Archives for 2008

Getting Back to Beer

America’s changing demographic will continue to add new contours to the beer category, and that has some operators optimistic that beer could experience strong spring and summer selling seasons. The major breweries are expected to introduce products that target health-conscious consumers. For example, SABMiller this month will begin test-marketing its Miller Lite Brewers Collection, consisting

Making It in the Marketplace

Driving business with new products is hardly a novel idea, but it’s also one that convenience store retailers rarely use to their advantage, said David Bishop, a partner with research and consulting firm Willard Bishop in Barrington, Ill. When retailers actively participate in the process of bringing a new product to the marketplace by helping

Bypassing the Interchange

Alot has changed on the credit card fee front since last year’s NACS/Convenience Store Decisions Webcast, but retailers are still faced with the daunting challenge of finding creative ways to bypass the high interchange fees that plague the c-store industry. The industry’s efforts to battle these fees is getting attention, fostering the hope that real

Michelada, Anyone?

Chelada, Anheuser-Busch’s new Clamato and beer beverage, isn’t really new at all. A variation of a beverage called Michelada, it belongs to a genre of drinks known in Spanish as cerveza preparada, which means prepared beer—a drink category that’s been around since at least the 1940’s in Mexico. One version of Chelada’s origins is that

Pivotal Year for Beer

What’s brewing in the beer category? A combination of higher prices, smaller crops, tighter dollars and expanded ethnic offerings may well make 2008 a memorable one for convenience store operators. A variety of forces are pushing and pulling the beer category in several directions. For instance, the higher prices of items like cigarettes and gasoline

Building New Relationships

Anyone who’s been in the industry as long as Dennis Lane is more than supremely qualified to help other retailers cope successfully with the changing c-store landscape. Lane—who was elected last November to head the 2,000-member National Coalition of 7-Eleven Franchise Owners Association after serving for the past several years as vice chair of merchandising

Convenience Store Retailers Stepping Up Tobacco Lobbying Efforts

States are effectively cutting their own throats by continually hiking excise taxes on tobacco products–chasing away revenue, encouraging criminal behavior and unfairly penalizing smokers and retailers–and it’s up to the c-store industry to help them understand that. In fact many operators and state associations already are fighting the good fight by lobbying legislators, educating consumers,

Building a Solid Foundation

The most extraordinary structure is only as strong as it’s weakest link. The same principle applies in business. The higher up the leadership chain that weakness exists the more likely the organization is to crumble. That’s why the companies that are succeeding in the market these days are controlled by innovators that aren’t afraid to

The Building Blocks of Foodservice

Experts have long espoused the theory that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It’s a supposition that foodservice purveyors across the retail spectrum are clinging to as they revamp their foodservice programs focused on upscale coffee programs and product portability. NACS’ 2007 State of the industry numbers show the food category is

Technologies to Watch: Google and VoIP

Two of the most impressive technologies on display at last November’s NACS Show promise to enhance the convenience value proposition for customers and storeowners alike. The first of these comes to the marketplace courtesy of a strategic partnership between Gilbarco Veeder-Root and Google. It will allow customers fueling their vehicles at stations using Gilbarco’s Encore

Dealing with a Data Landslide

There was a time not so long ago when a vendor would roll boxes of product into a convenience store, plant them on the floor, flash an invoice for the cashier’s signature and then leave with the expectation that the store would sell the product–at least, some of it–by the next delivery date. Thanks to

Whole Grain Pop-Tarts

Moms seek foods that are great tasting, fun and popular among kids, yet also good for them. They can search no further. Kellogg Co.’s Pop-Tarts Toaster Pastries with One Serving of Whole Grain are the newest Pop-Tarts that deliver whole grain and fiber moms demand with the great Pop-Tarts’ taste kids love. Kellogg’s research shows

Store Automation Can Benefit HR

While scanning is a critical part of a convenience store’s electronic accounting system, the system has the potential to do much more, including contributions in the area of human resources. According to Greg Gilkerson, president of Professional Datasolutions Inc. (PDI), a McLane-owned software and service provider to convenience stores and petroleum wholesalers, the system can

