Weight Watchers is continuing its battle against Atkins with a new range of chilled pizzas.
Hazlewood Pizza, part of the Greencore convenience foods group, has won the licence to produce a three-strong range.
And it plans to use the deal to recruit new users to the Weight Watchers banner and the programme’s ‘Time to Eat’ scheme for time-strapped dieters.
The range is initially being shipped out to chillers in Asda and will be rolled out to other major retailers next month.
Rsp for each of the nine-inch offerings - available in Fajita Chicken, Mediterranean Style Vegetables and Garlic Mushroom variants - will be £2.49, although they are initially
being sold in Asda at an introductory rate of £1.99.
A range of frozen Weight Watchers pizzas are already available from Heinz.
Simon Staddon, commercial director of Hazlewood Pizza, said: “Weight Watchers has always known that the best way to control weight is to eat normal foods.”
However, the launch comes at a challenging time for Weight Watchers, which finally appears to be giving into the severe pressure it has faced from the popularity of carbohydrate-busting diets such as Atkins and South Beach.
As first revealed in The Grocer (June 5, page 68), Heinz is launching a four-strong range of low-carb Weight Watchers meals next month. And the US arm of the dieting programme this week announced plans to combat waning interest by introducing a new ‘Core Plan’ programme that will allow dieters to eat as much as they want of certain low-energy density foods such as whole wheat pasta and skinless chicken.
However, the organisation said there were currently no plans to bring the new diet to the UK.
Florette is hitting the nation’s airwaves with a new commercial, part of a £3m investment behind the bagged salad brand. Breaking this week, the ad is scheduled to run throughout September and features two groups of farmers and growers confronting each other as they sing passionately about the respective salad leaf they are growing. As they wave the leaves in each other’s faces a playful voice delivers the ‘Florette, Raw Passion… in a bag!’ catchline.
Simon Mowbray