Busting on snobby-gourmet branded competitor Haagen-Dazs is more than a tradition for hippy-gourmet branded Ben & Jerry’s.
It’s part of Ben & Jerry’s heritage.
In fact, Ben & Jerry’s might still be muddling along as a regional brand if reps from Haagen-Dazs (owned by Pillsbury at the time) hadn’t tried to force retailers to drop the little-known brand.
Ben & Jerry’s fought back with a grassroots PR Campaign (What’s the Doughboy Afraid Of?) that thrust the little ice cream brand into the national spotlight… and soon national distribution.
Then who can forget the Ben & Jerry’s ad that poked fun at the phoniness of their competitors’ contrived names (Haagen-Dazs was just concocted to sound Scandinavian)
There ain’t no Häagen, there ain’t no Dazs,
There ain’t no Frusen, there ain’t no Glädj
There ain’t nobody named Steve at Steve’s,
But there’s two real guys at Ben & Jerry’s.
Back in January, 2009, Haagen-Dazs announced that it was downsizing its package size:
To offset increasing costs, we did not consider reducing the quality of our ingredients or the care we take in making your ice cream, sorbet, and frozen yogurt. We opted instead to slightly reduce some of our carton sizes.
Beginning late January 2009, all Häagen-Dazs branded 16 fl. oz. cartons will change to 14 fl. oz. In March 2009, all Häagen-Dazs branded 32 fl. oz. cartons will change to 28 fl. oz.
This was a difficult decision. But we hope you’ll agree that our promise to never sacrifice the quality of our ice cream—what we put in as well as what we leave out—is what the Häagen-Dazs brand is all about.
I just received a Ben & Jerry’s “Chunkmail” email newsletter with the subject line: “A pint is still a pint!” that featured the graphic above along with this message:
One of our competitors (think funny sounding European name) recently announced they will be downsizing their pints from 16 to 14 ounces to cover increased ingredient & manufacturing costs and help improve their bottom line. At Ben & Jerry’s we think downsizing pints is downright wrong. We understand that in today’s hard economic times businesses are feeling the pinch. We also understand that many of you are also feeling the same, & think now more than ever you deserve your full pint of ice cream.
We are even more committed today to lead with our values through the quality of our ingredients & how we source them to make the best ice cream possible. So, while our competitor may be experiencing a bit of shrinkage, rest assured that your Ben & Jerry’s will still be standing tall in the freezer. Enjoy!
Good to see Ben & Jerry’s stand by its heritage. Just because there ain’t no Ben at Ben & Jerry’s… just because Jerry’s now a figurehead and the hippy ownership is actually the multinational conglomerate Unilever… is no reason to end a fine tradition.
It just goes to show you, if you use cool cows in your ads, you can get away with anything.
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Graphics: Ben & Jerry’s