Archive for the ‘Ferrero’ Category

30 Oct

Candy Hall of Fame 2012 0

NCSA Candy Hall of Fame Head Table

On Oct. 19-21, the National Confectionery Sales Association held its 113th annual Candy Hall of Fame induction weekend in Tampa, Fla. Induction into the Candy Hall of Fame is a huge honor for candy industry professionals, much like induction into a sports-related hall of fame. This year, Candy.com was lucky enough to attend!

Nominated by their peers, Candy Hall of Fame members come from all walks of the candy industry: brokers, sales personnel, manufacturers, retail buyers, wholesalers, industry suppliers, retail confectioners, and others allied to the industry.

It’s pretty spectacular to sit amongst leaders of major candy companies like Jelly Belly, Ghirardelli, Mars, Hershey’s, Atkinson Candy, Necco, Goetze’s, Just Born, Brown & Haley, Ferrara Pan, Ferrero, Haribo, Promotion in Motion, Spangler, Smarties, etc.

The generations of candy history that is shared over the weekend is mind-blowing, as is the genuine collaboration between companies and competitors for the good of the industry.

Candy Hall of Fame 2012

2012 Candy Hall of Fame Inductees

This year, 12 confectionery professional were inducted into the NCSA’s Candy Hall of Fame, including (Standing from left in photo above) Fernando F. Pujals, Fernando C. Pujals & Bros., Inc.; A. Robert Fortunato, Sledd Co.; David G. Onorato, The Hershey Co.; P. Timothy Quinn, Mars Chocolate North America; Paul D. Minger, Walgreen Co.; Philip J. Shankman, Shankman & Assoc., Inc.; Pierson Bob Clair III, Brown & Haley. Seated from left: Anthony M. Rufrano, Maxim Manufacturing & Marketing; James S. Bourne, Hilliard’s Chocolate System; Judith K. Cooley, The Hershey Co.; James M. Finelli, The Promotion In Motion Cos., Inc.; and John H. Pola, Jelly Belly Candy Co.

Also  during this weekend event, top confectionery and snack product introductions in six categories, were honored. Product nominations across six categories came from candy and snack buyers, brokers and suppliers, and were narrowed down to 30 items by a panel of industry experts. Each nominated product offers significant innovation and/or sales potential to the candy and snack categories.

The winners in each of the six categories were:

1. Chocolate: – Air Delight Kisses and Bars, The Hershey Company

2. Licensed/Limited Edition:  Crunch Girl Scouts Line, Nestle USA, Inc.

3. Non-Chocolate:  Jolly Rancher Crunch ‘N Chew, The Hershey Company

4. Snacks: Brownie Brittle, Sheila G Brands, LLC

5. Premium/Gourmet: Dark Roca, Brown & Haley

6. Seasonal:  M&M’s White Chocolate Candy Corn, Mars Chocolate North America

Congratulations to the Class of 2012 and to the new product winners. Special thanks to the NCSA and its executive directors, Steve Forester and Teresa Tarantino, for hosting this special event. We had a ball!

Here are a few shots of the celebration …

NCSA Candy Hall of Fame Reception

The “After Hours” party on Sat. Oct. 20 was sponsored by The Hershey Company. Chocolate was plentiful!


Lunch at Clearwater Beach

Lunch on Clearwater Beach with wonderful candy industry friends (from left) Hans Becher, Ferrara Candy Co., Inc.; Mark Lozano, TNA North America; Jen Harmon; Sheryl Godwin, Godwin Associates; Gloria Becher, Bobbie McMichael; Joe Melville, Candy.com; Wayne Godwin, Godwin Associates; and Eric Atkinson, Atkinson Candy Company.

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Sweets and Snacks Expo

 

Ready, set, go!

It’s off to opening day of the National Confectioners Association‘s annual Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago. This 3-day sugarlicious industry event is candy heaven. Rows and rows of candy manufacturers display their latest confections to hungry retail buyers from all over the world.

We’ve already got a “hot list” of new products we know we want to to see (and sample!) top o’ the morning, including …

Baby Blue and Pink Gummy Bears
Not sure what’s cooler. The colors or the flavors of these gummy bears. Albanese Confectionery Company‘s translucent Baby Blue Blueberry and Baby Pink Grapefruit Gummy Bears have huge potential for baby showers and weddings. I’m quite sure they’ll live up to expectations.

Sweethearts Marshmallows
Heart-shaped Marshmallow Sweethearts® are headed to love birds everywhere this Valentine’s Day. Just like classic Sweethearts® (Sweethearts is a registered trademark of New England Confectionery Company), the new fluffy, puffy marshmallow hearts will feature sweet nothings like “Hug me,” “Smile,” and “Be Mine.” Manufactured by the Spangler Candy Company, the hearts will come in sweet little 1.6-ounce pink boxes and an assortment of flavors (Strawberry, Grape, Green Apple, and Blue Raspberry). Think of the possibilities for dressing up cupcakes, cookies, cake pops, Rice Krispie Treats, S’mores, ice cream, hot cocoa … oh my!

Astro Pops
Two years after acquiring the retired Astro Pop brand from the Spangler Candy Company, Leaf Brands, LLC is bringing the classic Cherry, Passion Fruit, and Pineapple-flavored rocket pops back to life in two sizes: original 1 oz. for mass merchants, and 1.5 oz. for smaller retailers. To ensure that the 2012 Astro Pop was made exactly the way everyone remembered it—down to the wax and clear wrapper—Leaf Brands enlisted the help of its Facebook friends. Based on product photos, it looks spot on.

