CHICAGO, IL (January 31, 2013) – Covenant World Relief (CWR) will no longer use the familiar red and white soup can labels based on the Campbell Soup Company’s product line for its fall campaign because the company has asked the ministry to desist.
The red and white cans used by CWR include the same lettering, but “Covenant” replaces where Campbell’s normally appears. “World Relief Offering” also appears on the label.
Covenant World Relief had planned to launch a broader campaign that included t-shirts, videos, and other items. Karl Klockars, vice president of legal affairs for Covenant Ministries of Benevolence, sought permission from Campbell’s last week to broaden use of the design. Campbell’s denied the request and asked CWR to stop using it altogether.
The Covenant has been using the labels since 1974, when Secretary of the Covenant Clifford Bjorklund obtained approval from the company. In 1987, Executive Vice President Tim Ek asked the company if it was still okay to used the modified design.
A corporate representative replied that he had been unaware of the previous agreement, but approved the continued use because of the ministry’s good work. Since that time, the company has decided not to allow any group to modify the label.
“While we are disappointed with the decision of the Campbell Soup Company, we are thankful for the impact that these soup can banks have had on thousands of Covenanters, and even more for the impact that they have had on addressing extreme poverty, hunger, and injustice around the world,” said CWR director David Husby said.
Each fall, Covenanters have taken the banks home and collected change over the course of a month and then brought them to church as part of a special service. They have been a great opportunity for families to focus together on the needs of others, Husby said.
“Because of the legacy and importance of these banks to so many in the ECC, we are in the process of designing a new bank,” Husby said. Other promotional strategies also will be considered.
Husby said using the soup cans was as important for raising awareness as it was for raising money. “To celebrate the nearly 40-year history of the Campbell’s soup adapted label, we would like Covenanters to send us their stories of how these banks have impacted their own lives, their families, and their church.”