At least 17 birthday-cake flavored new products have hit US market in recent years compared with three the previous five years, Datamonitor says; products include cookies, vodka, ice cream, toothpaste
May 6, 2013
– You don't have to wait for your birthday to dig in to birthday cake anymore.
That childish desire to celebrate your birthday every day is evolving into a multimillion dollar industry: birthday cake-flavored everything.
Some of the nation's biggest — and smallest — product makers have figured out how to pack the familiar white cake and white frosting flavoring into everything from cookies to toothpaste to lip gloss to vodka.
At least 17 birthday-cake flavored new products have hit the market over the past handful of years vs. three the previous five years, reports research firm Datamonitor. Most have been ultra-hot sellers, with the exception of a birthday cake flavored yogurt from Yoplait that was yanked only when Yoplait's entire Splitz line was discontinued this year.
The trend isn't just being driven by kids, but by nostalgic adults who long for memories of times past, says Tom Vierhile, innovation insights director. Boomers, in particular, are enamored with birthday cake mania.
"Even as kids today act more like adults," says Vierhile, "adults seem to be the same way, tapping into their inner child."
In the world of product marketing, every day can be your birthday as birthday cake flavored products are rolling out faster than you can blow out the candles. Coffee Bean , Tea Leaf plans to introduce Birthday Cake Ice Blended drinks for $4.95 later this month. The Coffee Bean Tea Leaf Fullscreen
Recent birthday cake-flavored stuff:
Ice drinks. Later this month, Coffee Bean Tea & Leaf rolls out Birthday Cake Ice Blended beverages. "It's like cake and icing in a cup," says Michelle Stene, director of product development. The company revised the flavor 35 times before they nailed it, she says.
Vodka. Looking for a new, indulgent flavor, spirits maker Beam rolled out Pinnacle Cake Vodka two years ago. Sales took off, and it's soon to expand the line to Strawberry Shortcake, says Deb Boyda, general manager at Beam Global Spirits & Wine. "Pinnacle lets you have your cake and drink it, too."
Cookies. To celebrate Oreo turning 100 last year, Mondelez introduced a limited-time Birthday Cake Oreo — with the white filling in a birthday cake flavor, says Janda Lukin, brand director for Oreo.
Ice Cream. Will the birthday cake novelty work for frozen novelties? Unilever hopes so, with the introduction this spring of Good Humor Birthday Cake bars. "Our technology even mimics the porous texture of cake when you bite into the bar," says Nick Soukas, director of ice cream
Peeps. Just Born, maker of Peeps, tested Party Cake Peeps in Walmart stores at Easter, and they were so popular they'll go national next Easter, says spokesman Matthew J. Pye.
Protein powder. Birthday cake is the third best-selling of 11 flavors of protein powder sold by SDC Nutrition. "If you could eat cake and lose weight," proposes Devenee Schumacher, director of marketing, "isn't that the best of both worlds?"
Toothpaste. Novelty product maker Archie McPhee's Cupcake Toothpaste hit the market in 2011. Spokesman David Wahl says one dad e-mailed his kid's comments to the company: "He says it isn't like he's brushing his teeth anymore — he's frosting them."