Heinz is about to stir up the soup category by introducing three new ranges, one of which will mark the brand's first major push into the chilled soup arena. Twenty seven new soups arrive in stores this month under the Farmers' Market, Taste of Home and Soups of the World banners. They will be backed by a £3.5m marketing campaign and are aimed at consumers who want wholesome, hearty and premium food. Under the Farmers' Market banner, Heinz is launching six chilled soup options, as well as ambient variants. It has trialled chilled soup before, in a 20-week run with Tesco three years ago, but decided against a major move into the sector at that point. The chilled soups, in flavours such as lentil & smoked bacon and hearty minestrone, will be priced at £1.49 to £1.69 per carton. "Penetration in chilled soup is slow even though the market is growing," said Heinz marketing manager, Matthew Cullom. "We wanted to make it more accessible for more people by offering favourite and earthy recipes from a trusted brand." The four ambient Farmers' Market options include a three bean & smoked bacon and a woodland mushroom variety, while Soups of the World is inspired by popular dishes from Italy, Morocco and Mexico. Heinz has put both ranges in larger 515g cans to try and stretch soup's appeal beyond lunch and into evening meals. However, it has opted for single serve microwaveable pots for The Taste of Home range, which comes in variants such as beef stew & dumplings and Lancashire hotpot and aims to bridge the gap between traditional soup and a more substantial meal. "Soup fits perfectly with changing consumer needs and there's scope to introduce some big, innovative new ranges to develop the total market and raise the bar for driving growth," said Cullom. "It has also become clear that the key to unlocking growth across the total market is to introduce a premium range across both wet ambient and chilled."