The latest showcase innovation among its core brands includes new flavours and the company says it has shared its key insights in what customers are looking for with its retail partners.
Reese’s Snack Cakes
Its iconic brand Reese’s is leading the new wave of snacking occasions. The Reese’s Snack Cakes is set to launch in December, driving excitement for the snack cake category, and potentially sparking new growth.
The primary confectionery brand in the c-store channel is helping bring significant innovation as bakery snacks represent the third largest c-store category, although its pace has slowed in the past year as the category lacked disruptive innovation.
Hershey’s own research shows that out of the top 15 items in snack cakes, 14 have been consistent since 2016, leaving growth from innovation ranging anywhere between 4-6% of total sales per year.
“We pride ourselves on knowing our consumers, and based on our research and insights, we knew there was an opportunity in the snack cake category and the desire for innovation,” said Glenn Frazier, Director, Category Management US Convenience, The Hershey Company.
Its research revealed that more than half of consumers search for a match for their coffee when they visit US convenience stores, and 59% of purchases occur before 10 am.
Better-for-you morning products
During mid-morning, people transition from better-for-you morning products like yogurt and nutrition bars to more indulgent treats, like snack cakes. Nearly 98% of store consumers stop by the snack cake end cap area and at least 50% of snack cake and nutrition bar users are open to trying new brands, said Hershey, “making snack cakes the ultimate mid-morning basket builder”.
In a recent nine-week in-market test at a leading c-store retailer, new Reese’s Snack Cakes were the third best-selling snack cake in the packaged baked goods category, Hershey claimed.
“Hershey has had great success with cross-merchandising beverages like coffee with confectionery items. These cross-merchandising solutions have helped boost sales for our retail partners and, most importantly, have given the shopper the product they are looking for, when they want it. Hershey is excited to bring significant innovation and leadership to this category,” said Frazier.
Hershey’s sweet new product innovation:
- Reese’s Big Cup with Pretzels will take the iconic Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup and stuff it with pretzels. The new product will be available in standard size and king size from November.
- KIT KAT. The brand recently announced its new KIT KAT DUOS Mocha + Chocolate bar, a permanent addition to the KIT KAT line, which features a combination of two iconic flavours – mocha coffee flavour and chocolate – layering the KIT KAT wafer.
- This year, KIT KAT brand has also unveiled other flavours including Birthday Cake, and Apple Pie. In 2019, it announced a new flavour for the first time in almost a decade with KIT KAT DUOS Mint + Dark Chocolate bar, a mint flavour crème on the top and dark chocolate on the bottom, all surrounding light and crispy wafers. Hershey says, more flavour announcements expected in 2021.
- This summer, the PAYDAY brand also saw a change in its lineup with the addition of the Chocolately PAYDAY bar. The candy bar is covered in chocolately coating but delivers the same PAYDAY truckload of peanuts surrounding sweet caramel.
C-store retailers looking to increase product speed to shelf with the time-saving capability of new product online ordering can visit HersheySolutions.com to discover the latest product releases, download optimized planograms, tap into channel insights and order new products.