$3 Reloadable Prepaid Cards

nFinanSe Inc. has launch its $3 Reloadable Prepaid Discover Cards at Memphis-Tenn.-based Fred’s Hometown Discount Stores, a regional chain of stores located in the Southeast and Midwest. The cards sell for just $3 and the reload fee and monthly maintenance fee are only $2.95, the ATM withdrawal fee is an industry low 99 cents, and

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New “Omlete” Wrap

Land Mark Products, which provides companies with customized food manufacturing solutions introduces the Day’ N Night Bites’ “Omlete” Wrap, a way to enjoy breakfast on-the-go without the mess. Instead of using crumbly scrambled eggs, the traditional egg-based breakfast wrap is more contained and far less likely to fall out of the tortilla. Day N’ Night

Super Bowl Promotion

Diamond Foods Inc. is offering a promotion across its snack portfolio called Snack Bowl XLV. Consumers will submit applications online and encourage their friends to vote for them utilizing unique tools, such as a Facebook video application. The entrant receiving the most votes will win a trip to the Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement

Inside Look at Store Activity

Series2k has released S2k Realtime Center, a realtime reporting module to complement its Series2K Back Office Management System. The S2k Realtime Center is a Web-based application that allows a convenience store operator or owner to instantaneously see what is going on in their store. The S2k Realtime Center pulls information from the point-of-sale system every

Prepaid Services

Blackhawk Network, a provider of prepaid and financial payments products offers PayPower, a suite of prepaid products and services designed to help consumers stay in control of spending with simple and safe solutions that provide value, transparency and budgeting. The suite of products is targeted to consumers looking for alternatives to traditional financial credit, whether

Botanical Cigar

Arango Cigar Co. offers its “Windy City” Premium Botanical Cigar, made exclusively for Arango by Drew Estate, in its Nicaraguan factory. In 1998, Drew Estate pioneered the art of vapor-infusing cigars with a wide variety of herbal, floral, spice, and other botanical flavoring essences. Today, their Acid cigars are widely recognized for these intriguing flavor

A Moment of Sweetness

Cumberland Packing Corp. has tasked creative agency Mother New York with reintroducing Sweet’N Low to U.S. consumers by reminding people of the brand’s long history and tradition by playing up its iconic name, packaging and its most memorable color. The campaign, which includes print, outdoor and digital, will run nationally throughout 2010. Mother broke away

Chai Tea Latte Mixes

Simple-to-prepare Oregon Chai Tea Latte Dry Mixes provide an alternative to coffee and are available in three popular flavors: Vanilla, Decadent Spice and Original flavor. The mixes are easy to use—just-add-water or steamed milk prep. For added ease, each package includes a serving scoop and comes in re-closable stand up bags, eliminating the mess of

CAT Scales

If you sell diesel fuel, then you need a CAT Scale. CAT Scale Co. is a public truck scale network, with more than 1,275 certified scales located across the U.S. and Canada. There is no start up cost to join. All equipment, maintenance and staff training is provided by CAT Scale Co. The network includes

Fusion Equipment Series

The new Fusion Series features a full line of heavy-duty equipment at affordable prices, including bottom mount solid door reach-ins, glass door merchandisers, undercounter refrigerators and freezers, and sandwich/salad prep units, including the new ‘mega top,’ featuring a deeper unit to accommodate more pans inside. Master-Bilt’s Fusion Series solid door reach-ins (refrigerators and freezers) are

New Energy Flavor

After success with its Lemon Blast, Cherry Rush and Citrus Slam Xenergy Xtreme flavors, Xyience introduced Orange Fuel to its Xenergy Xtreme lineup this year. Like other Xenergy Xtreme and Premium flavors, Orange Fuel is available in 16-ounce cans and is sugar- and calorie-free, with only two grams of carbohydrates per serving. Earlier this year,

Cell Phone Chargers

Hottips is the cell phone charging system that has it all. The tips charge almost all cell phones and are available as all-in-one chargers, wall chargers, or car chargers. All multi-tip chargers include the new micro USB tip, and mobile phone brands are easily identified. A bright light indicates the phone is charging. The packaging

