Why Olive Garden Launched the Never Ending Pasta Pass
Olive Garden is known for its never-ending pasta bowls – still, no matter how many plates of fettuccine alfredo and lasagna primavera a customer is able to put down in one sitting, “never-ending” usually ends when you get up and pay your check at the end of the night.
Today Olive Garden extended that term for some with the “never ending pasta pass,” a $100 ticket granting its owner access to a seven-week limitless cornucopia of pastas and meaty pasta toppings and Coca-Cola soft drinks during Olive Garden's Never Ending Pasta Bowl event (which kicks off on September 22 and ends on November 9). The restaurant chain released only a thousand tickets at 3PM EST – and they sold out in 45 minutes flat.
It's an insanely good deal for consumers who are ready to eat a lot of spaghetti: with most of Olive Garden’s Lighter Fare and Traditional Favorites pasta plates ranging between $10 and $15, you only need to eat about six or seven plates (plus your sodas) to make the card worth the money. Even if you only eat one plate of pasta per meal, that's still just a laidback one-dinner-a-week commitment to get your money's worth. But this isn’t about the logistical “how” of the never ending pasta pass – the question is why go through the effort of launching such a bold and grand gesture?
By announcing the Pasta Pass on social media, Olive Garden was able to ensure that its fans – the fans that are actively following and engaging with the brand – heard about it first. Indeed, according to Olive Garden, the launch of the pass is all about giving back to its diehard followers.
“The Never Ending Pasta Pass is a fun way to celebrate our superfans,” says Olive Garden spokesperson Tara Gray, who notes that that there will be further opportunities for fans to win passes via social media giveaways in the weeks leading up to September 22. “It gives them a new way to enjoy what they love about Olive Garden and create even more memories with us. The greatest win for us is to make our biggest fans feel like VIPs.”
There’s also the smart marketing aspect: the Never Ending Pasta Bowl is consistently the most popular LTO promotion of the year for Olive Garden, and traditional marketing is always great, but a little bit of fun publicity never hurt and it’s the grand gestures like this that get airtime. By only releasing a thousand of these tickets, Olive Garden won’t take too much of a financial loss even if every buyer eats well beyond what the passes are worth – and social media giveaways will continue to keep those who didn’t score passes today engaged up until the Never Ending Pasta Bowl event starts in earnest. Meanwhile, Olive Garden is getting the word out about its event in a way that’s a lot more fun and inspired than a regular television commercial.
There’s never been a better time for creative marketing, either. This is the first Never Ending Pasta Bowl event since parent company Darden Restaurants sold its Red Lobster chain to Golden Gate Capital in order to focus on revamping its flagship through huge efforts from nationwide remodeling plans to “the most comprehensive menu evolution in its history.” All eyes are on Olive Garden during this fiscal year, making a successful campaign all the more imperative.
But if the speed at which the Never Ending Pasta Passes sold out is any indication, Olive Garden shouldn’t have anything to worry about.
Tyson Foods 2050 net-zero target with no bargain on taste
Tyson Foods, a leading global protein company, aims to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions across its global operations and supply chain by 2050.
The company supplies 20% of the USA’s beef, pork and chicken and is best known for products such as Jimmy Dean, Hillshire Farm and BallPark.
As the first U.S.-based protein company to have an emissions reduction target approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), this ambition, in conjunction with the release of the company’s fiscal year 2020 Sustainability Progress Report, underscores the company’s commitment to help combat the urgency of the growing climate change crisis.
Food giant Tyson will meet net-zero targets
The high level of meat and diary that humans consume is fuelling climate change for many reasons:
- Gassy cows, sheep and goats are responsible for up to 14% of all greenhouse emissions.
- 75% of agricultural land across the world is used for animal agriculture. This includes land for the animals to graze upon, as well as the land used for the crops which animals eat to grow in. The amount of land required leads to deforestation.
The move to net-zero is an expansion of Tyson Foods current science-based target of achieving a 30% GHG emissions reduction by 2030, which is aligned with limiting global temperature rise to 2.0c.
As a global organisation with 239 facilities and 139,000 employees worldwide, achieving net-zero emissions is a large task, which will require a collective effort from every team member, in addition to external stakeholders.
Tyson Foods’ goals include:
- For emissions to align with limiting global temperature rise to 1.5℃, consistent with the Paris Agreement, by the end of 2023.
- Expanding the company’s current 5m acre grazing lands target for sustainable beef production practices by 2025.
- Continuing work to eliminate deforestation risk throughout its global supply chain by 2030.
Tyson foods supports accountability and transparency
“We believe what good food can do for people and the planet is powerful. Our net-zero ambition is another important step in our work toward realising our aspiration to become the most transparent and sustainable food company in the world,” said Donnie King, Tyson Foods President and CEO.
“At Tyson Foods, we believe progress requires accountability and transparency and we are proud to exemplify that as we work to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050,” said John R. Tyson, Chief Sustainability Officer, Tyson Foods. “As the first U.S.-based protein company in the food and beverage sector to have an emissions reduction target approved by the Science Based Targets initiative, we hope to continue to push the industry as a leader and remain committed to making a positive impact on our planet, with our team members, consumers and customers, and in the communities we serve.”
Tyson Foods’ new ambition, along with the company’s existing sustainability goals, is aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, which include:
Goal 2: ‘End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture’.
Goal 15: ‘Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.’