Doritos Locos Tacos Tortilla Chips Hit The Snack Aisle
The Doritos brand is launching the next phase of its successful collaboration with Taco Bell by introducing Doritos Locos Tacos (DLT) Tortilla Chips. Doritos, one of the flagship brands from PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division, will bring the crunch and flavors of Taco Bell’s DLT to the chip aisle for a limited time with two varieties—one that is inspired by the Nacho Cheese DLT and one that brings to life the flavors of the Cool Ranch DLT.
• DLT Nacho Cheese and Crunchy Taco Flavored Chips: includes two chip varieties in one bags—Nacho Cheese flavored chips plus a chip reminiscent of the Taco Bell Crunchy Taco. When combined these flavors deliver a taste experience inspired by the Nacho Cheese DLT.
• DLT Cool Ranch and Crunchy Taco Flavored Chips: also includes two chip varieties in a single bag—this time, it’s the flavor of Doritos Cool Ranch flavored chips plus a chip reminiscent of the Taco Bell Crunchy Taco. They come together for a flavor inspired by the Cool Ranch DLT.
“The enthusiasm our fans have had for both the Nacho Cheese and now Cool Ranch DLT has been unprecedented,” said Ram Krishnan, VP of marketing for Frito-Lay. “It is a simple, yet brilliant, concept that unites two fan favorites—Doritos chips and the Taco Bell Crunchy Taco for a truly one-of-kind snacking experience. With the launch of DLT chips, we’re taking the next bold step in our partnership with Taco Bell by bringing the DLT flavor straight to the chip aisle—we can’t wait to see how our fans respond.”
DLT chips are now available nationwide for a limited time in three sizes: an 11-oz. bag for a suggested retail price of $4.29; a 3.4-oz. bag for a suggested retail price of $1.49; and a 2.1-oz. bag for a suggested retail price of $1.09.
Since launching in March 2012, Taco Bell has sold more than 375 million Nacho Cheese DLTs, making it the most successful product launch in Taco Bell’s history. The Cool Ranch DLT joined the menu in March 2013.
Bosselman Pump & Pantry Convenience Stores Partner With Cinnabon
First convenience store chain in U.S. to sign on with Cinnabon
Pump & Pantry convenience stores, operated by the Bosselman Cos., has partnered with Cinnabon and Focus Brands to feature Cinnabon World Famous Cinnamon Rolls and other Cinnabon items in select Pump & Pantry locations.
Pump & Pantry is the first and only convenience store chain in the U.S. to sign on with Cinnabon, according to a news release.
“We are thrilled to continue our expansion in non-traditional venues with great partners like Bosselman Pump & Pantry,” says Cinnabon CEO Kat Cole. “Their location spread, strong corporate culture and consistent operations make them the perfect partner to help us bring Cinnabon’s world famous baked goods to Nebraska and surrounding states.”
“Forming this partnership with Cinnabon is a fantastic expansion of our offerings to our customers,” says Charlie Bosselman, Bosselman Cos. CEO. “We couldn’t be more excited to team up with such an outstanding company and to make the world’s most famous cinnamon rolls and other baked goods available to our customers. We are honored and privileged to be the first and only convenience store chain in the nation to partner with Cinnabon.”
The first Cinnabon location inside a Pump & Pantry is scheduled to open on April 5 at the 370 Express location at 11108 Sapp Brothers Dr. in Omaha, Neb. Several Pump & Pantry stores, including this location, will feature full Cinnabon Bakeries, where product will be freshly baked and served on-premises in front of the customer during majority of hours, and take-home packs will be available for customers to take with them during all hours of operation.
Cinnabon product offerings will include freshly baked cinnamon rolls, take-home packs, Chillatas (blended frozen beverages), and Cinnabon Iced Coffee. Other Pump & Pantry locations are scheduled to follow.
The Grand Island, Neb., corporate headquarters of the Bosselman Cos. will receive its first Cinnabon location in the first phase of rollouts during May at the South Locust Pump & Pantry, followed by the Capital Avenue location in the coming months.
