Convenience Store News

NOV 2014

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56 Convenience Store News | NOVEMBER 2014 | WWW.CSNEWS.COM The Best in Convenience Foodservice Maverik takes the gold in 2014 Foodservice Innovators Awards By Don Longo F rom innovation in menu development to creative money-making promotions, this year's Convenience Store News Foodservice Innovators Awards winners show why they are helping to revolutionize consumer per- ceptions about convenience foodservice offerings. Presented in partnership with Tyson Foods, the Foodservice Innovators Awards recognize convenience retail leaders that are raising the bar on quality, ser- vice and innovation in this fast-growing and critically important product category for c-stores. Winners were chosen by CSNews' 18-member How To Do World-Class Foodservice "How To Crew," made up of experts from the retailer, supplier, research and consulting fields. There are six award categories. Gold and silver medals were awarded in each category. FoodservIce InnovAtor oF the YeAr, Gold MedAl Maverik Inc., North Salt Lake City, Utah Although Maverik is already renowned for its adven- ture-themed store environment, great customer service and broad product offering, the How To Crew judges placed the chain at the top of the pack this year for a number of innovations that began in 2014 and are continuing and evolving. These important innovations include: • Reorganizing its physical stores and product mer- chandising to enhance the communication of its broad offering. Thus, the retailer is better able to help its customers fill eating use occasions from a huge combination of offerings. • Significantly reducing its inventory of underper- forming products to make room for more impact from its best-sellers, for new product innova- tion, and for customers and service. Essentially, a c-store foodservice interpretation of the traditional retail 80/20 rule. • Increasing its stores' focus on Maverik's fresh food- service brand Bonfire by visually and physically bringing the fresh food offer forward in the store. "Adventure's First Stop" — the stores' tagline — features the Bonfire Grill's open display kitchen front and center as the centerpiece of the store. • Bringing a laser focus to its fresh food and bever- age offer to target customers' needs and wants — all in relation to a deep and broad awareness of its competitive market. Maverik's fresh food and bev- erage launches this year include the ciabatta pizza program, "Mix-It-Up" fountain program, Biscuits n' Gravy, and the Fresh Cookie "Flash Sale." All of these new programs demonstrate product and marketing innovation at work. • Refocusing staff training and operations on improving both the reality and perception of freshly prepared and custom-assembled food spe- cialties as the heroes of its product lines. • Refining strategic and tactical philosophy and activities to bring these improvements to custom- ers in a consistent and meaningful way. All this taken together is the Maverik way of serv- ing and delighting its customer communities. In com- bination, these components are positioning Maverik to make the quantum leap from being "very good" to "great" and, in the opinion of the judges, worthy of

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