They’re B-a-a-c-c-k: Twinkies Make Early Appearance at Wal-Mart


Wal-Mart’s email push on Friday.

One of the big stories making the “Summer Friday” news was the return of Twinkies to Wal-Mart ahead of schedule.

Per USA Today, the world’s largest retailer says it is selling the snack cakes at about 1,600 stores starting Friday and that about 3,000 of its 4,000 U.S. stores should have them by Sunday morning, a day before Hostess had said the spongy yellow cakes would start hitting shelves nationwide.

A couple of things worth noting about the “new” Twinkies:

>> Hostess Brands LLC says the spongy yellow cakes will have a shelf life of 45 days. That’s nearly three weeks longer than the 26 days the previous owner had stated as the shelf life for Twinkies.

Side Note: Funny considering how Twinkies were part of the Apocalypse ad aired during the Super Bowl (Remember, “Where’s Dave?”).


Where’s Dave?

>> Wal-Mart won’t be getting the frozen Twinkies . The new owners of Hostess have said the company will be freezing Twinkies for about 10% of its retailers upon request, which lets stores stamp their own expiration dates on the cakes.

And there’s more… By late next week, stores will also have Hostess Mini Muffins and fried Fruit Pies, said Wal-Mart spokeswoman Veronica Marshall.

Earlier in the week, The Wall Street Journal did an Infographic comparing the new and old Twinkies.


More Reading:

Twinkies Decontructed, a book by Steve Ettlinger provides information (perhaps TMI as in Too Much Information) about how each Twinkie ingredient goes through the process of being crushed, baked, fermented, refined, and/or reacted into a totally unrecognizable goo or powder with a strange name—all for the sake of creating a simple snack cake. Yummy, right?

New Packaging.

New Packaging.

Adweek recently ran a story about reviving the Twinkie brand.  In it, Dave Lubeck, vp of Bernstein-Rein ( the advertising agency of record), said that starting with a new tagline on the box (“The sweetest comeback in the history of ever”), his agency will “leverage the nostalgia associated with the Hostess brand and, at the same time, reintroduce it with a voice that’s more contemporary and an attitude that’s bolder and more relevant to today’s consumers.”  In particular, the article notes that the real challenge for Twinkies will be moving past the nostalgia — figuring out how to connect with younger consumers.Their first attempt seems to be the “Prepare Your Cake Face” promo on Instagram:


So what do you think?  Will Twinkies “break through” and be the “must have” snack for a new generation?



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  1. We saw this story ( that had some interesting points about brand lessons to be gleaned from the Twinkie saga — particularly for the snack-cake category:
    * Iconic brands have a long shelf life. At a time when private-label offerings are stealing market share from national brands, the market for Twinkies is not in doubt because of the brand’s “iconic” status and large, loyal customer base.
    * “We never said we were healthy.” Twinkies have never pretended to be healthy, and that’s just fine with most people.
    * “Don’t pimp my Twinkie.” Twinkies have become iconic in part because they’ve stoically withstood the changing times as consumers cycled through low-carb, low-fat, and high-protein phases.  Any move to change the recipe to fit popular dietary trends might only backfire.
    * Cutting a bigger slice of a larger cake.  There are “plenty of strategies to continue expanding the snack-cake market.  Snack cakes also play well to the new snacking culture in terms of portability, convenience and affordability, the report observes.


  1. […] It’s been just about a month since we wrote about the return of Twinkies (They’re B-a-a-c-c-k: Twinkies Make Early Appearance at Wal-Mart). […]

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