Krispy Kreme finds “depression era” price for coffee doesn’t pay

Last fall Krispy Kreme tried to grab some market share in the Northwest by rolling back coffee prices to “Depression era” levels. The “New Deal” marketing effort cut prices from for a small from $1.45 to a nickel, mediums went from $1.65 to a dime and larges from $1.75 to 15 cents. It was A) a nice thing to do in this economy and B) KK figured that it made fiscal sense for them because they make most of their money from donuts not java.

11515Drink-Coffee-Poster At first things went well, very well. In March sales of Lutheran gasoline (mocha) were up 229 percent over pre-price cut. Melissa Allison, who covers coffee for the Seattle Times (that’s gotta be like having the philosophy beat in ancient Athens), says cheap joe may not be enough. Turns out people weren’t buying the baked goods needed.

Today Gerard Centioli, CEO of Icon LLC in Seattle, which co-owns (with Krispy Kreme) 12 stores in the Northwest and Hawaii, tells Allison (does she ever get confused about which of her names goes first?) that two of the stores now require you buy something baked in order to get the coffee deal.

"They were experiencing a level of coffee-only purchases which will cause us to either require a purchase or discontinue the program. If the test becomes permanent, we will develop marketing materials to communicate the change to our guests.”

Still a heck of a deal. Now all we need is a good five cent cigar to go with it.


Krispy Kreme forced to eat half-baked marketing scheme

Last week, the kreme hit the fan when

Do-Vo and Vo-Vo An Australian biscuit company has threatened legal action against US chain Krispy Kreme if does not stop selling its Iced Dough-Vo doughnut. Arnott believes the product is almost identical to its own Iced Vo-Vo biscuit, and breaches trademarks registered in 1906.

Krispy claimed the confection was meant as a tribute to the beloved Vo Vo.

This resulted in some of the best headlines I have ever read:

What about: Krisp Kreme donut turns to humble pie


As you can tell the Aussies take their Iced Vo Vo’s very seriously: In his November 2007 victory speech, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd jokingly urging his campaign team to have a strong cup of tea with an Iced Vo Vo before getting to work.This reportedly led to skyrocketing Iced VoVo sales, prompting Arnott’s to send a shipping pallet of the biscuits to the Prime Minister’s office in Canberra’s New Parliament House.

Eat a dozen donuts and “support teen diabetes”

KKchallengeParticipants in the The Krispy Kreme Challenge run two miles from the NC State Belltower to the Krispy Kreme store located on Peace St. in Raleigh. After downing a full dozen of the famous Krispy Kreme doughnuts, the runner must run the two miles back. All in one hour.

I would like to believe this is irony in the cause of a greater good. It is certainly oddity in the cause of a greater good.

I am astounded there are people who can run two miles after downing a dozen donuts.

I am terrified there are people who can down a dozen donuts in one sitting of well under an hour.

For those of you keeping score at home that works out to 2400 calories consumed (assuming you consume the basic Krispy Kreme and not any of the other flavors). From a dozen Krispies you would get 144g of fat or 216% of  your required daily allowance (based on a 2K calorie diet and these numbers are all from KK’s website who knows what the FDA would call it). If you weigh 180 pounds you would burn off 470 calories running four miles. Not sure how many calories you would lose if you … um … regurgitated at the finish line which is certainly what would happen to me should I make it that far (highly unlikely).

Cheers to the Krispy Kreme Challenge folks for helping out others (some 5500+ participated this year) AND for not hiding the impact of consuming all this stuff.

From their fun facts page:

  • If stacked, the boxes used during the challenge would stand over 16 stories tall.
  • If stacked, the doughnuts eated during the course of the day would stand over
    twice as tall as the BB&T building at Two Hanover Square, the tallest building in Raleigh.
  • Collectively, the Krispy Kreme Challengers will eat over a third of a ton of doughnuts
    on the day of the race.
  • This year’s competitors will run over 4,000 miles.
  • The number of Calories eaten on the day of the race is enough energy to power a 60W light bulb for over 125 hours.

One sweet marketing opportunity: Senior citizens picket over donut ban

At issue is a decision to refuse free doughnuts, pies and bread that were being donated to senior centers around Putnam County, north of New York City. Officials were concerned that the county was setting a bad nutritional precedent by providing mounds of doughnuts and other sweets to seniors.

Krispy Kreme? Dunkin Donuts? Homer Simpson? Someone get their PR people in gear NOW!

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Alabama cops limited to a mere two dozen free Krispy Kreme donuts

The Mobile Press-Register reports that a local Krispy Kreme posted a memo on Mardi Gras with the following: “Uniformed personnel are given 2 dozen glazed doughnuts and coffee or a fountain drink free of charge.” Should that not be enough additional doughnuts were available at a reduced rate, and discounts were also given to uniformed military personnel.

While it was a very sweet (ouch) gesture on the part of the local Krispy, isn’t that a little akin to offering free drinks at an AA meeting?

(Kudos to reporter Dan Murtaugh for a brilliant lede: “How many free doughnuts could a policeman eat if a policeman could eat free doughnuts?”)

Over in the comments section, TotalTransformation suggests that this is part of a brilliant plan to aid criminals by making sure the police stay out of shape. I disagree as these were probably Kripy’s new “100% whole wheat doughnut — with only 180 calories.” Not only are these healthier but the mere thought of a whole wheat donut makes me think they would have to give them away.

