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PepsiCo’s Doritos has partnered with youth mental health organisation, ReachOut and changed its packaging across its entire range to feature a “Be Bold. Reach Out” message and QR code on pack.

Blue stickers are featured on the limited-edition Doritos packs.
Blue stickers are featured on the limited-edition Doritos packs.

The QR code on the limited-edition packs accesses ReachOut’s Checking In With Yourself Quiz, designed to help young people track how they’re feeling and provide steps to take if they feel like they need some additional advice or support.

The packaging strategy was led by the Republic of Everyone, with the final design and execution led by New Zealand agency, Periscope.

Vandita Pandey, CMO at PepsiCo said, “With mental health being the number one concern for Gen Z we recognised that Doritos had a role in this space given it’s a brand that’s enjoyed by so many young Aussies.”

Pandey confirmed that Doritos undertook extensive research on the packaging to ensure it was “relevant, credible, has stopping power at shelf, normalises mental health and most importantly would encourage people to reach out by challenging them to think about how they are feeling in the moment “Feeling you, Feeling blue?” and encourage them to reachout as well as understand support is available for those who need it.”

She said that the QR code was integrated on every Doritos pack to direct people to ReachOut and remind them to check in with themselves more often.

“We learnt that the design on pack needed to be disruptive to get people’s attention in store to motivate them to want to find out more and engage further with the topic,” she added, explaining that this lead to the launch of the disruptive limited -edition packs which feature images of young people’s faces on pack (a Doritos first) and blue stickers to encourage people to “Be Bold and ReachOut”.

Gilbert Chung, creative director, Periscope said, "Working together with Doritos and ReachOut to help ‘start the conversation’ on mental wellness was a fantastic and unique opportunity. As a brand with global reach and a bold, social focus, Doritos is well positioned to help destigmatise the issue. Letting people know that it’s ok to be less than 100 per cent and have a chat with those who may need it, perhaps over a bag of chips, is a wonderful thing,"

Chung admitted that one of the challenges he and his team experienced was finding the right models for the face of the on-pack campaign.

"They needed to represent not only the generation that mental health issues are really affecting but also be relatable. The imagery is supported with short relevant call outs that are intended to leave you with a thought on yourself or others and start those much-needed conversations. Being a creative partner in this campaign was a real privilege, it’s not every day that we get to work on an FMCG project that has the potential to make a real social impact."

"This is an important issue and we’re proud to be able to utilise our brand platform to reach people across the nation with such an important message and partner with ReachOut to give them access to the support they might need,” he added.

Ashley de Silva, CEO of ReachOut, said that finding practical strategies to prevent everyday issues from becoming bigger can be really beneficial. “Being able to check in with yourself and openly acknowledge that you might be having a tough day is such a big and important step in all of our mental health journeys. “After a challenging few years for young people in Australia, conversation and connection is so important and we are proud to be partnering with a brand like Doritos to increase youth mental health awareness and encourage people to check in with themselves and each other,” he said.

“We’re proud to partner with ReachOut because we believe people should feel confident and comfortable checking in with themselves and expressing how they feel. It’s an incredible online mental health service that is available for anyone 24/7 and we think more people need to know these services exist and are easy to use,” said Pandey.

“We are using the power of our voice and our brand platform, with three months of media and 13 millions packs in market, to remind people to ‘Be Bold and Reach Out’ and access this amazing network when they need it.

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