Canadian chain Pizza Pizza has chosen National Pizza Month as the platform to launch its menu expansion. Included is a line of 10-inch, personal-sized, thin-crust gourmet pizzas. The line will be available for walk-in customers at more than 390 traditional Pizza Pizza locations in Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia.

Fresco Ultra Thin Pizzas will feature a hand-stretched, whole grain, thin crust, as well as toppings that include arugula, cipolline (balsamic onions), asparagus, sliced potato, tuna, a variety of cheeses, mushrooms and more. Made in approximately 5 minutes, the pizzas also include a pesto sauce, home-style sauces and premium extra virgin olive oil.

"This launch propels our menu to a whole new level, putting even more control and choice into the hands of consumers," said Pat Finelli, chief marketing officer for Pizza Pizza, one of the key architects behind the new line. "Offering gourmet pizzas at reasonable prices is the right thing to do. We've kept the quality cheeses, the fresh toppings and the signature ingredients, but at a competitive price. We are constantly looking at opportunities for innovation and are proud to launch this new offering to our loyal and new customers."

According to the first Canadian National Pizza Month survey conducted by Leger Marketing, pizza is the most favored quick-service food item among Canadians. Thirty-three percent of Canadians surveyed selected pizza as their favorite item, compared to 25 percent for hamburgers and 20 percent for sub/sandwiches.

The survey also showed that 88 percent of Canadians eat quick-serve pizza and seem to be adventurous when it comes to trying new toppings. Participants in the survey confirmed having tried lobster and cabbage on their pizza, as well as smoked salmon or eggs.

"I think the survey explains, in part, why our industry continues to experience growth and a steady flow of new personnel, franchise operators and consumers," Finelli said. "Pizza is relevant, appreciated and highly personal. The way our society is going, I can only see the popularity of pizza increasing. That is one of the reasons why we decided to conduct this survey, and we want to ensure that we're on pace with what customers want."

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