Fluff fighter cuts and runs from sticky situation

State Sen. Jarrett Barrios has ended his efforts to pass legislation that would have banned Marshmallow Fluff in Massachusetts public schools. Too bad, it probably would have been the most effective thing the legislature did all year.

Speaking of incredibly strange foods based on high fructose corn syrup: Twinkie lasagna or Twinkie tacos or even Twinkie kebabs. Yep, not since the incredibly well read Krispy Kreme Burger have I encountered such terrifying food ideas. I’m not sure whether I am relieved or disappointed that none of these concotions have tomato sauce, melted cheese or some form of meat.

In case you missed it …

Just a quick one before I go

Headlines I never expected to see: Free Trade Pacts Are Bad For Business. What makes it so unexpected? It’s from Forbes.

GM sold GMAC? But that was the only part of the company that actually made money…

Previously I reported that the word games at Neopets didn’t recognize the words sex or cards – add id to that list says CollateralDamageJR ™. Where the bloody hell did a 9.5 year old learn the word id?

David “The Book Thief of Lenovo” Churbuck has discovered a web site specializing in “bus plunge journalism.” Has to be read to be believed.

me me meEver wondered what I look like? I didn’t think so, but this is a pretty good representation. Gotta love the photo booth at the bowling alley. Stat land: The Krispy Kreme burger entry continues to be the most read thing here on the site. You people continue to be weird. Tuesday saw the most visits ever to the site, nearly a third more than usual. Maybe folks like what they saw ‘cuz the numbers have stayed up for the rest of the week. If you like the site, please pass the word along about it. If you don’t please leave a really, angry post. I love those.

You people sure are weird

Well, you’re reading me which is one definite indicator. Readership here at CD is going up and up much to my amazement (about 100 views a day, so I don’t think I have to worry about some MSM trying to buy me out) and the consistently most read piece: The Krispy-Kreme burger, I wish I was making this up. From now on, Krispy Kreme is all I write about.

But such loyalty deserves a reward, so… first five people to post a response to this post will get a GENUINE Collateral Damage™ (not really) refrigerator magnet. It’s from CafePress, so you know it’s crappy! (Offer excludes those seven people who already have one.) I am actively seeking another supplier for embranded swag, if anyone has any suggestions please pass them along. I’m in marketing so I’m all about quality Swag.
BTW, 2nd most read post? Starbucks to Tea Drinkers: Drop Dead!


USDA doesn’t think latest mad cow scare will hurt beef sales, also questions the whole what goes up coming down thing.

File under: Who you gonna believe … me or your lying eyes?

Mad cow alert won’t harm beef sales: USDA’s Johanns qoes the Reuters headlines. Is it just me or does the ability to whistle as you pass the graveyard seem to be a prerequisite to getting a job in this administration? In this case our maestro of mouth must is Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns who was in Poland when he said, “I do not think it will have a negative impact on trade with other countries.” Sadly communications between eastern Europe and the Pacific rim are not all that great and word of this pronouncement had not yet reached South Korea. SK was nearly simultaneously announcing that yes they would ban US beef if this latest cow turned out to be crazy.

A lesson for Mr. Johanns comes from India where the government has had to do a massive ad campaign to get people to eat chicken and eggs again after avian flu whacked sales. Keep in mind that this downturn in sales came DESPITE the fact that there is no link whatsoever between eating poultry and catching the so far not-so-dread disease.

Maybe if they’d just serve the chicken on Krispy Kreme

The Krispy Kreme-burger, I wish I was making this up

The Consumerist, which is truly the blog I wish I’d thought of first, reports that the Gateway Grizzlies minor league baseball team have broken new ground in culinary degradation.

“The burger…consists of a thick and juicy burger topped with sharp cheddar cheese and two slices of bacon. The burger is then placed in between each side of a Krispy Kreme Original Glazed doughnut.”

Further quoth the press release:

The Grizzlies have added a unique concession item each of the least two seasons. In 2004 “Baseball’s Best Hotdog” hit GMC Stadium. It consisted of a 1/5 pound Farmland 8 inch All Beef Black Angus Hot Dog, topped with two strips of freshly cooked bacon, 1 oz. Sautéed Onions, 1 oz. Sautéed Sauerkraut and ½ oz. Cheddar Cheese Sauce, all on a fresh baked bun. In 2005, the “Swiss Brat” was introduced. The “Swiss Brat” was made up of a Landshire Bratwurst with a slice of Swiss cheese in the middle of it. The cheese was then melted and 1oz. of Sautéed Sauerkraut was placed on top.

“We are excited to work with the Grizzlies this season on Baseball’s Best Burger,” said Tina Bryan, Vice President of Marketing for Sweet Traditions, the local area developer for Krispy Kreme Doughnuts. “Our doughnuts have been used in such things as wedding cakes, bread pudding, fondue, and now a hamburger bun. What a fun and unique way to offer our signature Original Glazed doughnut to Grizzlies fans.”

I am predicting sales in the high 1 figure. Oh Lord, I hope I’m right.

Today’s pointless digression … Collateral Damage is something of a minor league freak. I and the entire CD family have happily gone miles out of our way to go to many of minor league games. Indeed, my first fiance proposed to me in the stands along first base at McCoy Stadium — home of the Pawtucket Red Sox. (I’ve had two fiancees and only one wife. You could say that fiance No. 1 never made it to second base. Or that she was just a short stop of my affections. Or you could just hope no one ever made a joke like that. You would clearly be hoping in vain.)