Kraft Foods: The Coffe Pod Launch, Case Topic

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Geoff Herzog is the product manager for coffee development at Kraft Foods Canada. After reviewing successful results of single-serve coffee pod systems, he wondered whether it would be successful in other areas. It was July 6, 2004, and Herzog had just learned that Kraft Foods North America was planning an aggressive launch of coffee pods in the United States. He then had only a month to decide whether or not the company should proceed with a simultaneous launch in Canada, or await the U.S. results.


Kraft Foods was founded as a cheese manufacturer in 1903. They had evolved into North America’s largest food and beverage company and the number two player in the world. They grew to have operations in more than 155 countries by 2004. Kraft consisted of two operations, Kraft Foods North America and Kraft Foods International, and its business was divided into five product categories. These categories are beverages, convenience meals, cheese, grocery, and snacks. The Kraft brand portfolio was among the strongest of the global consumer packaged goods with 50 $100-million brands and 5 $1 billion dollar brands. Kraft also has a strong distribution network and well-earned reputation for developing innovative new products and food applications.

The company created a mission to achieve leadership in the markets it served, which it pursued by fostering innovation, achieving high product quality, and keeping a close eye on profit margins. Kraft established five operational objectives to achieve these goals. First goal was to build a superior brand value for consumers by delivering greater product benefits at the right price. The second objective was to enhance product...

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...uality, the data showed a positive gain with each scenario. Therefore, there would be no reason to wait for the United States results to come back in order to move forward. Given that data has already been collected for the Canadian coffee market and that otherwise, Kraft would have to just put more money into more market research, it would be a waste of resources and time if Kraft did not launch their product at all, and therefore beneficial for them to launch Maxwell House and Nabob coffee pods simultaneously with the U.S. launch. Kraft Foods is one of the widest-known, successful brands in their industry, and expansion is one of the best methods for continued growth and development.


Kerin, Roger A., and Robert A. Peterson. Strategic marketing problems: cases and comments. 12th ed. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 2010. Print.
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