Kraft Mac And Cheese Pranked All Of America By Changing Its Recipe Four Months Ago And Not Telling A Soul
There’s no denying that humans are a dumb, reticent bunch. We get upset at even the most minute of changes, especially when they are for the better.
Take … Jesus, do I even need an example? Any time anything we are intimately familiar with suggests a change to improve its quality or our health, we respond with the grace of a hippo shitting on its tail.
Kraft wanted to remove all artificial preservatives and colors from their flagship food stuff, but knowing the backlash they’d receive for changing the recipe to their iconic Mac and Cheese, they just said fuck it and didn’t tell anyone.
From The New York Times:
A new formula that removed artificial preservatives and swapped out artificial dyes for a combination of paprika, annatto and turmeric had been under development for three years, and last April Kraft announced that it planned to make the switch. But when the reformulated version hit shelves in December, only customers paying careful attention to the ingredients listed on the side of the box would have known. Even the orangeish color of the mac and cheese remained the same.
“We’ve sold well over 50 million boxes with essentially no one noticing,” said Greg Guidotti, vice president for meal solutions at Kraft Heinz.
The reasoning came from when they announced the change back in April. Everyone freaked.
Some on social media even said, shortly after the April announcement, that they thought the mac and cheese tasted different when, in reality, they were still eating the previous version.
When faced with that kind of unrelenting stupidity, why not just not deal with it instead? It’s fucking brilliant.
“This was absolutely brilliant of them to change it and not say anything,” said Lynn Dornblaser, director of innovation and insight at the market research firm Mintel.
They’re hyping the news know, with a new ad campaign featuring Craig Kilborn, because the best part of a prank is yelling PRANK after you tricked everyone.
Mr. Guidotti said that since the company revealed that it had been using the new formula for some time, customer feedback has been generally positive, although there was a spate of posts from customers claiming that they actually had noticed the change. “When you say something, people will say, ‘Oh yeah, I knew that,’ ” he said. “There’s psychology involved in there as well.”
Every company should do this.