Del Monte’s revamped Fruitini line will hit UK retailers’ shelves later this summer. However, the desire to avoid a consumer backlash against the supposed healthiness of dual-positioned products may have made the marketing too geared towards winning the parent’s endorsement rather than the child’s.

Del Monte is relaunching its Fruitini brand as a convenient, fun and healthy fruit snack targeting the children’s lunchbox market. The product will use a dual marketing strategy to target mothers and their 4 to 9-year-old children. Del Monte must be hoping that the product can follow in the successful footsteps of Lunchables and Cheesestrings in capturing the lucrative lunchbox market.

Del Monte’s dual marketing strategy will hinge on the convenience and health messages gaining parental endorsement and the fun factor appealing to the kids. With endorsement from both parent and child, a product is in a win-win situation and avoids the need to engender children’s pester power.

Products that try to capture the children’s market with ‘healthy’ promises walk a thin fence between credibility with the parent and ensuring demand from the child. For example, Sunny Delight captured children’s desire but fell foul of parents’ and health bodies’ concerns and is now undergoing extensive pre-relaunch surgery.

Fruitini will appeal to children through more vibrant and colorful packaging that provides more fun visual associations, while the harder to open ring pull has been replaced with an easier to use foil top opening.

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However, the parent appears to be more heavily targeted. No artificial-looking colours have been used in the product itself – enhancing the natural and healthy image of the food. The product is healthy with real fruit pieces and no added sugar. Parents can also be assured that the packaging will be easy to open.

However, the product lacks any strong interactive element, or ‘play’ factor, unlike key rivals in the lunchbox market such as Cheesestrings, Frubes or Lunchables. And the visual flair of the packaging may not be enough for kids to want to eat the fruit snack. By wanting to avoid a health-driven backlash, Del Monte has biased the focus of its dual marketing strategy to the parent.

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