Extreme Security

Extreme CCTV releases the new EX85, the pinnacle of today’s most advanced imaging technologies, combining dual CMOS megapixel sensors, IP infrared imaging design and Black Diamond night vision technology. The result is the most advanced level of imaging performance for today’s critical security applications: the amazing detail of 3.1 million color pixels by day and

Earning its Wings

Pilgrim’s Pride Foodservice has added to its line of best-selling wings with the introduction of new Pierce Chicken Boneless Wing Dings and Boneless Wing-Zings. "By offering our most popular brand of wings in both bone-in and boneless varieties, we’re helping operators appeal to consumers who might not normally eat wings," said Keith Arnold, vice president

Hand-Made Burritos

Pierre Foods introduces new additions to the El puesto de Pedro line of Mexican specialties. These new hand-made burritos are designed with the vending business in mind. Pierre’s El puesto de Pedro burritos are hand-wrapped for authentic quality and feature color-code packaging designed to meet the unique merchandising requirements of the vending market. The line

Raising the Bar on Automotive Accessories

Bar’s Leaks introduces Head Gasket Fix, the first chemical solution to permanently repair head gasket and other major cooling system leaks simply by adding it directly to the radiator where it mixes with existing antifreeze/coolant. No flushing is required. Head Gasket Fix is effective in all gasoline and diesel engines. Bar’s Leaks Head Gasket Fix

Fluorescent Lighting Fixtures

Retailers needing to replace broken, missing or yellowed plastic light fixture lenses, should check with Fluorolite Plastics Inc., to view its new line of custom manufactured plastic replacement wraparound diffuser lenses to fit virtually all fluorescent lighting fixtures, both new and discontinued. Fluorolite Wraps are custom thermoformed from plastic sheet into a one-piece lens that

Wrapped and Ready

Lettieri’s has launched its newest grab-n-go lunch specialty item, Meatball Wrapz. The sandwich combines the demand for a high quality specialty sub with the need for portability to accommodate the consumer’s busy lifestyle. Greg Dornbach, senior vice president of sales and marketing, said the new Meatball Wrapz was designed to deliver a slightly spicy meatball

What VoIP Can Do For You

Even if managing phone calls isn’t a top priority, c-store owners should consider the advantages that a voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) system can provide. In addition to providing freedom from escalating phone company bills forever, VoIP can make tasks easier and provide services that may be harder to get or more expensive using a

New York State of Mind

AriZona Beverages, a category leader in ready-to-drink teas, has added All City NRG to it’s line of green tea based energy drinks. All City NRG is a non-carbonated, completely balanced blend of vitamins, minerals and herbs and contains no preservatives, no artificial colors and no artificial flavors. By combining the goodness of Green Tea with

In the FastLane

Many consumers have grown to appreciate and even expect self-checkout to help reduce their wait time at the front of the store. Now, retailers who have deployed NCR FastLane self-checkout can extend its familiar convenience to shoppers in other parts of the store, thanks to a new solution from NCR Corp. NCR’s FastLane Order and

Ice Cream Float in a Bottle

More than 110 years after the ice cream float was first consumed, A&W and Sunkist Floats are being introduced to recreate all the rich creamy frothiness of a real ice cream float in a bottle. A&W and Sunkist Floats–first-of-their-kind, float-like beverages–deliver a real float experience without all of the fuss. Available in convenient 11.5-ounce, vintage

Widescreen Display

VeriFone Holdings Inc. has introduced MX860, the newest member of the highly successful MX800 series that provides retailers with multimedia capabilities in a secure payment system that now combines widescreen, video-game quality resolution and impact with tactile keys for disability compliance requirements. The MX860 supports the same impressive feature set as existing MX800 series products

Kemps Fresh Milk with MEG-3

Ocean Nutrition Canada Ltd. (ONC), supplier of MEG-3 brand Omega-3 EPA/DHA food and dietary supplement ingredients, launched two new milk products, Kemps Plus Healthy Lifestyle and Kemps Plus Healthy Kids, containing the MEG-3 EPA/DHA ingredient. Kemps is the first company to launch a fresh milk product in North America containing the MEG-3 Omega-3 healthy food

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