At the NACS State of the Industry Summit in Chicago this week, Matt McCourt, director of Convenience / Spirits for SymphonyIRI Group, spoke on the new products in the c-store channel drawing the most excitement from consumers.
Topping the list by Symphony IRI of the top new items in total U.S. c-stores for the 13 weeks ended March 14, 2010, was Marlboro Special Blend cigarettes. The new product brought in a whopping $229.9 million in sales and took the No. 1-No.6., No. 12 and No. 13 spots on the list. While the Marlboro brand has come out with “Special Blend” cigarettes before, but this product is new, SymphonyIRI Group noted. Marlboro Special Blend is a premium, non-menthol cigarette made with a new special blend of fine tobaccos.
Rockstar Recovery Energy Drink (16 ounce) took the No. 7 spot with $3.962 million in sales. The beverage is designed for customers seeking a strong energy boost “plus maximum recovery and hydration.” It contains only 10 calories per serving, electrolytes and high caffeine.
Stride Mega Mystery Sugar Free Gum (14 count) came in at No. 8 with $2.943 million in sales. Stride also took the No. 17 spot for its Eternal Melon Sugar Free Gum (14 count), which saw $820,000 in sales.
The No. 9 spot went to Three Musketeers Truffle Crisp Bar (1.1 ounce), which brought in $1.820 million in total U.S. sales. The bar includes whipped chocolate truffle filling on top of an airy crispy layer, surrounded by Three Musketeer chocolate.
In 10th place, Lipton Brisk Strawberry Melon Drink (one count, 33.8 ounce) drew $1.519 million in sales. Lipton also took the No. 11 spot with its Lipton Brisk Tea with Lemonade Ice Tea (33.8 ounce)-which drew $1.408 million in sales-and the No. 14 spot for its Lipton Brisk Peach Iced Green Tea (33.8 ounce), which brought in $990,000 in sales.
Doritos Late Night All Nighter Cheeseburger Tortilla Chips (2.125 ounce) took the No. 15 spot with $889,000 in sales. Frito Lay also posted at No. 16 with Cheetos Wild White Cheddar Cheese Snacks (one count, 2.375 ounce). The limited-time-only product brought in $854,000 in sales. Meanwhile, Doritos Fiery Habanero Tortilla Chips (2.12 ounce) came in at No. 18 with $817,000 in sales. This is a flavor that was discontinued about a year ago, but has now been brought back, SymphonyIRI noted.
Peace Tea claimed the No. 19-No. 22 spots with its 23-ounce ready-to-drink teas: Imported Ceylon Tea, Green Tea, Razzleberry Tea and Sweet Lemon Tea (combined $2.622 million in sales).
SymphonyIRI noted that its list of top items includes products that are truly new, rather than those already on shelves, but with new UPC codes or product packages that changed size. Also eliminated from the list are private label items, seasonal candy items and candy or fragrance gift package items. “It’s always possible, given how SymphonyIRI reports item descriptions by attribute that we inadvertently leave off a new item or an item makes it onto our list that isn’t brand new,” the company noted.