Heinz brings baffling tomato and soil corporate synergy to Fortnite

The metaverse might, generally speaking, be a bit of a bullshit concept. But one shining proof-of-concept for a lot of the ideas that circulate around it is Fortnite because, honestly, what even is this thing anymore but a platform for anything and everything. Stuff like an Ariana Grande concert (opens in new tab) or a Marvel showdown (opens in new tab) make obvious sense as brand crossovers, but at the edges there’s all sorts of weirder stuff like a Martin Luther King Jr. exhibition (opens in new tab) and, now, a map dedicated to informing players about the problems we’re facing with soil degradation, sponsored by food giant Heinz.

The interesting element here, in the context of metaverse ramblings, is that Heinz has been a bit of a saucy customer and, while presenting this as some sort of official tie-in and using the Fortnite logo, it hasn’t worked with Epic to create this or incorporate it in the game. There’s a certain irony in a mass market producer of processed food banging on about things like this, but then I guess who else is going to do it? It uses community tools to create a brand space and push a message the company wants out there. Which in this case is presumably something like “Heinz: We really care about mud.”

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