ConAgra Foods Beefs up Its Value Lineup with Six New Banquet Entrees, a New Manwich Thick & Chunky Variety and Two New Flavors of Van Camp’s Beans

Price-conscious families crave more meat, more vegetables and more flavor at the same price

OMAHA, Neb.  (Profitable.com)  ConAgra Foods, Inc., (NYSE: CAG) one of North America’s leading food makers, has introduced six new varieties of Banquet® frozen entrees, two new flavors of Van Camp’s® baked beans and Manwich® Thick & Chunky, the first new flavor of Manwich sloppy joe sauce in nearly 10 years.

“With the lingering effects of the recession, many shoppers are turning to canned and frozen products, which can offer both cost savings and convenience for those who are cooking and eating at home more,” said Phil Lempert, Supermarket Guru and spokesperson for ConAgra Foods. “For an average retail price of $1 and under per serving, the new frozen entrees from Banquet and Manwich Thick & Chunky variety deliver value-priced meals that are also great tasting and wholesome.”

A recognized leader in frozen foods, ConAgra Foods sells more than 3 million packages of frozen food products each day with brands such as Banquet, Healthy Choice® and Marie Callender’s®. Banquet is ConAgra Foods’ largest consumer brand with more than $1 billion in annual net sales. With an average retail price of $2.50 for six servings, the Banquet Family Size entrees product line has expanded from four varieties to seven with new items including Zesty Marinara Sauce over Meatballs, Cheesy Smothered Charbroiled Patties, and Chicken Marinara. New Single Serve entrees, with an average retail price of $1, include Cheesy Macaroni & Beef, Spaghetti & Popcorn Chicken, and Honey Mustard Chicken.

“The majority of Banquet consumers enjoy our entrees for dinner at home so they’re looking for a balanced meal that includes meat,” said Christiane Brocky, brand director, ConAgra Foods. “We’ve also added kid-favorite meals such as Cheesy Macaroni & Beef and Spaghetti & Popcorn Chicken to appeal more to the whole family.”

Manwich Thick & Chunky, with an average retail price of $1.50 for a 15-ounce can, has the same spices and seasoning as Original Manwich with a thicker sauce and more chunks of sweet onions and bell peppers. All three Manwich varieties – Thick & Chunky, Original and Bold – contain a full serving of vegetables, making it easier for consumers to get their recommended five servings of vegetables and fruit each day.

“It’s a sloppy joe that’s a bit less sloppy because of the thicker sauce,” said Sandra Williams, brand director, ConAgra Foods. “And with the bigger chunks of vegetables, which are more visible in the sauce, moms feel confident that Manwich is a wholesome family meal for a great value.”

Since 2007, the sloppy joe category has grown from $89 million to $96 million with Manwich growing 7 percent in dollar sales during this period(1). Currently, the brand has 83 percent dollar share in the category(2).

Van Camp’s also has expanded its product line to include flavored baked beans, a growing area that makes up 60 percent of the beans in sauce category. New Van Camp’s Sweet Onion and Maple and Brown Sugar varieties, available now in the Southeast, give consumers the flavor and convenience they’re looking for at a value price; a 28-ounce can serves six for an average retail price of $1.59.

Banquet, Manwich and Van Camp’s are brands of ConAgra Foods, Inc., (NYSE: CAG), one of North America’s leading food companies, with brands in 97 percent of America’s households. Consumers find Chef Boyardee, Egg Beaters, Healthy Choice, Hebrew National, Hunt’s, Marie Callender’s, Orville Redenbacher’s, PAM, Peter Pan, Reddi-wip, Slim Jim, Snack Pack and many ConAgra Foods brands in grocery, convenience, mass merchandise and club stores. ConAgra Foods also has a strong business-to-business presence, supplying frozen potato and sweet potato products as well as other vegetable, spice and grain products to a variety of well-known restaurants, foodservice operators and commercial customers. For more information, please visit us at www.conagrafoods.com.

1) As measured by Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) for total US FDMx, 52 weeks ending May 30, 2010.

2) As measured by Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) for total US FDMx, 52 weeks ending May 30, 2010.