In other Leaf Brands news, the company now owns the rights to Bonkers and Wacky Wafers, so be on the lookout for those two classic comebacks in 2013.

 

Justin’s All-Natural Candy Bars
According to Justin’s press info, the company’s new All-natural Candy Bar line (including Milk Chocolate Peanut, Dark Chocolate Peanut, and Milk Chocolate Almond) contains “25% less sugar, 50% more protein, and 100% more fiber than the leading conventional candy bar, Snickers®.” Beyond that, Justin’s “uses only all-natural and organic ingredients, has no hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup, preservatives or trans fats, and is also gluten free.”

Um, that’s a mouthful. How can you not be curious enough to give these a road test?

 

DOVE Cookies and Crème Bars and Promises
Coming September 2012: DOVE® Silky Smooth Cookies & Crème Bars and Promises from Mars Chocolate North America. It’s sweet and creamy white chocolate and crunch chocolate cookie bits under the DOVE umbrella. Enough said.

 

Wild Ophelia Candy Bars
Katrina Markoff, the brainchild behind Vosges Haut-Chocolat, has a new venture, Wild Ophelia: Taking an American Road Trip Through Chocolate. Her latest line of exotic dark and milk chocolate bars are smaller than traditional Vosges bars (2 oz. vs. 3 oz.), and less expensive ($4.50-ish vs. $7.50-ish).

Wild Ophelia exhibited at last year’s Sweets & Snacks Expo, but with only five bars. This year, the brand has blossomed into nine bars, including Peanut Butter & Banana, Salted Chowchilla Almond, Smokehouse BBQ Potato Chips, Sweet & Crispy Caramel Corn, Beef Jerky, Southern Hibiscus Peach, New Orleans Chili, Mount Sequoia Granola, and  Sweet Cherry Pecan. BBQ potato chips blended with dark chocolate sounds both disgusting and inviting. Must try!

 

Blue Raspberry and Wild Cherry Bonomo Turkish Taffy
The Warrell Corporation brought Bonomo Turkish Taffy out of retirement two years ago. This year, Warrell is expanding its nostalgic and incredibly chewy (the last time I sampled Bonomo Turkish Taffy, I lost a filling) taffy line with two new flavors: Blue Raspberry and Wild Cherry. Given the popularity of Cherry and Blue Raspberry Airheads, these flavors are a pretty safe bet.

 

Tic Tac Cinnamon Spice
Because I am one of the few humans on the planet who likes “Close-Up Cinnamon Red Gel Toothpaste,” I have a hunch, I’ll like Ferrero U.S.A.‘s new Cinnamon Spice Tic Tacs with “sweet, warm flavor.” They’ve got great color for the holidays and each tiny piece is less than 2 calories. Hello stocking stuffer.

If you’re on the Sweets & Snacks show floor today, let us know. We’d love to meet you!

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Last week, a friend told me that Skittles has more than 8 million Facebook fans. I checked this Saturday, and sure enough, Skittles has 8,682,144 friends. When I checked again last night, Skittles was up to 8,727,245 friends. That’s 45,101 friends joining the party in 48 hours.

Hmmmm. This made me wonder how many Facebook friends other top US candy brands have amassed … and what it would look like if I matched up the 25 best-selling candy brands in the US with each brand’s number of Facebook friends. My unscientific results may startle you.

Sales Rank*      Brand (Manufacturer)              Facebook Fans

25                       Ice Breakers (Hershey)              21,051

24                       Orbit White (Mars)                     566,854

23                       Dentyne Ice (Kraft)                     7,343 (Canada)

22                       Tic Tac (Ferrero)                         933,074

21                       Hershey’s Kisses (Hershey)       84,532

20                       Trident White (Kraft)                   (see Trident, No. 6 spot)

19                        Butterfinger (Nestle)                  527,262

18                        Milky Way (Mars)                       none found

17                        Starburst (Mars)                         3,971,587

16                        3 Musketeers (Mars)                  126, 713

15                        Dove (Mars)                               38,476

14                        Skittles (Mars)                            8,720,108

13                        Twizzlers (Hershey)                   54,829

12                        Twix (Mars)                                984,655

11                        Eclipse (Mars)                            none found

10                        Extra (Mars)                               95,879

9                          Kit Kat (Hershey)                       889,183

8                          Stride (Kraft)                              689,771

7                          5 (Mars)                                     1,462,127

6                          Trident (Kraft)                            329,249

5                          Orbit (Mars)                               566,851

4                          Snickers (Mars)                         596,860

3                          Hershey’s                                   1,014,925

2                          Reese’s PB Cups (Hershey’s)   3,515,716

1                          M&M’s (Mars)                            1,152,646

(*Sales Rank based on retail sales data from Symphony IRI Group, a Chicago-based market research firm for the 52 weeks that ended on Sept. 6, 2009. Data collected from supermarkets, drugstores, gas/C-stores and mass market retailers, excluding Walmart.)

Extrapolating from my “research,” Facebook friends and product sales don’t really correlate. Skittles is by far the most popular US candy brand on Facebook, but it’s not in the top 10 for sales. Tic Tac has close to 1 million friends, but the itty-bitty mints rank 22 out of 25 for sales. Even so, it’s interesting to see which brands are using Facebook as a major marketing platform, and which are not.

I am always a fan of the underdog, so if Mars does decide to create a Facebook page for Milk Way, I want to be the first BFF.

What candy brands have you “friended”?

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