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The sauce’s rollout has been timed to coincide with Barbie’s 65th anniversary this year

Heinz has partnered with toy manufacturer Mattel to launch a Barbie-themed vegan BBQ mayonnaise.

Called Barbicue, the bright pink condiment (rsp: £3.99/415g) is a blend of Heinz’s Classic BBQ sauce and Seriously Good Mayo.

It was coloured with beetroot extract to “create the perfect shade of pink”, Heinz said.

A run of 5,000 bottles has launched via Heinz’s DTC website Heinz to Home. They will then land in Tesco stores on 17 April and on Ocado and in other retailers from May.

The launch came after a mock-up of the product was shared by the brand last summer when Greta Gerwig’s Barbie movie hit cinemas, explained Kraft Heinz’s president for northern Europe Jojo de Noronha.

“We asked our fans if we should make it a reality,” she said. “The answer was a resounding yes – that single post earned around 26 million organic impressions – and our teams then got to work perfecting the recipe.”

Its rollout was timed to coincide with Barbie’s 65th anniversary this year, de Noronha said, adding that Heinz had wanted “to make sure we gave Barbiecue the moment it deserves”.

“We’re heading into official BBQ season – we can’t think of a better moment to launch this limited-edition product with the fanfare it deserves,” she added.

In recent months, Heinz has worked with Paramount to launch a The Godfather pasta sauce and teamed up with Pernod Ricard to launch an Absolut Vodka pasta sauce.

While partners like Paramount and and Absolut appeared “to be an unlikely pairing for Heinz”, there was “method in the madness”, de Noronha claimed.

“By bringing together the iconicity of other brands, we’re able to tap into a whole new audience and lean into culturally relevant moments and insights, whether that’s film, food or even fashion,” she said. “UK consumers are seeking more excitement and fun from their food, and brand collaborations help us deliver this.”

And fans of Heinz could expect further tie-ups with big brands and franchises in the future, de Noronha added.

“Industry-leading partnerships are a crucial part of our long-term growth plans,” she said. “Our Heinz Absolut Vodka Pasta Sauce is a great example of this – it helped us closely connect with new and younger shoppers within the pasta sauce category, with 60% of incremental sales coming from new shoppers.”

Launches in fmcg were “a big focus area” for Barbie manufacturer Mattel, according to its head of consumer products for EMEA Ruth Henriquez.

“Besides Barbie we are also custodians of incredible brands including Hot Wheels, Monster High, Uno, and Masters of the Universe, amongst many others,” Henriquez said, adding these brands were “ready to be activated in the space”.

She added: “We are keen to continue doing these collections that mean every fan can take home a piece of their favourite brand.”