Protecting Cigarette Sales

TOP PERFORMERS Altria Sales & Distribution (Philip Morris USA) R. J. Reynolds Lorillard HONORABLE MENTIONS Liggett Vector Natural American Spirit/Santa Fe (Reynolds American) Commonwealth Brands Despite the wild nine-month ride that saw a large federal tax increase and the Food & Drug Administration gain control over the category, cigarettes continue to dominate in-store sales, accounting


Opportunities Exist for Cigars

TOP PERFORMERS Altria Sales & Distribution (John Middleton) Swisher Swedish Match HONORABLE MENTIONS Altadis USA Republic Tobacco The SCHIP tobacco tax rates that hit in April 2009 are costing cigar smokers more, but sales continue to persevere. As of April, the federal taxes on large cigars rose from 20.719% of the wholesale price with a

Aztex Buzzing Over Beer Sales

When beer sales were made legal last August in formerly dry Clay County, N.C., Aztex Fuel & Food Centers’ Hayesville location was ready to pounce, becoming the first c-store in the market to supply cold suds. Aztex, an experienced c-store marketer, knew from its other stores that alcohol sales can drive foot traffic and increase

Smokeless Sales Stay Strong

TOP PERFORMERS Copenhagen (Altria Sales & Distribution/US Smokeless) Grizzley (Conwood/Reynolds America) Skoal (Altria Sales & Distribution/ US Smokel) HONORABLE MENTIONS Longhorn, Red Man and Timber Wolf (Swedish Match) Kodiak (Conwood/Reynolds America) The effect of tobacco taxation and smoking restrictions has made it much more difficult to rely on cigarette sales as the primary category for

Brand Appeal

TOP PERFORMERS Subway McDonald’s HONORABLE MENTIONS Blimpie Burger King Arby’s Quiznos As foodservice becomes an increasingly important c-store offering for driving traffic, retailers face an important question: Partner with a with a known QSR that offers brand recognition and a proven track record, or invest the time and energy to build a program from the

Targeting Customers with Prepaid

TOP PERFORMERS PaySpot (dba epay) Coinstar HONORABLE MENTIONS Incomm First Data Prepaid services are changing the way customers do business. Low-income families, unbanked and underbanked customers, students, those with poor credit and customers that spend much of their time on the road are among those taking advantage of prepaid debit cards and bill services that

Turning a Profit at the Roller Grill

TOP PERFORMERS Oscar Mayer (Kraft) Ball Park (Sara Lee) Hillshire Farms (Sara Lee) HONORABLE MENTIONS Ruiz Food Products Johnsonville Sausage Don Miguel Roller grills, the backbone of many convenience store foodservice programs, continue to provide chains with an inexpensive, labor-friendly foodservice concept that allows store operators to expand their fresh food offering at a time

BP Branded Gas Exits St. Louis

  Several convenience stores in St. Louis are no longer carrying the BP brand of gasoline.   BP spokesman Daren Beaudo told the Southeast Missourian that the company decided to stop providing their product from its Scott City, Kan. terminal recently.   “Those who own stations that carry our gasoline brand had the choice to

Geo. H. Green Oil Distributes Holiday Cheer

Fairburn, Ga.-based Geo. H. Green Oil Inc. has raised $21,690 for Greater Atlanta’s Empty Stocking Fund, Welcome House of Newnan, Ga., and In His Great Name Ministry of, Fairburn, Ga.    In a year when charities all over the country have fallen far short of previous totals, The Green Oil, Greenway Store Team surpassed last

Iowa Faces Tank Cleanup Deadline

  Iowa regulators and gas station operators are working together despite disagreements to solve remaining issues surrounding a clean up effort for leaky underground tanks before funding ends in 2016, the Sioux City Journal reported.   The federally mandated effort started 20 years ago has been one of Iowa’s most successful environmental programs, according to

Studies Show Coffee Is Good For Health

  Customers are growing more health conscious. And, in an effort to limit caffeine, some choose cutting back on coffee intake as a New Years resolution. But research shows a cup of joe may actually improve health, which is good news for retailers seeking to draw consumers to their hot dispensed beverage bar in 2010.

