This is a very old entry — images are small, formatting is off.
Established in 1946, Pilgrim’s Pride is the largest producer of chicken — sold at grocery stores in fresh, fully cooked, ready to cook, and frozen varieties — in the United States (second in the world), processing over 38 million chickens a week. Currently ranked at 317 in the Fortune 500, Pilgrim’s Pride employs over 41,000 people across the United States, with headquarters in Pittsburg, Texas. They are also suppliers to KFC. Less flatteringly, they filed for bankruptcy in 2008 and exited in late 2009. Last November they started introducing a new logo and packaging and this year it is in full roll-out. The brand positioning and identity was designed by Addison Whitney.
Work on the brand re-launch began in late 2009 after consumer surveys supported the need to reposition the Pilgrim’s brand to make it more relevant with today’s shoppers. Leveraging that extensive research to identify what is critical to the chicken purchasing process, Pilgrim’s closely examined what would be inspiring, motivating and trusting to shoppers. Consumer response poured in, leading Pilgrim’s to the packaging and logo redesign.
— Press Release
To complement the new positioning, Addison Whitney designed a revamped corporate logo and a logo exclusive to packaging applications. The new logo features a chicken icon reflective of the inspiring, smart and wholesome characteristics that embody the new Pilgrim’s Pride brand.
— Addison Whitney Case Study
The old logo was an outdated mess and, perhaps it’s just me, but I’m not a fan of logos with white guys wearing pilgrim hats. (I like even less giant sculptures of white guys wearing pilgrim hats like the 37-feet-tall one of founder “Bo” Pilgrim at their headquarters). But beyond that, the type, the oval shape, the banner, all antiquated clichés for a food product. Replacing the pilgrim portrait for a chicken may be obvious for a company that sells chicken, but sometimes it’s better to not fight the obvious.
The new chicken is a very nice, contemporary simplification. The chicken looks strong, proud and ready to seize the day. Far, I would take a wild guess, from what the actual chickens look or feel like. The new typeface provides an interesting, if not necessarily good or exciting, contrast of older fashioned typography with the flared sans serif. Type on a curve is hard to do, and it’s better to redraw it from scratch than just set it in the Illustrator “Envelope Distort > Make with Warp” feature as it looks like it was done here. There isn’t much to say about the new packaging, other than it looks decent and has clear information but overall a good evolution for a 60-year-old brand.