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Nutella's parent company is rolling out a 'Better Butterfinger' ad campaign to highlight the candy brand's massive changes

Business Insider logo Business Insider 4 days ago Kate Taylor
a piece of food: The new Butterfinger keeps the iconic texture while slightly dialing back on the sweetness and ratcheting up the peanut flavor for a more complex treat. © Hollis Johnson/Business Insider The new Butterfinger keeps the iconic texture while slightly dialing back on the sweetness and ratcheting up the peanut flavor for a more complex treat.
  • Butterfinger has a new recipe.
  • On Monday, the brand rolled out an ad campaign to celebrate the new recipe, with the tagline: "nobody lays a finger on my better Butterfinger."
  • Butterfinger's revamp follows Ferrero - the owner of Nutella, Ferrero Rocher, and Tic Tac - acquiring Butterfinger from Nestlé in a $2.8 billion deal in 2018.

Butterfinger has changed its recipe, and it has a new ad campaign to debut the revamped candy.

On Monday, parent company Ferrero launched the "Better Butterfinger" campaign, with the tagline: "nobody lays a finger on my better Butterfinger."

Read more: We tried the new Butterfinger next to the candy's old recipe - and the winner is obvious

Kristen Mandel, a senior director of marketing at Ferrero-owned Ferrara, told Business Insider in late 2018 that the campaign is the largest investment she has seen in Butterfinger in her 14 years working with the brand and other former Nestlé US candies.

The difference between the two bars is clear from the packaging alone. While Butterfinger's wrapper has been getting more yellow, the new bar (on top) is a nearly neon shade, with a promise of an "improved recipe" in the corner. © Hollis Johnson/Business Insider The difference between the two bars is clear from the packaging alone. While Butterfinger's wrapper has been getting more yellow, the new bar (on top) is a nearly neon shade, with a promise of an "improved recipe" in the corner.

The new recipe uses a larger, Jumbo runner peanut in the bar's core, utilizes a higher percentage of cocoa and milk in the chocolate coating, and cuts ingredients such as the preservative TBHQ and hydrogenated oils.

The wrapping is now bright yellow and double-layered to prevent the candy from becoming stale.

Butterfinger's revamp follows Ferrero - the owner of Nutella, Ferrero Rocher, and Tic Tac - acquiring Butterfinger from Nestlé for $2.8 billion in 2018, along with the rest of Nestlé's American candy portfolio. According to Mandel, the company began its overhaul of Butterfinger immediately after the deal closed on April 1, 2018.

"The priority is really bringing Butterfinger back into the spotlight as a modern-day icon, because it hadn't gotten the attention it warrants in recent years," Mandel said. "We're excited to have all the resources and investment to put behind it."

© Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

As companies work to drive sales of struggling brands, sometimes revamped recipes result in backlash from loyal customers.

Toblerone felt the wrath of shoppers in 2016, when it changed its iconic triangular shape in the UK to avoid raising prices. Butterfinger's sister brand Nutella faced boycott threats after quietly changing its recipe in 2017. And, in 2018, customers reacted furiously to the mere idea of having less peanut butter in their Reese's cups.

Mandel said that tests of the new Butterfinger have reinforced the company's conviction that both dedicated fans and new shoppers will embrace the revamped recipe.

"Anytime you change, someone super, super set in their ways may not like it," she said. "But the feedback we've gotten from consumers makes us confident."

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