And today, it would seem, the credit crunch meanz a prime marketing opportunity and soaring sales as the firm relaunches its classic slogan in a brand new campaign.

Heinz will unveil its latest adverts today against a backdrop of record sales and rising demand driven by cash-strapped consumers turning to cheap, wholesome comfort food to banish the economic misery.

While once a million housewives every day picked up a tin of beans, that figure has now more than doubled. New figures released by the canned food giant show that 897 million portions are served each year, with Heinz beans - or beanz, as they have been branded since 2004 - accounting for almost two-thirds of the global market and outstripping sales of the next-biggest brand by more than five to one.

The product's success has largely been down to its memorable marketing campaigns, with the "beanz meanz Heinz" line used in a number of adverts since 1967.

Originally penned in a London pub, the slogan infiltrated the public consciousness like no other and baffled even its creator, copywriter Maurice Drake, with its longevity.

The slogan's success is down to its simplicity and poetic appeal, according to advertising industry experts, displaying all of the attributes necessary to a hard-hitting catchline.

A spokeswoman for marketing website AdSlogan.com, which awarded the Heinz slogan a place in its hall of fame in April 2000, said: "The Beans Meanz Heinz slogan is a prime example of a slogan that works because it has everything. It is synonymous with the product and is an alliteration of the brand name.

"These factors, combined with a catchy jingle, ensured the campaign couldn't fail and now evokes pure nostalgia."

Joe Petyan, joint managing director of award-winning advertising agency JTW London, said: Beanz meanz Heinz is very good because it has the product - beans - and the brand name linked in an end line. And it isn't so long that people tune out either, which is important."

He added: "Slogans have to be memorable and they have to be true to the product and services that they are advertising. Ronseal's does what it says on the tin' is a good one - instead of conceit or selling', it's just being straight and honest, and that resonates with people."

Mr Petyan, whose firm was behind such classic lines as "Have a break, have a Kit-Kat" and "do you love anyone enough to give them your last Rolo?", said he doubted the truth behind the bulk of advertising "folklore", such as the Heinz slogan having been penned in a pub, but that there were some true-to-life tales behind Britain's best known ad campaigns.

"One of my colleagues was once leaning over a lavatory when his mobile phone slipped out of his pocket and fell in. That gave him the idea for an HSBC press advert," he said. Other ideas had popped up in the bath and while out for an evening - but rarely at a desk in an office.

Classics lines such as the Heinz slogan are very important to a business's success, the analysts said, because they stick in the public mind and create an identity for the product or service.

The beans adverts launched today will reflect the spirit of the firm's commercials from the 1970s, featuring a young boy reading a poem aloud.

"Sometimes when I'm feeling sad my mum will read the signs. She knows the thing to cheer me up and she knows that Beanz Meanz Heinz," he will say.

Mr Drake, the slogan's author, commented: "I still find it incredible that over 40 years later, the seemingly timeless slogan continues to have relevance and brand power, still appealing to different generations in an ever-changing world."