February 22, 2012 / 9:12 PM / 6 years ago

Campbell reaches into pouch to heat up soup sales

BOCA RATON, Fla., Feb 22 (Reuters) - Campbell Soup Co introduced a range of new products including soups with exotic flavors sold in pouches on Wednesday, as its new CEO aims to deliver on her mandate to turn around the company’s ailing North American soup business.

After years of weak soup sales, Denise Morrison, who took the top job at Campbell last summer, has pledged to stabilize and then grow its North American soup business by introducing new products and reinvigorating its marketing and advertising.

The company on Wednesday introduced a new line called “Campbell’s Go!” with soups sold in pouches in flavors like coconut curry and Moroccan chicken. Campbell plans to extend that line to other simple meals that are meant to appeal to younger shoppers with graphics that are edgier than Campbell’s traditional products.

The company also introduced a line of “skillet sauces” that consumers can use to cook meat with.

“We’ll unfold more of this as the year goes on, but obviously we’re going to bring news to the base can business,” as well, Morrison said in an interview following her presentation at the annual Consumer Analyst Group of New York conference in Boca Raton.

JP Morgan analyst Ken Goldman said he was impressed by the breadth of the new offerings, but said only time will tell how successful they are for Campbell‘s.

“Even if all of these products work, will their benefits be enough to offset steep declines in canned soup sales?” Goldman said in a research note. “This is a tall order given canned soup’s recent struggles.”

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