Burton's Maryland cookies biscuits marketing new product

Burton’s Biscuit Co is claiming a first for a mainstream biscuit brand with the launch of soft cookies under the Maryland banner.

The Maryland Soft Baked cookies, which roll out later this month, would become bigger than the £7.5m soft-centred Gooeys launched by Burton’s in 2013, claimed the supplier.

Backed by a £2m marketing spend including promotional activity, and national TV ads from late spring, the US-style cookies will be available in two variants, Caramel & Choc Chunk and Double Choc Chunk. Each gingham-style pack, designed to suggest nostalgia and home baking, contains eight 25g cookies (rsp: £1.99).

Burton’s had made “a substantial investment” in manufacturing technology to facilitate the launch, said customer category management head David Costello.

“This is the sort of genuine product innovation that will really excite consumers,” he said, adding that research by Buzzback had shown 65% of consumers were likely to buy the product.

“Feedback from retail buyers has been excellent,” he said. “Soft cookies are already popular in in-store bakeries but this is the first time a mainstream brand has offered this sort of product.”

Burton’s will be looking to turn around sales of the Maryland brand with the launch following a 6.9% year-on-year dip to £48m [Nielsen 52 w/e 11 October 2014].

Costello said the decline was primarily a result of less innovation in 2014 than the previous year, when Burton’s launched the Maryland Gooeys brand.