PASTA LA VISTA: Evidence From Death Row That Brand Loyalty Lives

Franco-American’s SpaghettiOs brand got a celebrity endorsement of sorts last week when a death-row inmate in Oklahoma requested a can of the product as part of his last meal – along with three dozen mussels, two dozen clams and other odds and ends. Thus, in a variation on the old Schaefer beer slogan, the brand might tout itself as ‘The one meal to have when you’re having no more than one.’ As it happens, though, Oklahoma officials had to call off the execution (and the meal) when a federal judge affirmed his earlier ruling that Thomas Grasso – convicted of a murder in Oklahoma – must be returned to New York to serve a 20-years-to-life sentence for a prior murder conviction in that state. For the time being, Grasso remains in Oklahoma’s penitentiary while officials there decide whether to ship him back to New York or appeal the judge’s ruling to a higher court.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)