Cinnabon’s product will first be unveiled to Pump & Pantry management staff at the company’s annual Leadership Conference on Friday, April 12, at College Park in the Hornady-Marshall Theatre at 10 a.m.
The Bosselman Cos. own and operate 48 Pump & Pantry convenience stores; 41 Boss Shops; the Bosselman Travel Center; a Hampton Inn; three Pump & Pantry Motels; two Settle Inns; six Motel 6 franchises; six restaurants, including Grandma Max’s, Max’s Highway Diner, Sam Bass’ Saloon & Steakhouse and Schmooter’s Bar & Casino; food courts that include Subway, Little Caesars and Caribou Coffee; and the Nebraska Danger Indoor Professional Football Team.
Founded in 1948, Bosselman’s is a family organization in its third generation and has expanded across the nation in 23 states and employs more than 1,200 people.
Fazoli’s Enters Grocery Stores With New Refrigerated Entrees, Sides
Quick-service restaurant Fazoli’s, recently rated No. 2 overall among large national fast food chains in the Zagat Survey, is extending its brand to grocery store shelves.
The growing chain has launched four Italian entrees and two side dishes targeted at busy consumers who don’t have time at home to prepare a meal. The heat-and-serve entrees are Creamy Penne Alfredo with Roasted Chicken and Broccoli; Five-Cheese Lasagna with Meat Sauce; Shrimp Rustica with Bowtie Pasta in Cream Sauce; and Penne Marinara with Meatballs and Italian Sausage. The suggested retail price is $6.99 for each entrée and $4.49 for the side dishes, which include Cheese Ravioli in Asiago Cream Sauce and Cheese Tortellini with Rustica Cream Sauce.
These products are now available in the refrigerated meat case of supermarkets including Schnuck’s, Shop ‘n Save and A&P, and in the next few months will be at more retail chains including Marsh, Safeway, Meijer and others.
“This strategy will drive top-line revenue and keep consumers thinking about Fazoli’s even when they are not eating out,” said Carl T. Howard, Fazoli’s president and CEO.
According to Howard, the products will be marketed through print advertising and public relations.
“Having dramatically improved the variety and quality of our restaurant food puts us in a great position to extend the Fazoli’s brand to the retail market,” he said.
Fazoli’s has partnered on this project with The Valen Group, which develops strategic brand licensing programs for restaurants using consumer research as a tool for decision making. Its research has repeatedly shown that restaurants offering restaurant-quality products in retail groceries typically increase visits to their restaurants, a news release says.
“Fazoli’s is uniquely positioned to provide innovation and excitement to this category,” said Gus Valen, CEO of The Valen Group. “We identified refrigerated entrees and sides as an area where the brand could be differentiated from competitive products and offer consumers convenient, Italian at-home meals.”
Fazoli’s, which has 220 restaurants, is owned by Sun Capital Partners.
Phillips Foods Appoints New COO To Lead Global Operations
Phillips Foods has appointed Paul Opitz as COO, effective Jan. 1. Previously the president of Phillips Asia, Opitz has been tasked with leveraging his 50-plus years of seafood production experience to enhance operational efficiencies for the global seafood processor.
“Paul is the perfect leader to guide our company to even greater success in the years to come,” said Steve Phillips, president and CEO of Phillips Foods Inc. “We are poised to become an even more well-round global seafood supplier with Paul’s international perspective plus excellent leadership skills. I am confident we will exceed expectations for decades to come.”
Opitz has worked for Phillips Foods for more than 20 years, initially opening its flagship Baltimore restaurant in the mid-1970s. He rejoined the organization in the mid 1990s once again as executive chef and then was appointed quality specialist for Phillips’ Asian operations in 1994. Today, Opitz oversees more than 17 processing plants for Phillips globally.
“Our global resources and sourcing expertise provide us unique competitive advantages that we will continue to leverage as we increase sales and marketing efforts for our vast domestic and international customer base,” Opitz said.
