Convenience Store News

NOV 2016

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60 Convenience Store News | NOVEMBER 2016 | WWW.CSNEWS.COM sharing, according to our testers. SALTY SNACKS: Honey Roasted Chipotle Flavored Peanuts The Carolina Nut Co.'s slogan is: "These aren't your normal nuts!" And our panelists agreed, with one remarking: "They are better!" Our testers spent a lot of time trying all the varieties and settled on the Honey Roasted Chipotle Flavored Peanuts as their favorite. The sweet and spicy flavor was curated just right, and the nuts are the per- fect size. Plus, the packaging is convenient, portable, and boasts a long shelf life. They come in a resealable bag with an attractive price point of $2.49 for 4.5 ounces. These nuts scored high points for price, quality and flavor. For both everyday shoppers and the ever- growing millennial demographic, this is a healthy and nutritious protein-powerhouse snack that delivers high levels of vitamins and minerals. WINE: Barefoot Refresh Spritzer Cans No corkscrew required, canned wine is now competing for room in c-store beer coolers. Barefoot Refresh Spritzer Cans are able to go many places where glass wine bottles are not welcome. With a sleek, fit-in-your-hand, single-serve design, they are fun and pack easily into ice chests. This wine spritzer from E.&J. Gallo Winery satisfies the alcoholic beverage drinker who wants options: over ice, mixed in a cocktail, or straight from the chilled can. Our testers were very familiar with the Barefoot brand, so name recognition was a big plus out of the gate. They tried both the Summer Red and Crisp White vari- eties and liked them equally. The words "refreshing" and "fizzy" were used more than once. One tester said, "This is perfect for us at the beach." Seen as a value at $2.49, Barefoot Refresh Spritzer Cans provide a nice bridge from a beer consumer to a wine consumer, and give drinkers the freedom to enjoy wine at almost any time and place. CSN Susan Durtschi, an experienced buyer and product development special- ist for both brick-and-mortar and online retailers, is president of Past Times Marketing, a consumer research firm. For the seventh consecutive year, Convenience Store News partnered with Past Times Marketing for the Best New Products Awards. Past Times works via focus groups and through online surveys with consumers across the country to judge new products. For more information, go to NON-EDIBLE GROCERY: Tidy Cats 4-in-1 Strength Lightweight Cat Litter Cat litter is heavy and takes up lots of shelf space. The small size of Tidy Cats 4-in-1 Strength Lightweight Cat Litter from Nestlé Purina Petcare addresses the space constraints of conve- nience store operators, and is convenient for the consumer to handle. The plastic jug weighs only 6 pounds, but is equiva- lent to 14 pounds of the leading com- petitor litter. It controls ammonia, urine and fecal orders, and provides powerful clumping. This product got five stars from our panelists for its lightweight portable contain- er, clumping power, and "no dust" action. OVERALL INNOVATION: Skippy P.B. Bites Hormel Foods, maker of the Skippy brand, has taken peanut butter beyond the jar with Skippy P.B. Bites, a satisfying, portable, pop-in-your mouth, round ball snack with a crunchy center and soft, non-sticky peanut butter coating. Containing 5 grams of protein per serv- ing, Skippy P.B. Bites give a boost of energy in a unique style and shape. They come packaged in a convenient, portable plastic container so you can keep one in your car, office desk or school backpack. Our group of testers liked the size of the snack ball, as well as the texture, flavor and $2.89 price point. They kept saying how "fun" they thought Skippy P.B. Bites are. Plus, they liked that this is a high-protein alternative to the cheese stick or yogurt snack. Of the two varieties, pretzel and double peanut butter, our testers liked the double peanut butter best. PACKAGED SWEET SNACKS: Mrs. Freshley's Peanut Butter Cupcakes Mrs. Freshley's Peanut Butter Cupcakes leverage the perfect pairing of peanut butter and chocolate, making for a sinful snack that is also budget-friendly. The intense flavor duo is packed into a perfectly portioned treat, enticing those customers looking for a small indulgence. Mrs. Freshley's Peanut Butter Cupcakes are moist and fla- vorful, with a fluffy center. Nostalgic cupcakes are a great sweet treat for cover story

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