PepsiCo is hoping to ensure porridge remains the hottest thing in the cereal aisle by launching a major NPD and marketing push for its Quaker brand.

Last month’s Top Products Survey (17 December 2011) revealed Quaker Oat So Simple was the strongest performer of the top 20 cereal brands, rising 19% in value year-on-year to £76.7m. Its instant porridge pots played a big role in its success, and next month PepsiCo will expand the range with two pots featuring an oat cluster topping.

Oat So Simple Toppers - available in two variants, Chocolate Chunks and Strawberry Pieces - has a topping that is packed separately in the lid and is added to the porridge once it has been made. They have an rsp of £1.29 - making them 30p more than standard Oat So Simple pots.

“The creation of the Pots range transformed the breakfast category by tapping into the growing on-the-go occasion,” said group marketing director Patrick Kalotis. “Two-thirds of Quaker Oat So Simple Pots shoppers have been incremental to the category and the addition of the Toppers variants is set to drive sales even further.”

Toppers and the Oats So Simple children’s range PepsiCo launched in May will be the focus of a new TV ad push that breaks this month and will run for eight weeks.

The ad carries the message that Quaker oats are a nourishing way to start the day, providing energy, fibre and lowering cholesterol. It has the tag line ‘Super people eat super grains’.