dunkin in packaging deal

Distribution deal with P&G makes the coffee available at chains like Wal-Mart, Kroger and CVS.

As part of a branding strategy that was successful for Starbucks, packaged Dunkin’ Donuts coffee will be sold by the likes of Wal-Mart, Kroger and CVS in a bid to get customers to brew the brand at home. Procter & Gamble will distribute the bags — in both whole bean and ground varieties — beginning next week.

To support that growth, Dunkin’ and P&G say they’ve lined up 40,000 grocery and other retail stores nationwide to launch packaged coffee, according to an Associated Press report.

The retail distribution deal fits in with Dunkin’s strategic growth plans. It will expose the New England-bred coffee brand to new customers in the West and South where Dunkin’ is expanding, with plans to triple U.S. stores to 15,000 by 2020.

Although some industry experts say the market for packaged coffee sipped at home isn’t as robust as it is for java sold at restaurants and kiosks, Dunkin’ and P&G believe there’s plenty of demand.

“If you’re going to be accessible, you have to be in both places,” Robert Rodriguez, Dunkin’s brand president, said. “If our numbers are correct, this is the logical extension for us and our brand.”

The deal pairs Canton-Mass.-based Dunkin’, a 57-year-old chain with 5,400 U.S. stores and 1,800 overseas outlets, with the world’s largest consumer-products firm. Some of P&G’s products include Folgers and Millstone coffee.

P&G will roast the Dunkin’s packaged coffee according to Dunkin’s specifications and be responsible for distribution as well as a national marketing campaign based on the coffee shop chain’s current “America runs on Dunkin’” theme, the report said.

css.php