Thorntons Opens Six New Stores

  Thorntons has opened six new stores in December 2009, four of which are in Nashville, Tenn., expanding that market to 10 locations in two and a half years.   In addition, Thorntons opened a new store in the Chicago suburb of East Dundee, Ill., and another location in Champaign, Ill. With the addition of

Seattle’s Best Coffee Grows Franchise

  Starbucks is pushing for more franchisees for Seattle’s Best Coffee, one of its subsidiaries, the Seattle Times reported.   Michelle Gass, who was put in charge of the brand last fall, recently hired a vice president of franchise business development, John Wuycheck. Wuycheck previously was employed as a vice president at KLMM’s Hydration Technologies

The Pantry Joins Interchange Fight

  In Vicksburg, Miss., nine Kangaroo stores owned and operated by The Pantry Inc. joined the fight against credit card interchange fees Dec. 18 by posting signs on each gas pump and placing petitions inside on counters.   A manager at one Kangaroo c-store told the Vicksburg Post that as of the morning of Dec.

ICA Welcomes Circle K, The Pantry to WaterSavers

  Circle K and The Pantry have joined the International Carwash Association’s (ICA) WaterSavers program this month, raising the number of participating carwash locations to 570.   Currently, more than 100 companies are registered with WaterSavers, a national marketing program designed to help professional carwashes promote environmentally friendly business practices.   Circle K registered 64

Kum & Go Opens 21 Stores in 2009

  Kum & Go, L.C. will have opened 21 new stores in six states by the end of 2009.    These stores have been constructed with an eye on environmental efficiency and the intent to naturally fit into the community they serve. Each store brings with it about 15-20 new associate jobs.    “We have

Muscle Milk Gets NSF Certification

  CytoSport Inc., a manufacturer of sports-oriented nutritional products, announced that Muscle Milk (Vanilla Crème, Chocolate and Cookies ‘N Crème) has earned certification from NSF International’s Athletic Banned Substances Certification program.   The NSF Certified for Sport program is designed to reduce the risk that a dietary or sports supplement contains banned substances.   The

Sunoco, Godwin Pumps Play Santa

  Bridgeport, N.J.-based Godwin Pumps teamed up once again this year with Sunoco Philadelphia to participate in Operation Santa Claus, a gift drive organized by the Office for Youth and Young Adults of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.   The drive is non-sectarian, and finds information on those that will receive gifts through various local community

Rutter’s Opens Environmentally Friendly Location

  On Christmas Eve, Rutter’s Farm Stores opened its newest location, at 14 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Stewartstown, York County, Pa.   The new location created 40 jobs and will be open around the clock. It also marks Rutter’s biggest and most environmentally friendly store yet.     Rutter’s plans to continue to operate its existing

Rutter’s Donates $204,000 to 30 Charities

  It has been a big year of giving for Rutter’s Farm Stores.   Rutter’s has presented charitable donations totaling $204,000 to 30 organizations-in addition to previously announced contributions totaling $56,500 to 11 food pantries-bring Rutter’s total 2009 giving to $260,000.   Including 2009, Rutter’s charitable giving has topped $2 million over the past seven

Quick Chek Presents Donation To Middletown Volunteer Fire Department

  Middletown Quick Chek representatives have presented a donation of $2,214 to members of the Middletown Volunteer Fire Department.     The donation represents 25 cents for every sub, sandwich and wrap sold during the Middletown Quick Chek’s first 30 days in operation, which ran Sept. 22 to Oct. 21,  following the store’s recent grand

Wilson Farms Raises $30,000 for Meals on Wheels

  In its sixth consecutive year, “Step Up to the Plate” a fundraising campaign to benefit the homebound elderly and disabled served by Meals on Wheels programs raised more than $30,000 in November through the support of Wilson Farms’ customers.   All Wilson Farms, Sugarcreek and Wilson Farms Xpress stores statewide participated in the campaign

7-Eleven Offers The Gift of Game

  In a holiday shopping season some experts forecast to be cloudy, 7-Eleven Inc. has been driving sales with prepaid gaming gift cards.   Prepaid gaming gift cards are used to enhance players’ experience in Massively Multi-player Online Games, or MMOGs, a popular activity with hundreds of millions around the world. And 7-Eleven stores have

Salmonella Found in Hazelnuts

  Whole Foods, Kunze Farms, Willamette Filbert Growers, Evonuk Oregon Hazelnuts, Harry and David, and Mountain Man Nut & Fruit Co. are recalling hazelnuts due to salmonella.   Kunze Farms of Dayton, Oregon is recalling 32,950 pounds of hazelnut kernels due to potential contamination by Salmonella, an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal

NACS Employee Teri Richman Dies

  Industry leader and longtime NACS employee Teri Richman, 54, died on Saturday, Dec. 19 after a long fight with cancer.   Over the course of her 20-plus years at NACS, Richman was involved in nearly every major industry issue and initiative, from defeating beer-gas bans in the mid-1980s, to improving store security in the