Hostess to alter advertising strategy

LENEXA, KAN. — Hostess Brands, Inc. has joined 19 other food, beverage and quick-service restaurant…

LENEXA, KAN. — Hostess Brands, Inc. has joined 19 other food, beverage and quick-service restaurant companies in pledging to not advertise to children under the age of 13 except in instances when advertising supports products that comply with the Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative’s (CFBAI) Uniform Nutrition Criteria.

Hostess’ decision comes on the heels of the launch of its first national advertising campaign in almost a decade. Introduced in 2021, the “Live Your Mostess” campaign is focused on winning the hearts and minds of consumers by sparking uninhibited, child-like joy in adults, according to Hostess.

Hostess has placed a larger priority on marketing in recent years, with marketing playing a central role in its growth and transformation strategy. Advertising spending is expected to increase double digits at Hostess over the next several years, the company noted.

“We’ve experienced accelerated business growth over the past two years and are proud to join CFBAI,” said Dan O’Leary, chief growth officer of Hostess Brands. “This pledge marks an important milestone in our transformation journey as we demonstrate our commitment to building a socially responsible snacking powerhouse.”

Hostess said it will roll out new advertising for Hostess under its “Live Your Mostess” platform in May as well as this fall. The company also is investing in advertising for Voortman branded cookies and wafers as it seeks to increase awareness of the brand in the United States. Earlier this week Voortman said it would be releasing two limited-edition crème wafer flavors this summer: raspberry lemonade and tropical fruit.

In addition to Hostess, the CFBAI’s participants include American Licorice Co.; Burger King Corp.; Campbell Soup Co.; The Coca-Cola Co.; Conagra Brands, Inc.; Danone North America; Ferrero USA, Inc.; General Mills, Inc.; Hershey Co.; Kellogg Co.; Keurig Dr Pepper; The Kraft Heinz Co.; Mars, Inc.; McDonald’s USA, LLC; Mondelez Global, LLC; Nestle USA; PepsiCo, Inc.; Post Foods, LLC; and Unilever USA.

“For nearly 15 years, CFBAI has focused on ensuring that foods in ads directed to children meet strict nutrition criteria,” said Maureen Enright, vice president of CFBAI, BBB National Programs. “We are excited to welcome Hostess Brands as our newest CFBAI participant, joining 19 other leading food, beverage and quick-serve restaurant companies committed to ongoing improvement in the children’s food advertising landscape.”