These aren’t your mother’s Goldfish crackers.
The ubiquitous snack that smiles back was introduced in 1958 by Oscar J. Kambly, who invented it for his wife, a Pisces. The brand is now celebrating the Nineties with a limited-time taste makeover bowing on September 1.
“Nineties nostalgia is incredibly popular right now,” Janda Lukin, chief marketing officer of Campbell’s Snacks told me. “Our food trends research revealed that hot and spicy is the most requested flavor for Goldfish, particularly among young adults. Digging deeper, we discovered that the spicy, cheesy jalapeño popper was trademarked in 1992.”
“When deciding on our next flavor, we immediately thought of our favorite snack from the era, jalapeño poppers,” added Danielle Brown, vice president of marketing for Campbell Snacks. “In bringing this iconic flavor to life, nothing put a smile on our faces like creating the ultimate Nineties combo of a pair of jeans with a bag of Jalapeño Popper Goldfish peeking out of each pocket.”
The new flavor offers “a bold, cheesy taste with a slight kick of heat, and combines the premium quality crackers fans know and love with the nostalgic snack from the Nineties,” Campbell’s said.
Consumers can get the immersive Nineties Goldfish experience and wear their passion for the snack on their pants with a pair of JNCO jeans. Goldfish partnered with the jean company, which had its heyday in the Nineties. JNCO designed what the brand is calling the ultimate snacking accessory – limited-edition Goldfish Jalapeño Poppers JNCO Snack Pants.
The wide-leg style jean features oversize pockets that will fit a bag of Jalapeño Poppers Goldfish, and each pair conveniently comes with its own 6.6-ounce bag.
Food and fashion have a long history of collaboration. Most consumers are too young to remember Surrealist artist Salvador Dalí’s sartorial contribution, an A-line gown designed in 1937 by Elsa Schiaparelli with a lobster in the middle of the skirt.
More recently, Anti Social Social Club slapped its designs on T-shirts and hoodies for Panda Express, highlighting the mall-based purveyor of Chinese fast food’s popular orange chicken dish.
Iconic soft drink giant Coco-Cola in 2017 partnered with streetwear’s A Bathing Ape, infusing the latter’s cameo pattern with Coke’s trademark shade of red on limited edition Tees, button-down shirts, polo shirts and caps, as well as a G-Sock watchband.
Why all the fashion forays into tasty territory? For one thing, food and fashion fusions bring attention to both parties and can energize sleepy brands. They can also reel in new customers and supply additional revenue streams, albeit for the short term.
“This is our first fashion collaboration,” Lukin said. “We’ve had other collaborations in the past with Frank’s Red Hot sauce and Disney. There’s a natural connection between snacking and fashion. Both celebrate having fun and creating and enjoying new experiences.”
JNCO was a phenomenon in the Nineties when the brand hit the fashion scene hard. “JNCO wide leg jeans captured the imagination of a whole generation,” the brand says on its web site. “With a brilliant team of designers, illustrators, graffiti artists, and cartoonists, we were able to present extraordinary jeans with each pair expressing an individual identity through name, styling flasher, embroidery and graphics.
“The best proof of this legacy is our loyal followers, who through the years collected and traded these amazing jeans,” said JNCO cofounder Milo Revah. “My brother Jacques and I, and now with my daughter Camilla, are very proud and grateful for the longstanding appreciation and support. We’re now on the second leg of this incredible journey.”
In a new commercial for the snack, a teen is leaning against a playground fence when a couple approaches. “Jalapeno Poppers, those were huge in the Nineties,” says the woman excitedly. “As huge as Nineties pants,” says the man, noticing the boy’s jeans. “Oh, these pants? These aren’t Nineties pants, they’re Jalapeño Popper Goldfish pants. They’re nothing like Nineties pants.”
“So those big Nineties pockets?” the man in the commercial says. ‘’I’m pretty sure they’re Nineties pants.’’ “They’re Jalapeño Pocket Goldfish pants,” says the teen again. “Handful?” “Don’t mind if I do,” says the man, as he reaches his hand into a bag in the young man’s back pocket.
“Go for a handful of the Nineties,” is the tag line. Print ads feature copy such as, “Huge Nineties pockets finally explained.”
The limited-edition flavor will be available at major retailers where Goldfish is sold, for a suggested retail price of $2.69 per 6.6-ounce bag. The limited-edition Goldfish Jalapeño Popper JNCO jeans can be purchased from JNCO’s web site.
Asked what flavor and era Goldfish might tap next, Lukins said, “The verdict is still out, but we’re always looking for ways to surprise and delight our fans. As we develop flavors, we continue to be inspired by consumer feedback and trends.”