Branded bread aims to make hunger toast

It's hard to ignore edible advertising - especially when it's being dished out by a street team with a blowtorch.

It’s hard to ignore edible advertising – especially when it’s being dished out by a street team with a blowtorch.

Tribal DDB’s recent stunt for Vancouver-based pro-bono client First United Church Mission featured a makeshift street team handing out branded bread slices at Vancouver’s busy intersection of Robson and Burrard. The front of the toast featured the message: ‘For some people, this is a meal,’ while the back read: ‘Help us help the homeless. Firstunited.ca.’ Passersby were encouraged to donate on the spot, as well as to visit the website. Funds raised will help the mission’s efforts to feed the hungry in its gritty downtown east side neighborhood.

‘It seemed like a strong way to deliver that message using the medium of food,’ says Cosmo Campbell, Tribal’s CD, adding that the toasty messages are biodegradable and won’t cause litter.

The effort was a bit of a pet project for Campbell, who was very hands-on due to the client’s non-existent budget. ‘I’ve been making [the bread] over a period of about a week,’ he says. ‘I could make six loaves a night, which took about three hours. I got branding irons made by a company in Montana.’ Campbell and a handful of other DDB and First United Mission employees personally handed out about 300 pieces of toast, using blowtorches to cook the slices of bread.

Curiously, Tribal DDB’s involvement wasn’t triggered by any involvement with the church’s website. Campbell is a big supporter of the mission, and felt that it was appropriate for the guerrilla stunt to come from an interactive agency because, as he puts it: ‘Our feeling is it doesn’t have to be online as long as it’s interactive.’ He hopes to build on the concept in the future.
client: Ric Matthews, minister of the mission and community life, First United Church Mission
agency: Tribal DDB, Vancouver
CD: Cosmo Campbell
baker: Cosmo Campbell