Rachel's Organic and Ribena are breaking into new categories with the launches of ice cream and smoothie lollies as licence owner R&R seeks to drive sales through super premium and healthier products.
The February launches come after last year's dire summer knocked 1.9% off the value of the overall ice cream category. The products are intended to introduce new consumers to the ice cream fixture and help boost the £120m company's sales by 10% after a flat 2007 performance.
Rachel's Organic ice cream will be R&R's most premium offer, taking on category giants Ben & Jerry's and Häagen-Dazs with indulgent fruit alternatives to their chocolate-based offers.
"The super premium end of the category is growing phenomenally," said R&R senior brand marketing manager Charlotte Hambling. "If people are going for a treat then they will treat themselves with the best. There are a lot of chocolate and biscuit-based options out there, but no-one is doing fruit or organic in a premium way."
The ice cream will come in two variants, Ravishingly Raspberry and Decadently Double Cherry, with an rsp of £4.29 for a 500ml tub. The product, which is targeted at affluent females, has secured listings in Tesco and Waitrose.
The Ribena Smoothie lolly, priced £1.99 for a pack of three, will play heavily on its health credentials. Packaging will flag up that it contains 70 calories per stick, is virtually fat free, contains vitamin C and is made from a superfruit.
"This launch will attract a wider audience to the fast-growing smoothie market through the recognition that comes with Ribena," said Hambling.
The lolly will benefit from a £7m umbrella brand spend from Ribena. Both brands will also be supported through R&R's total £2m advertising spend for 2008 as well as price promotions to drive trial.
R&R, formerly Richmond Ice Cream, is also to introduce a a Thorntons ice cream range this year.