NEW ORLEANS, March 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The New York Stock Exchange will officially celebrate Mardi Gras by having Zatarain's ring The Opening Bell(SM) remotely from the French Quarter in New Orleans on Thursday, March 3 at 8:30 a.m. (CST). The Opening Bell ringing will take place at Washington Artillery Park with officials from the NYSE and executives from Zatarain's and its parent company, McCormick and Company, Inc., as well as New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and Greater New Orleans Inc. President and CEO Michael Hecht. This occasion helps kick-off the Carnival season, and showcases the famous flavors of New Orleans.
"This city is fanatical about their Mardi Gras celebrations, and enjoying great food is a big part of it," says Zatarain's President Scott Bolonda. "Zatarain's brings passion to flavor so everyone can create memorable favorites like red beans and rice, jambalaya and gumbo with their family and friends – whether in New Orleans or anywhere across the country."
Zatarain's recently launched a national promotional campaign, "Bring Mardi Gras to Your Table," to show how easy it is to bring the flavor and fun of Mardi Gras to wherever you live. Everyone can whip up some tasty Zatarain's Jambalaya or other authentic products or recipes; tune into the online Zatarain's Pandora radio station for festive music; and visit "Mardi Gras Central" on their Facebook page for an application to Jazz Up Your Profile Pic, cooking videos, live parade cams, valuable product coupons and more.
"Zatarain's is an exciting brand with strong growth potential. It continues to gain loyal fans wanting that true taste of New Orleans," Bolonda says. "For example, our rice mixes, including jambalaya and dirty rice, have experienced eight percent sales growth nationally in the past year. The Zatarain's regional frozen single-serve business has doubled in the past two years, and we are continuing to build the brand with strong marketing support, increasing our spend 27 percent over the past five years."
Alan Wilson, Chairman, President and CEO of McCormick & Company, Inc. (NYSE: MKC) added, "Mardi Gras is a special time in New Orleans because all of the elements that make this city fun and flavorful are in full swing. For over 120 years, Zatarain's has brought our passion for flavor to help celebrate this event with great New Orleans food."
The bell ringing celebration will be fed live starting at 9:25 a.m. EST via Ascent loop 4009. Additionally, a live webcast of The Opening Bell will be available on the homepage of nyse.com beginning at 9:29 a.m. EST.
Visit www.facebook.com/zatarains or follow Zatarain's on Twitter (@MyZatarains) to join the Mardi Gras experience.
Since 1889, Zatarain's has been the authority on the fun and flavor of New Orleans. From its humble beginnings producing root beer extract, the company has grown to make more than 200 food products from Rice Dinner Mixes, Frozen Entrees, Pasta Dinner Mixes, Breadings, Seasonings and Spices to Seafood Boils, Creole Mustard and other products based on authentic New Orleans–Style recipes and seafood preparation. Now, people around the world recognize that to capture the true flavor of New Orleans cuisine, you have to "Jazz It Up with Zatarain's." For information, recipes and Zatarain's online store, visit www.zatarains.com.