US consumers are less aware than ever before of new product launches, a new study conducted by Schneider Associates, Mintel International and IRI has found.

According to the Most Memorable New Product Launch Survey, companies are finding it increasingly difficult to engage with consumers when launching new products.
When asked about new products from 2008, 69% of survey respondents could not remember a single new product launched during the year.

"2008 was a year of distractions, with the average American's attention pulled in many different directions simultaneously," Lynn Dornblaser, Director of Trend Insight at Mintel, explained.

With consumers cutting spending they are becoming less aware of product launches, Char Partelow, SVP of the panel consulting group at IRI added.

"Because many people can only afford the basics, they're sticking to what they know, products and services that bring them comfort. We found that 'a trusted brand name' ranked as the number one quality respondents looked for when buying new products. Many Americans are simply less interested in 'risking it' on a new product," Partelow said.

The processed food companies whose launches were found to be "most memorable" were Kraft Mac & Cheese crackers and Yoplait Fiber One.