Leftovers: Dolly Parton adds dazzle to Jeni’s; Campbell supersizes Goldfish crackers

Leftovers is our look at a few of the product ideas popping up everywhere. Some are intriguing, some sound amazing and some are the kinds of ideas we would never dream of. We can’t write about everything that we get pitched, so here are some leftovers pulled from our inboxes.

Dolly Parton’s star power brings dazzle and music to Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream

Two legends are teaming up for a collaboration to sweeten the tastebuds, ears and mystery lover’s mind.

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams is relaunching its blockbuster Strawberry Pretzel Pie flavor, custom made for the Queen of Country herself, Dolly Parton. The flavor, which features layers of salty pretzel streusel, cream cheese ice cream and strawberry sauce, was first released by the pint on Jeni’s website last April, and it sold out in minutes. The order website was set to go live at 10 a.m. ET this Friday.

But there’s more than just the bright pink pints of the mega-popular frozen treat for Parton’s fans. The prolific entertainer is working on both a new album and a fiction novel — co-authored with bestselling thriller writer James Patterson. Both are called “Run, Rose, Run,” with the songs on the album inspired by the book about a fledgling country star trying to stay away from darkness in Nashville. A special extended edition of the “Run, Rose, Run” album is available for pre-order only at the Jeni’s website. It includes an exclusive bonus track, called “Rose of my Heart.”

Parton has been a superstar in the worlds of music, acting and philanthropy for more than a half century. Throughout her career, she’s had 26 No. 1 songs on the country music charts, 44 top 10 country albums and 110 singles that have appeared on the music charts. Parton starred in the iconic ‘80s working girl movie “9 to 5,” which she turned into a Broadway musical. And she’s well known for her social causes, including Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, which sends free books to children five and younger — and which will receive the proceeds from sales of Strawberry Pretzel Pie ice cream. More recently, Parton’s been recognized for helping fund the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

Jeni’s is one of the more sought-after premium ice cream brands and has partnered with famous people including rapper and fashion designer Tyler, the Creator and well-known Jeni’s fan President Joe Biden. But the Parton-inspired Strawberry Pretzel Pie, which was released on two separate occasions last year, attracted fans like no other flavor the Ohio-based ice cream company has created.

While it’s likely that there will be a similar crush of people waiting to get their spoons into the newest release of the Parton-inspired ice cream — and their earbuds playing her new tunes — the old adage holds true: Good things come to those who wait. Even though they go on sale now, the ice cream pints will ship in April and the digital version of Parton’s album can be downloaded in March. The timing gives another meaning to Parton’s iconic hit “9 to 5”: The music is available in nine weeks, then the ice cream will come in another five.

— Megan Poinski


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Permission granted by Campbell Soup


One fish. Two fish. Mega Goldfish.

Goldfish crackers have grown into a giant snacking brand for Campbell Soup. Now the CPG giant is adding a new fish to its ever-growing school of more than 20 different varieties.

Goldfish is introducing Mega Bites, a variety that is 50% larger than the regular cracker. Created with adult consumers in mind, the fish-shaped crackers are available in two flavors: Sharp Cheddar and Cheddar Jalapeño.

“This is the first time Goldfish has created a snacking experience specifically with ‘Grown Up’ tastes in mind,” Janda Lukin, chief marketing officer of Campbell Snacks, said in a statement. “We’re at the start of a new chapter for the brand and are expanding our offerings and appeal to all age groups — in the college dorm, snacking at your desk, wherever that is these days — while remaining a snack for all families.”

While Goldfish remains a household staple in school lunchboxes or on family roadtrips, Campbell Soup said the cheesy cracker is being embraced more often by adults. In recent years, Goldfish consumption has shifted, with adults consuming 40% of all Goldfish sold, the company said. Cheddar and Flavor Blasted Xtra Cheddar were the two most popular flavors in 2021.

Goldfish were first introduced to the United States in 1962. The snack was originally created to be served with cocktails, but it eventually started appearing at bars, bowling alleys, dinner parties and other gatherings. French chef Julia Child liked Goldfish crackers so much that she reportedly served them with her famous martinis on Thanksgiving.

In Campbell Soup’s most recent quarter, CEO Mark Clouse said Goldfish gained market share and growing consumption in the high single digits due to strong multi-pack sales, successful limited edition flavor innovations and increased household penetration.

“We are winning with consumers, gaining share and driving significant consumption increases,” Clouse said. “We also continue to increase the relevance of this brand and broaden its appeal beyond our traditional kids audience.”  

— Christopher Doering


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Courtesy of Bolthouse Farms


Bolthouse Farms embraces elderberries for immune-boosting drinks

As the pandemic enters its third year and keeping well remains at the top of mind for many consumers, Bolthouse Farms has debuted additions to its Immunity Suite of juices, smoothies and shots. The Green Immunity Boost smoothie is made with pineapple, cucumber and kale. The Superfood Immunity Boost juice blend adds elderberries, zinc, and echinacea, popular in herbal remedies, to the mix. Both new drinks also boast vitamins C, D and E.

The line also includes two immunity-focused additions to Bolthouse’s Bolts shots line. A citrusy-flavored variety made with orange and acerola cherries features 500% of the daily value of vitamin C, while an elderberry variety containing ginger juice offers 100% of the daily value of zinc, according to the company.

The sweet yet tart elderberry, touted for its antioxidants and immune-boosting qualities, has become a popular fixture in the wellness space since the pandemic began, appearing in everything from seltzer to frozen fruit bars

Bolthouse’s director of marketing, Amy Shoemaker, said the new products are targeted at consumers looking for an “easy and uncomplicated” healthy drink to add to their daily routine.

“The past few years have proven the importance of small, daily tasks to help promote and maintain a healthy immune system,” said Shoemaker.

For Bolthouse, developing products based on consumer trends such as immunity, the keto diet and even CBD has been part of its mission for years — and momentum has only grown since the company was sold by Campbell Soup in 2019.

— Chris Casey

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