Phillips Seafood Restaurants and Phillips Foods Inc. is a family owned business founded in 1956 with headquarters in Baltimore.
Sheetz Again Named A Best Place To Work In Pennsylvania
Altoona, Pa.-based Sheetz Inc. has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Pennsylvania for the 11th year in a row. Ranked No. 16 this year, the convenience restaurant chain is the only retailer to be included among 100 top companies and is one of only three businesses ever to make the list more than 10 consecutive years.
“We are honored to receive this award for the 11th time because it means we are doing something right,” says Stan Sheetz, president and CEO of Sheetz. “It’s meaningful because our employees like working with us and are happy to share that enthusiasm through the ‘Best Places’ surveys year after year.”
Companies from across the state were reviewed in a two-part process to determine the 100 Best Places to Work in Pennsylvania. First, the committee looked at each nominated company’s workplace policies, practices, philosophies, systems and demographics. The second part consisted of an employee survey to measure their experiences. The employee assessment is weighed most heavily in this process. The combined scores then determine the companies’ final ranking.
Four hundred Sheetz employees provided feedback on their workplace experience. Stan Sheetz says the award also reflects the respect and teamwork that is part of the company’s culture from top management to employees at all 225 stores across Pennsylvania.
“I personally can’t wait for the day when our employees are happier arriving at work each day than when they are leaving,” adds Stan Sheetz. “That we have consistently made the ‘Best Places’ list for over a decade means we are getting closer all the time to reaching that goal.”
In order to be considered for the ranking, companies must be for-profit or not-for-profit, be publicly or privately held and have at least 250 employees. The company also must have a facility in the state and be in good standing with Commonwealth agencies under the governor’s jurisdiction.
US Foods Opening First Chef Store In Charlotte
Food company and distributor US Foods has taken 30,000 s.f. in the vacant former Walmart building on Eastway Drive in Charlotte and is opening a food and restaurant supply store in the space. It will offer more than 4,000 staples and specialty products for chefs, restaurant owners and food industry professionals, the Charlotte Business Journal reports.
A ribbon cutting for the new store is being held this morning. The store is in the Eastway Crossing shopping center, near the intersection of Eastway and Central Avenue. It will employ 30 and will be open seven days a week.
It’s the first chef store in the U.S. for US Foods, which has distribution centers in Charlotte and Fort Mill, N.C.
The chef store will take part of the former Walmart building, which totals approximately 120,000 s.f.
“From fresh meats and produce to sauté pans and cutlery, Chef’s Store is the one-stop source for everything restaurant operators need to be successful,” David Schreibman, EVP of strategy and business development for US Foods, says in a statement. “Designed to be easy and intuitive for our customers and to ensure great value, Chef’s Store makes getting the right products at the right prices easier than ever for chefs and restaurateurs so they always have exactly what they need to keep their kitchens cooking seven days a week.”
US Foods is based in Rosemont, Ill. It generates more than $20 billion in annual revenue and ranks as the 10th-largest private company in America.
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Taking Select Products To Retail
In a move that will extend the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store brand beyond its physical stores, Cracker Barrel and the John Morrell Food Group, a subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, have signed a multi-year licensing agreement that will make select Cracker Barrel product categories available to consumers in new retail channels. This agreement is a result of Cracker Barrel’s previously announced strategic decision to extend its brand through a licensing initiative and its online presence.
The agreement will bring products consistent with the Cracker Barrel experience such as ham, bacon, assorted lunch meats, glazes, jerky and summer sausage to a range of retail outlets including grocery and club stores and mass merchandisers.
“We are pleased to partner with the John Morrell Food Group, a leader in consumer meat products with an outstanding reputation for quality and service,” said Sandra B. Cochran, president and CEO of Cracker Barrel. “We welcome this opportunity to extend our brand beyond our physical stores, which is one component of our strategic plan which also includes enhancing our operating core, and expanding our footprint by adding additional stores.”
