New Covent Garden, the UK’s best-selling fresh soup brand, is breaking new ground in FMCG marketing by enabling consumers to decide the future development of one of its best-selling lines, the popular Soup of the Month range.

In doing so, the fresh soup specialist is set to create the world’s largest online community of soup fans, working with leading social media agency FreshNetworks.

Each month, members of the online community will be invited to submit new recipe ideas based on a pre-selected theme which reflects the time of the year. Recipes will be voted for online. New Covent Garden will then produce each month’s preferred recipe which will be sold in specially-designed soup of the month cartons featuring a picture of the winner.

Nigel Parrott, New Covent Garden Food Co. Group Marketing Director, says the ‘people’s soup’ idea will complement New Covent Garden’s wide-ranging NPD and recipe development programme which is set to be accelerated in the coming months.

“New Covent Garden loyalists love to make their own soups and we’re intent on using social media to harness that creative flair in the kitchen. Importantly, however, the online activity will also reach an entirely new audience of younger soup fans who will relate to products created by consumers for consumers,” says Parrott.

In addition to creating the new online community, New Covent Garden will be launching a new website which will be positioned as the ‘definitive destination for all things soup’ and a major online resource for food fans.

The new website and search for the consumer-led soups of the month will go live this summer, with the first consumer-inspired products coming to market this winter.

New Covent Garden’s soups of the month are now the 5th best-selling range in the total fresh soup market. They are playing a key role in attracting new consumers to the New Covent Garden brand which has a 37% value share of the £155 million market, five times more than the combined share of all other branded fresh soups (source: A C Nielsen 52 w/e May 14 2011).

Published on: 10:53AM on 18th July 2011