Sophisticated, unique and global flavors are making their way into more snacks, and brands are also releasing innovations that feature twists on classic favorites, said Susan Whiteside of the National Confectioners Association during the recent Sweets & Snacks Expo. "In the always-popular category of new takes on old favorites, caramel and coconut seem to be where it's at this year," she said.
Hostess is co-hosting the World Hostess Donettes Eating Championship on June 1 in Philadelphia, with the winner taking home $4,000. Contestants will have six minutes to eat as many powdered Donettes as possible.
Pacific Foods has launched a massive product refresh that highlights the brand's Nourish Every Body platform. The company is making a bigger push into the dairy-alternative market, launching an unsweetened hazelnut drink to grow its plant-based milk portfolio.
Orangina has devised a packaging-based solution to encourage fans to shake their drink cans before consuming. As part of the "Wiiish Box" campaign, consumers can enter codes from special genie cans online and then share a wish, after which the brand will choose two wishes that the company hopes to grant.
With 36% of purchasing decisions influenced by packaging, good design pays for food and beverage brands, writes crowdspring's Amanda Bowman. "Creating a packaging design that is informative, eye-catching and memorable is a critical part of any product's success," she writes.
Ice cream has quickly become one of the top applications for pralines in the US, and pralines are ideal for providing protein fortification and texture, according to Pecan Deluxe Candy's Graham Kingston. "There is such massive potential for pralines as innovative ingredients across multiple sectors, and especially ice cream," Kingston said.
Starbucks is now the US champion of proximity-based payments via mobile apps, according to eMarketer. That puts the coffee chain with its 23.4 million app users ahead of such eminences as Apple, Google and Samsung.
Ahold Delhaize is launching a new department in the US called Peapod Digital Labs to drive its e-commerce efforts, ramp up digital sales and hone in on its personalization efforts. The company named JJ Fleeman president and chief e-commerce officer of the new arm.