Heinz Baked Beans
Heinz baked beans
|Product type||Canned food|
|Country||United Kingdom, United States|
|Related brands||Tomato ketchup|
|Tagline||Beanz meanz Heinz|
Heinz Beanz were launched in 1901 as "Heinz Baked Beans" and were produced in the United States until 1928. In 1901, Heinz Baked Beans were first sold at the Fortnum & Mason department store in London. After opening its first overseas office in London in 1896, the company opened its first UK factory in Peckham, south London, in 1905. This was followed by a second factory at Harlesden, north-west London in 1919. Production was started at a former munitions factory at Standish near Wigan in 1946. A new factory opened in Kitt Green, Wigan, in 1958.
The Heinz factory in Kitt Green is one of the largest food factories in Europe, and produces more than 1 billion cans of food every year.
In the United States, Heinz Baked Beans had for many years only been available as grey imports in "British Goods" specialty stores. Today they are now available as official imports in many US supermarkets and specialty stores, with a label similar to the older British label, but customized for the US market (US spelling and US Nutrition Facts).
In 1967, Heinz launched an advertising campaign with the slogan "Beanz Meanz Heinz". The phrase was created by advertising executive Maurice Drake and went on to become one of the best-known advertising slogans in the United Kingdom. Drake later said the slogan was "written over two pints of beer in The Victoria pub in Mornington Crescent". In 1998, Heinz Baked Beans was voted one of 12 brands that citizens of the United Kingdom think best represents the final 10 years of the millennium.
In 2008, "Heinz Baked Beans" were renamed "Heinz Beanz", as they aren't actually 'baked' but stewed. The original title was "a bit of a mouthful to pronounce", according to the company.
In 2001, the Food Standards Agency of the Government of the United Kingdom found Heinz canned baked beans was one of a number of well-known canned products to be contaminated with the hormone disruptor bisphenol A (BPA). This chemical forms part of the membrane that lines the cans. The Heinz company put out a statement – "Although UK and European food authorities have stated that minute levels of BPA in can coatings are safe, Heinz remains committed to moving to alternatives."
Heinz Baked Beans are produced by sealing raw beans and sauce in the cans, which are then placed in large pressure cookers. This gives the sauce its thick consistency and ensures a long shelf life for the product.
In popular culture
Heinz Baked Beans were referenced by the English rock band The Who on their 1967 album The Who Sell Out. In addition to a humorous fake radio jingle advertising the product ("What's for tea, darling?"), lead singer Roger Daltrey is pictured on the front cover sitting in a bathtub full of baked beans, and holding a giant Heinz can in his arm; Daltrey later reported that he had caught pneumonia because of the beans being very cold.
In seasons four to six of the television series Mad Men, landing and losing the Heinz Baked Beans advertising account served as an ongoing plot line, with a fictional Heinz executive, Raymond Geiger, becoming one of the firm's more difficult clients.
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