business news in context, analysis with attitude

• Safeway announced that it is recalling ground beef sold between June 6 and July 14 in nine states, a move prompted by a recall by Beef Packers Inc related to concerns about a salmonella contamination scare.

Marketing Daily reports that Bumble Bee Tuna is launching a new radio and in-store advertising campaign designed to hype the product’s value and meal versatility.

According to the story, “The campaign is timed to run during the back-to-school shopping period, although there's no direct messaging link-in. The coincidence of kicking off just days after widespread media coverage of a new study showing mounting evidence of the cardiovascular benefits associated with fish oil's omega-3 fatty acids also couldn't hurt.”

• Interesting piece in the Wall Street Journal about the previously reported decision by Procter & Gamble to develop a recession-mind version of its Tide laundry detergent – Tide Basic, which costs about 20 percent less than its traditional version and is a move away from the “new and improved” strategy that has been the centerpiece of product development for so many years.

According to the story, P&G execs agonized over the Tide basic decision, fearing that it could cannibalize sales and erode brand equity…but they finally decided that the basic version could balance Tide’s premium prices and shore up a mildly eroding market share.
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