Heinz challenges gamers to confront soil degradation in Fortnite
Condiment brand’s first-ever Fortnite game will send players an ‘SOS’ about the rapid decline of Earth’s healthy soils.
An environmental movement has sprouted in the metaverse today after Heinz announced a new Fortnite game meant to educate and preserve food sources for posterity.
The condiment brand today announced a new game in the cross-platform multiplayer game Fortnite, called ‘SOS Tomatoes,’ which is designed to educate gamers between ages 18 and 34 about the world’s declining soil health and effect positive environmental change.
The game goes live on Fortnite’s ‘Discover’ screen on Thursday, March 16 and can be accessed by entering the code ‘1877-1435-6432.’
The effort marks Heinz’s Fortnite debut, but not the brand’s first foray into the gaming world. Heinz previously worked with the game, Call of Duty: Warzone Pacific, in 2021.
“We want to connect with audiences in new and meaningful ways, which is where our consumer obsession comes in,” says Heinz’s chief growth and sustainability officer Cristina Kenz. “By really getting to know our consumers and tapping into popular culture ... By hijacking the features in Fortnite, we were able to relay a serious message in an authentic and fun way.”
The Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that 95% of the food we eat is produced in soil; however, a number of factors – including a growing global population and climate change – are putting soils at risk of being depleted within a generation. That is unless people intervene through sustainable practices, such as cover cropping, crop rotation and maintaining soil cover.
In Heinz’s 'SOS Tomatoes', players will be able to experience the tomato growing journey, from the greenhouses that germinate them, to the fields where they grow into mature tomato plants. They will also be challenged to run faster than the speed of “soil degradation,“ as the statement puts it, to illustrate the rapid rate at which soil health is declining.
The effort builds on the brand’s commitment in 2020 to enhance its sustainable agricultural practices. In tandem with the game, Heinz says it will help protect an extra 13.5m m2 of soil, equating to more than 1,600 football pitches.
“Through this commitment, we are building better soils that will not only feed our unique tomatoes but has the potential to help store carbon, an important pillar in our roadmap to aim to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050,“ Kenz added.
Creative agency Gut São Paulo ideated and developed the campaign, which will be supported by earned, paid and owned channels. The brand also tapped Twitch streamers and TikTokers to spread awareness about the game, like UK-based e-sports experts Druid Gaming.