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New red bags filled with all-natural white granulated, brown and powdered sugar to begin hitting store shelves this month
BAY CITY, MICHIGAN – Michigan Sugar Company this month begins rolling out a new line of red colored Pioneer Sugar bags for retail customers.
The red bags have blue and white accents and feature the traditional ox and wagon logo used by Pioneer Sugar for decades. The red bags will be used to package the following Pioneer Sugar products:
“It’s the same sweet sugar in a new sweet bag,” said Michigan Sugar Company President and CEO Mark Flegenheimer, noting the Pioneer Sugar brand dates to 1906, the year Michigan Sugar Company was founded. “We have not changed the look of our Pioneer Sugar bags in many years and we wanted to create a bag that would stand out on the grocery store shelves while incorporating many of the elements customers have become familiar with over time.”
Flegenheimer noted the new bags will begin to hit store shelves in April and will cycle into the market over the next several months. He explained that the COVID-19 pandemic sped up the process of launching the new bags.
“Retail demand for sugar has been robust over the past month and our employees have been working around the clock to fill orders from our retail customers,” he said. “In doing so, we’ve moved a great deal of sugar out of our warehouses and were able to begin transitioning to the new red bags sooner than originally expected.”
The first bags customers are likely to see are the 4-pound and 10-pound white granulated and 7-pound Golden Light Brown.
In designing the new bags, Michigan Sugar Company partnered with The Food Group, an advertising, marketing, content, and brand engagement agency that specializes in food and beverages.
“Many hours were invested into brainstorming, creative-thinking, data-analyzing and working with The Food Group’s branding professionals to bring this new look to our sugar,” said Michigan Sugar Company Vice President of Sales and Marketing Pedro Figueroa. “Today’s food shopper has much different tendencies and preferences compared to years past, and so we are looking to enhance the shopping experience with a fresh, innovative look at the supermarket shelf. The new look is certainly catchy, but also focuses on our main storylines: “Michigan-Made,” “Farm-to-Table,” “All Natural,” “Locally Grown. Locally Owned.” and “Certified Vegan,” which all are featured on our new grocery bags.”
In conjunction with the new bags, Michigan Sugar Company is working to spruce up its Pioneer Sugar Facebook page, has launched a Pioneer Sugar Instagram page and is working to refresh its brand website at www.pioneersugar.com with updated content and engaging visuals.
About Michigan Sugar
Michigan Sugar Company was founded in 1906 when six smaller sugar companies merged their operations. In 2002, Michigan Sugar Company became a grower-owned cooperative and in 2004, it merged with Monitor Sugar Company to form the company that exists today.
Michigan Sugar Company is headquartered in Bay City and has sugarbeet processing facilities in Bay City, Caro, Croswell and Sebewaing, Michigan. The company’s nearly 900 grower-owners plant and harvest about 160,000 acres of sugarbeets each year in 20 Michigan counties, as well as Ontario, Canada. Those beets are sliced at the factories and turned into about 1.1 billion pounds of sugar annually.
The sugar is sold to industrial, commercial, and retail customers under the Pioneer and Big Chief brands.
Michigan Sugar Company has 930 year-round employees and an additional 1,100 seasonal workers. It is the No. 1 employer in Huron County, the No. 2 employer in Bay and Sanilac counties and the No. 3 employer in Tuscola County.
The company’s annual payroll is more than $65 million and its annual local economic impact is about $500 million.
Michigan Sugar Company is the third largest of nine sugarbeet processing companies in the United States and Michigan is one of 11 states where sugarbeets are grown in the country.