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Brand Expansions: Ripert to Launch Prepared Food Line (With Update)

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The new PBS TV show isn't the only new project Chef Eric Ripert is taking on to expand his brand. In addition to putting out a companion book to his show "Avec Eric," he's going to launch—brace yourselves Ripert worshipers—a prepared food line to be sold in gourmet markets. We're praying to all that is sacred that he won't become some kind of classier, French Emeril (so is his branding company), but this whole brand expansion thing can become a slippery slope. Fast Company reports the news:

"...Ripert turned to Anomaly last year to help him design his own version of a chef's multimedia-product empire. After the TV show, next up in the branding queue are a book release in 2010 and the launch of a prepared meal line that will be sold at high end Dean & Deluca-type markets...You can bet Anomaly is hoping Ripert's old world charm will brand him as the anti-Emeril. They did opt for PBS, after all."
With the respect and following he gets and the success of his appearances on Top Chef, perhaps it was only a matter of time.
UPDATE: Eric Ripert denies the report for the Dash Feedbag: "...there’s not even any flirtation with anything like that. I have no idea what’s going on..."
· Watch Out Top Chef: Eric Ripert Goes Hollywood [Fast Company via The Food Section]
· Chefs on the Small Screen: Ripert to Star in Avec Eric [~E~]

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