The Taco Bell menu loses its beloved LTO (could it pull a Mexican pizza?)

Taco Bell has received a lot of publicity for its Mexican pizza shenanigans. The Yum! Brands (YUM) – Get yum! Report Brands Inc. The fast-food chain removed the item from its menu for pandemic-related reasons (he said) and then returned it this summer to sell due to what the company said surprisingly high demand.

Now, the fan-favorite item is largely out of stock, and the fast-food chain is expected to bring it back later this year (possibly as early as fall).

If that sounds like an extended publicity stunt, it might be, but the channel will never admit it. The whole deal looks like Coca-Cola (KO) – Get The Coca-Cola Company (The) Report Coke’s New Deal in 1985. The beverage company changed its classic recipe much to the horror of fans only to bring back “Classic Coke” a few months later.

Many people thought it was all planned from the start, but Coca-Cola executives have always said that was not the case. Either way, the moves have drawn a huge amount of attention to the company and that seems to be the script Taco Bell has been following.

Now, a company Taco Bell did business with could do the same with another popular food product.

Is the Choco Taco gone for good?

While Choco Taco is a Unilever (UL) – Get the Unilever PLC report a product marketed under the Klondike brand, it has appeared on the Taco Bell menu several times. It was even brought back earlier this year for a short time.

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“We are excited to reunite with our Klondike partners and test the iconic Choco Taco with today’s consumer,” said Liz Matthews, Taco Bell’s global head of food innovation, in a press release. A year away is special and doing it on our 60th anniversary was the perfect fit.

So with the two companies being closely associated, it’s no exaggeration to think that Unilever, which recently decided very publicly to stop making the Choco Taco, wants to kill off the beloved treat so it can come back again. stronger.

It’s possible, maybe even likely, that Unilever has a plan here. It’s also possible that the company, which has streamlined its portfolio through sales and closures, just wants to see what happens. If a wave of public support arises, we could see a revival of Choco Taco – perhaps the item would become a limited-time seasonal offer at Taco Bell,

If public outrage is fleeting, the brand could actually die, or a third option could emerge.

Nostalgia has become big business

Well-known brands have become a bit like comic book characters. Sure, they can die, but death never seems so permanent and the purpose of demise may very well be to plot a comeback.

“A beloved product being discontinued does not mean it is lost forever. After Hostess went bankrupt in 2012 and ceased production of its beloved Twinkies, the company was acquired shortly thereafter by Apollo Global Management and Metropoulos & Co – who took it public in 2016. Necco Wafers ceased production in 2018 when the New England Confectionery Co. went bankrupt, but they returned in 2020, manufactured by Spangler Candy,” FoodDive’s Megan Poinski reported.

The death of the Choco Taco looks like a publicity stunt (and the company insists it isn’t, in fact). If people miss the product and take to social media, it seems likely that it will come back one way or another.

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