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AMA x McCormick

AMA is joined this week by McCormick! We all know the brand that brings us our spices, but today Udyan Khanna, Macarena Flamenco Mira, and Jordyn Wilson of McCormick give AMA a deeper look into the company and one of their brands: El Guapo.

McCormick is a 6 billion dollar company that has been in business for over 100 years. The company reaches over 170 countries and sells spices and seasonings to companies such as Chick-Fil-A, Lay's, and KFC. The company is large and has many brands that categorize different flavors and cuisines, such as El Guapo, which was the brand AMA members got to take a closer look at this week.

Macarena, who is a Product Manager for the El Guapo brand, shares some information about the brand that will be helpful for the competition later on. El Guapo products have Hispanic flavors and are based on Mexican-American Traditions. The products are sold in bags because it is an homage to the traditional markets where Hispanics purchase bulk goods such as spices, pepper, and even sodas like Coca Cola.

The market for El Guapo is divided into three categories: unacultured, bicultural, and acculturated. Macarena says the easiest way to differentiate between the three is to ask them, “What is your favorite football team?”. The unaccultured group will respond with their favorite soccer team, the bicultural will ask if you are referring to soccer or American football, and the acculturated group will say their favorite American football team. One of the big goals of their marketing team is to target the bicultural group and innovate products to be more accessible and authentic to inspire the next generation of Hispanic cooks.

After hearing about El Guapo, AMA members split into four teams to work on a mini-case study. One of the popular products from El Guapo is dried peppers. Preparing these peppers for use is a long process that requires the cook to remove the stems and seeds, clean the peppers, and boil them before they are ready for use. The target audience for this case study is bicultural Hispanics and we are trying to solve the problem of Hispanic dishes being complicated by making the preparation process easy and practical for our target market. The groups talk and bounce ideas off of each other to try and solve the problem. After a few minutes of discussion, the groups get to share their ideas.

AMA members sharing their marketing ideas for El Guapo

Most groups think that the peppers should be sold with stems and seeds removed to make them easier for consumers to use. Another great idea is putting recipes that use the peppers in English and Spanish on the back of the package to help inform the consumers of ways to use the peppers. There was also an idea of adding QR codes on the packaging that links to a website with lots of recipes and instructional cooking videos.

The speakers of McCormick are impressed with the ideas the AMA members have. They spend a moment deliberating to decide which group had the best presentation and would get prized first. The winner is Group 2! The prizes were AMA-zing and the crowd favorite was a yellow beanie that had the French’s logo on it, which is one of Mccormick's many brands!

If you have already started the hunt for your internship next summer, McCormick has 10-week structured summer internship programs that are hands-on and project-oriented. They have various disciplines and the application runs through September-December. All rising juniors and seniors are eligible. Check out their careers page for more information!

Thank you McCormick for coming to our meeting! The members really enjoy working through real-life case studies and learning about the marketing strategy behind El Guapo! We can’t wait to see our members rocking their yellow French’s Beanies!

AMA members looking stylish in their French's beanies!

- Maeve Smarick


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