Mondelez aims to break “coffee coma” with Carte Noire launch

Mondelez International plans to grow the coffee category in Australia and pull consumers out of their "coffee coma" by launching a premium new brand, Carte Noire.

Carte Noire is France's number one coffee brand and Mondelez International, formerly Kraft Foods, is the world's second biggest coffee company, but up until now it didn't have a presence in Australia.

"It’s very exciting that we’re bringing Carte Noire as a global brand into Australia, and also into a number of countries like the Netherlands," Darren O'Brien, managing director, Foods, at Mondelez International, told Food magazine.

"As we speak, we are rolling this brand out because we truly believe that it is a unique, fantastic tasting coffee that we want to get geographic expansion with."

The Carte Noire launch comprises the Carte Noire Millicano Wholebean Instant coffee as well as the classic Carte Noire instant coffee, now available in all Woolworths, Coles and Metcash stores.

The Millicano offering combines instant coffee with finely-milled beans, whereas the classic Carte Noire is a premium freeze-dried instant coffee.

To support the new products, Mondelez International has launched an intensive new marketing campaign, with a strong 'Fire and Ice' theme.

"The essence to getting the right flavour and the right aromas in coffee is around the roasting process, and so fire and ice – that’s the theme around our advertising campaign – is about the precise moment in which you actually put this cold shower of water into the roasting process, which basically stops the roasting process in its tracks. That’s where the flavours and the aromas are captured and that’s really what determines the personality or the flavour and taste of the coffee, and that’s the fire and ice roasting process we use for Carte Noire," O'Brien said.

The fire and ice theme that can be seen in the new campaign plays a key role in separating the brand from its competitors.

"It [the TV ad] is very different from [the rest of] the coffee space. It doesn’t open up in a kitchen, it doesn’t have lovely music, it’s not about reminiscing about your childhood. It’s actually a full-on action scene out of which we want to get the break through and bring people’s attention to Carte Noire and the fire and ice message. We’re going to be continuing that through everything we do."

This will include targeted sampling to over half a million homes and in-store promotions and activities which aim to break consumers out of their routine coffee purchasing habits.

"We’re doing some terrific things in-store in terms of how we can disrupt what we call the coffee coma, where people are just going through the coffee aisle on auto-pilot and making a choice that they’ve regularly made. Part of the reason is that they haven’t had a lot of innovation to choose from in coffee in recent years, particularly not in instant coffee, and so we think that bringing innovation and great taste and being able to disrupt that coma and awaken people to Carte Noire .. is what’s going to make this successful," O'Brien said.

Australians already drink a lot of coffee, and have quite high expectations when it comes to their daily hit, O'Brien admits, but Carte Noire's launch isn't about simply adding another brand to the mix, it's about achieving category growth.

"In this very concentrated retail market, any proposition that doesn’t bring category growth is not that exciting for the retailers, and so certainly we want to bring innovation to the category and get category growth because this is very much about premiumisation," he said.

"Because they [Australians] are already leaders in terms of scale and how much they drink, the real question is how much more premium coffee can they drink?"


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