Burger King Unleashes the Halloween Whopper

But there’s more to its new spooky look than meets the eye.

We have to hand it to the team. Burger King has been doing everything it can to make a splash on social media. From smart mascot placement to the recent stint with long-time rival McDonald’s, its viral marketing strategies have been effective in gaining the public’s attention. And it seems there’s no shortage of ideas.
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Pumpkin Spice Here To Stay

Ever since it’s introduction at Starbucks in 2003, pumpkin spice has slowly worked it’s way into our lives every fall. Once a seasonal novelty drink, pumpkin spice latte now become a craze and is as much a sign that it’s fall as the leaves turning. Starbucks has sold upwards of 200 million of them since 2003 according to this article in the Washington Post.

The company has since sold more than 200 million lattes. That’s around $80 million in annual revenue.

Since it’s undeniable success at Starbucks, other companies have played off it and used the flavor for their own products as well. We are now subjected to pumpkin spice M&M’s, Oreo’s, and plenty of others, and a  Nielson study shows that it’s super effective too.

According to the Nielson Company, sales of pumpkin spice products have grown 79% from 2011, raking in $361 million last year.

The pumpkin spice craze doesn’t appear that it will die down anytime soon. So no matter where you stand on the drink that was once just a way for Starbucks to bring a little Halloween cheer to their customers, you better get used to it.

The Halal Guys are Finally Gracing the West Coast

Some know it as “the Platter” while others call it “Chicken and Rice” or the “Gyro Spot,” but one thing is certain: the world’s most popular food cart is finally expanding to the best coast and Californian foodies can’t be more excited.
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The Affects of One City’s Demographic Shift

We talk about the demographic shift all the time and Alhambra, CA is an example of how things are transforming. “Alhambra’s Asian population has increased from less than 3% in 1970 to 52% in 2013, according to recent census surveys. The white population of the city, which has dominated for most of the city’s history, has fallen to about 11%. The Latino population has also declined slightly, to 35%” according the LA Times. What about life-long residents in this community who now have to drive to the next city just to get groceries because their neighborhood supermarket closed down and was replaced by an Asian supermarket? Do they have a right to be upset for feeling like they are being pushed out? Click here to read more.

How To Experience Foods From Around The World Without A Passport

It’s been said that Queens, NY is one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the world. With that comes authentic cuisine from around the globe. Travel Channel‘s Bizarre Foods, hosted by Andrew Zimmern, dedicated an episode to some of the more interesting dishes you may not be able to find at your local strip mall. If you want to experience food from countries without having to have a passport, take a trip to the borough of Queens.

Komodo Serves Up Great Fusion Food

I found myself in an awkward place this past weekend- craving good tacos at 10:45am in a part of town I didn’t know. I quickly called a couple different friends who I knew would know just the spot. However, neither could muster a locale that met the location and time of day requirements. Why is it so difficult to find a decent taco midday in the oasis of good food that is Los Angeles? So I rolled up my sleeves and went to Google. Read More

Night Market Culture Continues to Thrive

The 626 Night Market was born out of the desire to have something in Southern California that is similar to the night markets of Taiwan.  It started off in Pasadena a few years back to what amounted to be a block party to last weekend where they had 40,000 people converging into Santa Anita Park to enjoy the food and festivities.  Organizers have expanded the footprint to cover Orange County and downtown LA.  If you haven’t had the chance to go yet, there is one more schedule for the weekend of September 12-14.

Honey Maid Celebrates Single Dads, Gay Dads, Punk Dads and More

Ever since Cheerios struck unexpected marketing gold with its subtle ad about an interracial family, brands seem to have woken to the realization that inclusiveness can be a good thing. Or even a great thing.

And this week, no one’s more inclusive than Honey Maid. The graham cracker brand has launched a new spot from Droga5 called “This Is Wholesome,” featuring real-life parents from many different backgrounds. Although it’s only a :30, we see at least five different families, not one of which fits into advertising’s usual white, heterosexual paradigm.

There are gay dads, two mixed-race families (one military), a single dad and a punk-rock family that dances around dad’s drum kit. This level of ultra-diversity could easily feel forced if the footage hadn’t been selected and handled so deftly. The three corresponding documentary clips below also complement the campaign’s storytelling and highlight that these are real families and neighbors.

The warmth of the campaign gets doused a bit when corporate parent Mondelez International discusses the ad, but I suppose you have to give them points for practicality. The campaign’s news release opens with stats on the number of U.S. single-parent families (20 million) and Hispanic families (11.6 million), along with the fact that one in 12 marriages are interracial.

“We recognize change is happening every day, from the way in which a family looks today to how a family interacts to the way it is portrayed in media,” marketing director Gary Osifchin says in a statement. “We at Honey Maid continue to evolve and expand our varieties to provide delicious, wholesome products so they can be a part of everyday moments of connection in a world with changing, evolving family dynamics.”


Soda vs. Pop vs. Coke

But of all the important topics on which Americans disagree, nothing sparks more debate than a seemingly simple question: Is a carbonated beverage called soda, pop or coke?

If you sit down a group of people from different parts of the United States, you’re bound to come across a few cultural differences. But of all the important topics on which Americans disagree, nothing sparks more debate than a seemingly simple question: Is a carbonated beverage called soda, pop or coke?

The Atlantic created its own version of the famous 2003 Harvard Dialect Survey, in which former Harvard professor Bert Vaux polled thousands of Americans about how they pronounce certain words.

The Atlantic recreated the project by calling people across the country and asking them a few of Vaux’s questions. Then they layered the answers with North Carolina State University graduate student Joshua Katz’s heat maps .

Hear the various ways Americans pronounce the word “pecan” and the country’s divisive stances on what to call a foot-long sandwich.

[via Mashable]