Tim Hortons adds nostalgia to menu, crowdsources for past favourites

Alberta Health Services says staff can no longer accept donations of food amid the novel coronavirus outbreak. Seth Wenig/AP Photo

TORONTO – What’s old is new again.

Celebrating 50 years, Tim Hortons is reintroducing past favourites, but they want costumers to help them decide which one they will bring back.

Launching Thursday is “Bring It Back,” an online campaign that will have Canadians vote on which yummy treat of the past 50 years should make a comeback, if only for a limited time.

“We’ve heard a lot of requests over the years, both in our restaurants and through online social chatter,” said Glenn Hollis, vice president of marketing at Tim Hortons.

“They would recall a particular item from a particular decade so as we came into our 50th year we said, ‘Boy, why don’t we start something where we bring back a particular product and let our guests vote on and bring it back later in the year for a limited time.”

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Consumers will get to choose five favourites from each decade, starting with the 1960s. The first nomination was announced today with the eclair representing the 60s. Each week for the next five weeks, the company will open the voting for items from the 70s, 80s, 90s and 2000s. Then starting May 1, the final vote begins and the ultimate winner will be chosen based on the number of votes.

Although the exact release date of the winning treat is yet to be determined, the item will be released for four to six weeks with a possibility of extending its stay.

Similar crowdsourcing campaigns have been seen by Pepsico products, Lay’s chips and Doritos. The Lay’s “Do Us a Flavour” campaign, which is currently underway, has fans submit their flavour idea online for a chance to have their flavour chosen as the next Lay’s chip product. Doritos also had a similar approach where consumers voted on the names of two new flavours. The winners: Guru and Viralocity.

People are already taking to Twitter and casting their “Bring It Back” votes. Among the suggested are the strawberry tarts, chocolate sour cream doughnut, maple walnut muffin and chili served in a bread bowl.

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