Saluting Family Businesses

I just got back from the National Advisory Group’s (NAG) 2010 Ideas Conference in Charleston, S.C., and came away with a much better understanding of the issues facing small businesses and family-owned companies. Whether it’s dealing with the massive overhaul of the U.S. medical system, costly PCI compliance investments that yield no ROI or embracing

Tedeschi’s Showcases Pride and Tradition

At a Glance: Tedeschi Food Stores   Headquarters: Rockland, Mass. Founded: 1923 Store Count: 189 2009 Annual Revenue: More than $600 million Employees: 2,100 Markets of Operation: Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Rhode Island Proprietary Brands: TD’s Deli and TD’s Express foodservice; Tedeschi Select groceries, snacks and beverages; and Tedeschi Fuel   While other chains

VERC Enterprises Aims and Delivers

VERC ENTERPRISES AT A GLANCE   VERC Enterprises was launched 35 years ago by Paul Vercollone and his father Eugene in 1975 with a single gas station/car wash in Marshfield, Mass. Leo Vercollone, the company’s current president and CEO, joined the team after he graduated from Boston College in 1977. Paul continues to oversee the

Tackling New Challenges

During her 13-year career in the industry, Donna Perkins has come a long way. Her enthusiasm and desire to learn drive her success. As pricebook manager for Calloway Oil Co., Perkins maintains costs and retails for all items in the company’s 23 E-Z Stop Food Mart stores in Tennessee. She also handles vendor issues, cost

Keys to Growing Foodservice Profitably

Why are some retailers prospering when others are struggling? What are the keys to growing the business—even during tough economic times? How are successful retailers approaching the business differently than others? These are all questions that could be applicable to any part of the retail business. However, the questions are extremely salient to foodservice programs

Meeting the Demand for Fresh Foods

Rx for Dinner   Walgreen’s drug chain recently announced that it will test market chilled foods at a dozen of its 7,500 stores this fall to determine if busy consumers are willing to stop at a drug store for a grab-and-go lunch or dinner. While full details of the test have not been made public,

Building a Proprietary Food Program

Ingredients for Success   The answer to the question, “How can c-store operators develop proprietary foodservice programs?” is, according to consultant Dan Bendall, founder and president of FoodStrategy Inc. in Rockville, Md., the same as what he would tell any would-be restaurateur. “You need the following ingredients to be successful, not just serve food.” They

Developing a Customized Foodservice Menu

Testing New Products   As new products earn their way onto your menu don’t forget about the equipment.   “Let’s say you’ve got a roller grill and you’ve been selling hot dogs forever,” explained Larry Miller, president of Miller Management & Consulting Services Inc. in Sanford, Fla. “Now somebody brings you a handheld Mexican product,

Lighting the Way to Profitability

Lighters can be an afterthought. There are relatively few manufacturers, everyone merchandises them near the front counter, liability issues have cut down on cheap products and differentiation is only skin deep. But even given the limited number of companies supplying products, lighters produce an excellent margin—between 40% and 60%—and sales have been steady for the

Outlook Strong for Salty Snacks

The recession of the past couple of years has not swayed consumers from their salty snack habits. In almost every type of data, salty snacks continue to thrive. According to NACS’ 2010 State of the Industry report, convenience store salty snack sales climbed 3.4%, while margin dollars climbed 4.8%. Since 2007, sales of salty snacks

Elevating Snack Sales

The weak economy has not taken much of a bite out of meat snack sales. Americans are loathe to sacrifice edible indulgences, even in times of financial crisis. All three NACS snacks categories—salty, packaged sweet and alternative—showed increases in average sales per store from 2008 to 2009, and showed gross-margin percentage and average gross-margin-dollar-per-store gains.

Growing Milk and Dairy Sales

Milk’s Bumpy Ride   In Mintel International’s new “Milk in the U.S.” report, senior analyst David Browne predicted a “bumpy ride” for the $11-billion milk market. Few categories, he noted, are as volatile as milk, which is reflected in the wild dollar sales swing during 2004-09.   “Volatility may return to the market in late

Train to Retain

Convenience store turnover is staggering—100% is typical, and 200% is common among hourly retail employees. Yet, in a Fortune magazine survey of the most admired companies, “the single best predictor of overall excellence was a company’s ability to attract, motivate and retain talented people.” Training and preparing employees for advancement is one proven method for

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