SUGAR LAND, TX: Imperial Sugar, which sells five brands of sugar to consumers, food companies, and food-service operators, has hired Morgan & Myers as its new PR agency.
Imperial, with $1 billion in annual sales, is in the midst of an effort to gain more consumer recognition as it introduces a variety of new products.
"Morgan is helping them reshape their reputation from a regional refiner and manufacturer of a commodity into a consumer packaged-foods company," said Lou Ann Loeb, head of Morgan's food and nutrition practice. Loeb will oversee the account from the Minneapolis office, of which she is also president.
Imperial had worked with Pierpont Communications in Houston, but decided to look for a new firm with more consumer experience, said Art Saxby, VP of marketing at Imperial.
"Morgan offered real experience in food and food ingredients," he said. The agency also "did a good job of just marketing itself. They had a precise, concise message," he added.
Imperial, whose brands include Imperial, Dixie Crystals, Pioneer, Spreckels, and Holly, has begun introducing new packaging for powdered sugar aimed at making use easier for consumers, Saxby explained. PR will be a major driver to raise awareness of the new packaging.
"A lot of the awareness will come from food editors talking about the items," Saxby said.
How many people Morgan will put on the account is still being determined, Saxby said. He would not discuss spending on the account.
In addition to new product PR, the agency will handle financial media relations and consumer-education efforts, such as a children's cookbook, My First Cookbook, that Imperial makes available to retailers.