begun with the launch of Firework Oreo, a limited-edition flavor from the Oreo Wonder Vault, that includes popping candy creme.

The contest is allowing fans to submit their ideas for the next Oreo Wonder Vault creation for the chance to win a cash reward valued at $500,000

“Our newest limited-edition flavor got us thinking — if we can create a Firework Oreo cookie, what else could we create?” Oreo brand manager Madeline Vincent said. “And who better to ask than those who are already sharing their flavor and creation ideas. We’ve always loved hearing and seeing our fans’ ideas and now we’re thrilled to merge that passion and creativity with Oreo innovation to come up with future Oreo Wonder Vault creations.”

Fans can share their ideas before July 14 with the hashtags #MyOreoCreation #Contest on Facebook Twitter or Instagram once per day to be entered for a chance to become one of three finalists who will win $25,000 each and see their ideas on select shelves nationwide in May 2018. The grand prize winner will be chosen through fan vote in July 2018 and will win $500,000 plus the opportunity to taste unreleased Oreo products, including those set to launch and in the prototype phase of development. Entries will be judged 40% on taste appeal, 30% on creativity and 30% on originality.

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General Mills names new CEO

BY David Salazar
MINNEAPOLIS — General Mills is looking to a longtime company executive to lead the company. Its board this week named Jeffrey Harmening CEO, effective June 1, and elected him to the board of directors. Harmening has been with General Mills for 23 years and has been president and COO since July 2016. 
 
“A key responsibility of a board is leading a thoughtful, robust succession planning process,” R. Kerry Clark, General Mills board lead director said. “The board unanimously cast its vote for Jeff as the best candidate to lead this venerable 150-year-old company. Jeff knows how to build talented teams and has extensive experience both in the U.S. and globally. He is not afraid to challenge the status quo and he is a tenacious and resilient leader.”
 
Harmening succeeds Ken Powell, who has been the company’s chairman and CEO since 2007. Powell will stay on board as chairman during the transition period until his retirement, which is expected within the next year. 
 
"Under Ken's leadership as CEO, the company made significant strides to expand globally, developed a culture of Holistic Margin Management, and redoubled its focus on meeting the ever-changing needs of consumers,” Clark said. “These achievements have resulted in outstanding value creation for General Mills shareholders, including 11 percent compound annual total shareholder returns."
 
Under Harmening’s leadership of General Mills’ U.S. leadership business, the company said it expanded its natural and organic segment positioning through acquisitions of such acquisitions as Annie’s and EPIC Provisions, making it the fourth-largest U.S. natural and organic food maker. Harmening also realigned the company’s cereal portfolio while president of its U.S. cereal business. 
 
"I am honored to take the helm of General Mills at such an important point in its history," Harmening said. "Building on the legacy of those that have led this great company before me is an exciting challenge and one I do not take on alone. General Mills' employees are singularly focused on driving growth and returns for the long term, and it will be a privilege to help them reach that goal." 
 
Harmening joined General Mills in 1994 and has served in such roles as SVP, CEO of Cereal Partners Worldwide, a joint venture with Nestlé based in Switzerland that markets cereal in 130 countries. He has been EVP, COO U.S. Retail, VP and SVP of the Big G cereal division and held various marketing roles at Betty Crocker, Yoplait, Foodservice and Big G new enterprises. 
 

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