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Kraft Foods launches first downloadable mobile app

Kraft Foods, the world's No. 2 food company, has launched a new iPhone and iPod touch application that offers consumers access to food and meal-planning ideas.

Called the iFood Assistant, the app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store for installation on any iPhone or iPod touch. The app targets consumers on the go looking for recipes.

"Our goal is to help make consumers' lives easier by helping them find the perfect food idea for any occasion, create quick shopping lists and find the nearest grocery store -- all just a finger-tap away," said Ed Kaczmarek, director of innovation for new services at Kraft.

The Northfield, IL-based company is known for its Kraft cheeses and dressings, Maxwell House coffees, Oscar Mayer meats, Philadelphia cream cheeses, Orea and LU cookies, Toblerone chocolates and Tang powdered beverages.

Kraft worked with interactive agency Genex to create this iPhone app. Genex is part of magazine publisher Meredith Corp.

The iFood Assistant includes more than 7,000 tested, searchable recipes with detailed instructions and video demonstrations and an alternative horizontal view to follow along while cooking.

App users can review comments posted on the recipes and share with others.

Consumers can also create shopping lists with nearby store recommendations and add custom ingredients.

Finally, the app offers tips and shortcuts such as "Dinner Tonight" and "Recipe of the Day" that feature daily recipes.

Kraft has previously done some testing with mobile and recipes. But this is its first downloadable mobile application.

"Kraft has done some testing around SMS and text messaging in the past, but we found there were limitations in how we could engage with consumers," Mr. Kaczmarek said.

"We saw an opportunity to deliver a more robust experience through the iPhone platform," he said.

"IFood Assistant enables consumers to tap into our content and tools anytime and anywhere it's convenient for them."

The iFood Assistant costs 99 cents to download from the Apple App Store on the iPhone or iPod touch or online at

Genex developed an agnostic platform to let Kraft prospective partners join in with content and tools.

Founded in 1995, Genex also serves clients such as Cessna Aircraft, Realogy, American Honda Motor Co., ING and Principal Financial Group.

The Kraft mobile app is a response to an opportunity born out of a challenge for today's time-starved consumer.

"Our consumers lead increasingly busy lives, and mealtime is a constant challenge," Mr. Kaczmarek said.

"Whether you're in the store, in the kitchen or on the go, iFood Assistant provides the information people need to make food planning and meal preparation quick, easy and delicious and fun," he said.