September 26, 2002
7-Eleven predicts increase in ‘dashboard dining’
Dallas, Texas – Recognizing that cup-holders don’t have to be beverage-only containers, 7-Eleven stores and several leading food manufacturers are developing snack foods in disposable cups.
“A large percentage of all foods bought in 7-Eleven stores are consumed on-the-go, oftentimes within 30 minutes, and usually in the car,” said Steve Keane, 7-Eleven, Inc. product director for packaged foods. “We know a large number of our customers turn to us for quick, on-the-go snacking options that are packaged for hand-held eating.”
After approaching Nabisco in 2000 to develop a snack in a cup, 7-Eleven rolled out the Candy Gulp, named for its popular line of Gulp drinks. The plastic cup of gummy candy was a smash hit with customers, outselling the No. 1 chocolate candy at participating stores. In 2001, Frito-Lay Go-Snacks appeared at 7-Eleven stores.
Other on-the-go snacking solutions include Go-Packs, which were developed by Nabisco, using insights from their collaboration with 7-Eleven on the Candy Gulp introduction. Go-Packs, which were introduced first through a test marketing program at 7-Eleven, feature snackbite-size versions of top-selling Nabisco products like Ritz Bits Sandwiches, and Kraft Cheese Nips crackers, and Mini Oreos, Nutter Butter, Teddy Grahams and Chips Ahoy! cookies. Hershey too is offering candy in cups with its KitKat and Reese’s Bites. Campbell’s Soup at Hand and Kellogg’s cereal cups are two of the newest on-the-go eating solutions.
Keane added that research showed the snack-eating public wanted foods that were more conveniently packaged for car consumption and re-closable for now- and-later eating. “Customers want portable packaging that is easy to use,” he said. “Families are constantly on the go. It’s rare anymore that everyone can carve out the time to sit down to three full meals every day. To save time and maintain a higher energy level between meals, consumers are reaching for quick snacking alternatives.”
Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, 7-Eleven, Inc. operates or franchises approximately 5,800 7-Eleven stores in the United States and Canada and licenses approximately 17,000 7-Eleven stores in 17 other countries and territories throughout the world. During 2001, 7-Eleven stores worldwide generated total sales of more than $31 billion. The company’s web-site is www.7-eleven.com.