“We are thrilled to join forces with Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and bring an outstanding brand with a loyal consumer following into the retail channel,” said John Pauley, John Morrell Food Group EVP of sales and marketing. “Our strength in producing and marketing the highest quality meat products complements Cracker Barrel Old Country Store’s expertise and leadership in the restaurant industry. This will be a win for Cracker Barrel guests, retail shoppers and our retail trading partners.”
Cracker Barrel does not expect this agreement to have a material effect on its financial results in fiscal year 2013. Along with the potential contribution to profitability in future years, Cracker Barrel expects to benefit from the increased visibility of the brand outside of its own stores.
First Culinary Tablet Made For The Kitchen Launches In The U.S.
French digital company Unowhy has announced the U.S. launch of “La tablette QOOQ,” the first interactive touch-screen tablet made especially for the kitchen.
Already a sensation in France, the QOOQ culinary tablet transforms the process of at-home cooking through highly interactive content from leading chefs, helping to simplify meal preparation for culinary experts and novices alike. With a catalog of more than 4,000 exclusive recipes from more than 100 of Europe’s most acclaimed chefs, QOOQ provides a step-by-step interactive guide to create appetizers, meals and desserts through real-time HD video, photos and text as tools to guide users. Additionally, QOOQ is designed to be spill-proof, non-slip, and survive the wear and tear of the kitchen.
“We developed the QOOQ culinary tablet to modernize the cooking experience and change the way we think about and approach meal preparation,” says Jean-Yves Hepp, QOOQ inventor and president and founder of Unowhy. “We saw an opportunity to merge technology and content to create a richer and more tactile form of recipe preparation. The QOOQ culinary tablet offers users direct interaction with top chefs and allows them to learn every nuance of their favorite dish, helping improve their own talents and making life simpler in the kitchen.”
QOOQ features recipes and videos from some of Europe’s leading and most celebrated chefs in their field, including:
• Emmanuel Renaut of the three-Michelin-starred restaurant “Le Flocon de Sel” (Megeve, France);
• Francois Adamski (Bocuse d’Or and “Meilleur Ouvrier de France”) of the Michelin-starred restaurant “Le Gabriel” (Bordeaux, France);
• Rouguy Dia of Petrossian’s “Le 144″ (Paris, France);
• Amandine Chaignot, Michelin-starred chef at the Parisian Palace “Le Raphael” (Paris, France);
• Guillaume Gomez, youngest “Meilleur Ouvrier de France,” at “Le Palais de l’Elysee,” the official residence of the president of France (Paris, France);
• Nicolas Sale, Michelin-starred chef at the restaurant “La table du Kilimandjaro” (Courchevel, France);
• Thomas Boullaut of the Michelin-starred restaurant “L’Arome” (Paris, France);
• Mikael Feval of the Michelin-starred restaurant “Antoine” (Paris, France); and
• William Lamagnere, pastry chef of the restaurant “La Closerie des Lilas” (Paris, France) and former pastry chef of “Laduree.”
Recipes on QOOQ are offered by cuisine type, difficulty level, prep time and ingredients, helping to further customize the cooking experience. QOOQ also offers access to hundreds of ingredient fact sheets and videos demonstrating culinary techniques. Additionally QOOQ’s personalized features allow users to input their own favorite recipes and share with friends, create weekly menus and shopping lists, and automatically adjust ingredient quantities. Users also can take advantage of QOOQ’s web browser, access to email and social networking platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, video and MP3 players, online radio, weather app, and digital photo album capability.
“QOOQ adapts itself to the user,” says Hepp. “No matter the dietary preferences, restrictions or time constraints, QOOQ is the multi-media cooking coach that can guide anyone, regardless of their experience level. The user will never feel alone or lost as they prepare their dish.”
The QOOQ culinary tablet comes pre-loaded with 1,000 recipes and videos. Users also will be able to purchase additional recipes, individually or in themed recipe packs, or subscriptions for monthly ($9.90/month) or yearly ($99/month) premium access.
QOOQ is available for purchase in the U.S. for $399.