Kraft Heinz Promotes Front-Yard Cookouts, Supports Local Diners

Oscar Mayer is blitzing the nation’s major television networks with a campaign encouraging front-yard cookouts on May 2, while pledging to donate one million meals to Feeding America.

In a separate, COVID-19-related initiative from Oscar Mayer parent Kraft Heinz, the Heinz ketchup brand has committed $1 million in $2,000 grants to help 500 independently owned diners cover their rent and operating costs.

Oscar Mayer’s 30-second commercial titled “Front Yard Cookout” is running on more than three dozen TV networks across a broad array of genres to promote the concept of moving barbecue grills to front yards on May 2.

The spot from McGarryBowen tells viewers “We may not be able to gather together, but we can grill together. Enjoy sharing a meal together but safely apart. Let’s head out front and give back.”



Each time someone uses #FrontYardCookout on Twitter until May 31, Kraft Heinz will donate to the nonprofit network of food banks, Feeding America.

“Oscar Mayer has always been guided by a sense of optimism and by bringing smiles to people at all times—especially in hard times,” the company’s head of marketing, Jess Vultaggio, tells Marketing Daily. 

Vultaggio offers tongue-in-cheek advice for Front Yard Cookout participants: “The average hot dog is six inches, which means practicing social distancing and maintaining a six-foot distance would be staying roughly 12 hot dogs apart.”

To generate awareness of the Heinz For Diners campaign, W&K New York created a 15-second spot devoid of people but with background voices that conjure images of crowded tables. The images are superimposed with messages like “Local diners have always been there for us” and “Now it’s time we’re there for them.”

Viewers are encouraged to visit, where they can nominate “a diner you love” to receive a $2,000 grant.

To be eligible for a grant, diners must be independently owned establishments with no more than two locations; legally operating with proper documentation for serving food; and owners must provide a W-9 tax form.

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