ATLANTA (CNN) – Good news, Peeps fans! Not only will Peeps be back on store shelves in time for Easter, they will also come in a new form.
Pepsi and Peeps are collaborating on a new drink that combines the two extra sweet flavors, the companies announced Thursday. The new cola, called “Pepsi x Peeps”, mixes the flavor of a Pepsi with the “soft and sweet” marshmallow flavor of Peeps. That makes it the “ideal, thirst-quenching accessory for spring,” according to the companies.
It’s the first time Pepsi has used marshmallow in its cola. Pepsi often uses seasonal flavors to build buzz for its brand. Last winter, the brand launched Pepsi drinks with hot chocolate and apple pie to celebrate the holidays.
However, Peeps fans may be disappointed that they cannot buy the new flavor.
Instead, Pepsi is giving away 3,000 packages through its #HangingWithMyPEEPS contest. Each winner, who uses that hashtag and tags Pepsi on Instagram and Twitter showing their spring celebrations, will receive a package containing three 7.5-ounce mini-cans in bright yellow, pink and blue.
Pepsi reached out to Peeps to collaborate for a spring-inspired flavor, Todd Kaplan, Pepsi’s vice president of marketing, told CNN Business. He said the combination was intended to provide a “moment of joy” after the hard past year.
“Taste is really important to customers,” he said. “They want sweet things and they want to connect with things emotionally. Peeps has his own subculture that we wanted to tap into.”
Peeps has been the # 1 selling chocolate-free candy brand at Easter for more than 20 years, according to owner Just Born Quality Confections. Approximately 2 billion peeps occur annually.
Kaplan said it could eventually be sold publicly if there is demand. For now, it’s emulating the “fall culture” (aka limited merchandise release) commonly used by sneakers and even McDonald’s to excite fans of the two brands.
“These limited-time offers are a way to engage our core fans and give them fun things to hug,” said Kaplan.
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