Kraft Heinz Tells Wall Street Journal 'We’ll Innovate Smarter'

Jan. 27, 2020
Kraft Heinz is going to be more judicious about paring some brands and choosing others for product development.

Kraft Heinz is going to be more judicious about paring some brands and choosing others for product development, its CEO told the Wall Street Journal.

Miguel Patricio, who took over the top spot in June, says he’s looking for “fewer, bigger bets” with an eye toward developing the kind of hit products that Kraft Heinz hasn’t seen in years.

There will be fewer new product introductions, but they will be more carefully selected and supported, Patricio says. Like many processors of center-store products, Kraft Heinz has struggled for years with consumers moving away from highly processed foods. Last year, the company took a writedown of nearly $17 billion on the value of its brands.

Patricio wouldn’t specify which businesses might be targeted for innovation. He said, however, that R&D had been stifled partly because Kraft Heinz makes such a wide variety of products, sold in 56 different sections of the supermarket.

“If you try to innovate in 56 different categories every year, you can’t execute on all of them,” Patricio told the Journal. “We need to be more selective.”

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