Gen Z sizzle: Sausage brand HECK! reveals new fun-loving platform

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One of the UK’s best-loved sausage makers, HECK!, has launched a playful new brand platform designed to reinvigorate the category – sparking joy and excitement in a Gen Z world.

What The HECK!, an adventurous brand experience developed in partnership with global design consultancy Elmwood, is designed to appeal to a younger audience by tapping into new trends, and create an innovation platform for long-term product development.

What The HECK!

The platform is being rolled out in UK supermarkets, accompanied by the launch of two new products: the Sausage Bomb and Sausage Rashers.

A large sausage meatball promising “an explosion of flavour” at its centre, the HECK! Sausage Bomb is about culinary exploration. HECK! Sausage Rashers, meanwhile, emphasise convenience, with flat-shaped sausages that can be cooked in five minutes – in a similar vein to bacon.

Both creations speak to the edgy and intrepid nature of What The HECK!, laying the foundation for future experimental launches and collaborations.

“What The HECK! signals the start of a dynamic new chapter in our long relationship with the HECK! team,” said Charlotte Distefano, Associate Creative Director at Elmwood London.

“The platform has synergy with the core HECK! brand but it also represents a fresh mindset – one that revolves around distinctive storytelling, and moments that matter to consumers.

“It creates space for HECK! to be visually creative, using pop culture and bright graphic language to bring newfound soul to product innovation. It gives scope for brand expansion by exploring never-before-seen category textures and wild new ideas.”

The unveiling of the platform follows an extensive brand refresh earlier this year, also developed in partnership with Elmwood.

The Yorkshire-based sausage brand was launched 10 years ago and has achieved a 60% share of the premium branded sausage market.

The company’s founders have always seen brand investment and design as being critical to the success of the business and, each year, the company invests 10% of its revenue in brand support.

Moreover, a recent brand refresh was created to reflect HECK!’s shift to becoming an established category player, to excite retailers and elevate its position in a competitive set.

Elmwood’s aim was to bring HECK! products up-to-date with a consistent, fun and diverse system that could flex beyond design language staples.

“HECK! has a strong field-to-fork family heritage, and we wanted to keep that in play while introducing a wider sense of category excitement and impact,” said Greg Taylor, Chief Provocation Officer at Elmwood London.

“Our goal was to replace outgrown butcher tropes and classic premium codes with something more spontaneous and punchy. It was time to add more creative magic to the HECK! core identity, as seen via a Gen Z lens.”

Elmwood began by working with lettering artist Dan Forster to reinvent HECK!’s word mark, making it cleaner, more statement-worthy and a better fit for the digital world.

This is coupled with a new, more stylised typography, featuring modern, conversational fonts.

The brand overhaul also dials up the brand’s key brand colour of hot pink, raising its profile across multiple on– and off–pack touchpoints.

Meanwhile, the HECK! exclamation mark becomes a central part of its new visual brand language, with a daring character and newfound emphasis.

In addition, HECK!’s confident new look features bigger and bolder illustrations, in order to pop on the shelf and create simple navigation that brings together the brand’s expanding product portfolio.

A new set of product-focused photography completes the refresh, hero’ing the range of flavours across the brand’s sausages, burgers, mince and meat-free products.