November 7, 2007
Fruit Brand Naming Goes Plain Jane
The CEO of the company says that savvy customers have prompted him to break away from Chiquita, a brand name that I am sure most of us associate with bananas and not tomatoes and cucumbers: the catchy “Chiquita Banana” tune that came out during the 40s and is still instantly recognizable thanks to its frequent updates over the years.
One can’t blame Melones for shooting for some brand name differentiation, not least because Chiquita has come under some heavy fire as of late for its political dealings that have hurt its stock price.
This news does remind me how an unlikely brand name can become ripe with meaning after years of repetitive exposure.
The only other banana brand name I can think of off the top of my head is Dole, who, amazingly, once used a Pink Floyd tune to try and take market share from Chiquita's fruity dancer using a psychedelic stripper. The ridiculously phallic tagline was, "if you feel it, peel it"! Seems like they’re also in trouble lately for using banned pesticides.
I’m thinking naming a vegetable just “Plain Jane” is just a good idea for Melones — no chemicals, no politics here, just plain ole produce — otherwise we may all go bananas.
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