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McIntosh of Strathmore launch augmented reality Burns night packs - with virtual Scotsman reciting haggis toast

Published: January 12, 2021
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The McIntosh of Strathmore augmented reality Burns night packs will beam a kilted host reciting the Address Tae A Haggis directly into homes.

Launched on 11 January by ready meal brand McIntosh of Strathmore, over 300,000 special AR Haggis Neeps and Tatties packs have arrived in Scottish supermarkets to help customers celebrate Burns night during lockdown.

How does it work?

McIntosh of Strathmore burns

Picture: Max Raskin

Shoppers simply download the Zappar app on their smartphone, scan the code, and within seconds an actor will 'leap' off the pack to deliver Rabbie Burns’ famous poem – turning a McIntosh haggis meal into a fun Burns Supper experience.

The man tasked with delivering McIntosh’s virtual address is actor and Burns fan Max Raskin.

He was challenged to recite the poem in a single take, and also to interact with an array of animations that bring the Address Tae a Haggis to life and make the experience as entertaining as possible.

The augmented reality will run across three different Ultimate Burns Night In’ McIntosh packs - single (340g) and double (860g) Haggis, Neeps and Tatties, plus a single vegetarian haggis option.

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Every meal is made with the family-owned Scottish company’s traditional haggis recipe and locally grown Scottish potatoes and neeps.

Julie Nisbet, managing director of McIntosh of Strathmore explained that the idea for an at-home Burns
experience was born during last year’s lockdown.

She said: "Burns is a very special occasion for everyone at McIntosh, and we’re very proud of our Haggis, Neeps
and Tatties ready meals which use the best Scottish produce made to our tasty family recipe – ready for
people to heat, eat and enjoy.

"We recognised however that the missing component in 2021 would be friends, family and all the fun of an actual Burns supper.

"Thanks to a brilliant performance from Max and some very clever technology, we are delighted to launch our AR version for both new and loyal shoppers across Scotland.

"We hope it raises the spirits of the thousands of people around the country who’ll be missing out on their usual Burns celebrations this year."

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Max Raskin has been working in acting since 2017, appearing most recently in the BBC’s Armchair Detectives and in adverts for Visit Scotland, as well as being a well-known host for events within the Scottish drinks industry.

Commenting on his new role bringing Burns to the homes of thousands of Scots, he said: "When I was young my family owned the Inn on the Green in Glasgow which was famed for its Burns night events, and from there my love of celebrating Burns has only grown.

"An AR shoot is a first for me so I’m excited to see myself on pack, though I think my mum is even more excited!

"The address had to be done in one take, so we ended up doing 50 just to make sure we had the perfect version.

"But it was great fun. I don’t think I could ever get bored of reciting Burns."

McIntosh of Strathmore Ultimate Burns Night In packs are available across Scotland in Asda, Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Lidl and Aldi.

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Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related.

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