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    Why RaceTrac Is Year’s Best Cold & Frozen Beverages Innovator

    Chain refreshed its frozen beverage offering.

    By Don Longo, Convenience Store News
    RaceTrac gave its old Numb Skull logo (left) a new look (right).

    ATLANTA — Although RaceTrac Petroleum Inc. introduced its first made-to-order concept, called The Speedy Avocado Southwest Grill, earlier this year, the more than 600-store Atlanta-based convenience store chain has a long history of providing innovation in cold beverages in a seemingly unlimited variety of flavors.

    The retailer’s cold and frozen beverage program includes its innovative Swirl World frozen yogurt concept, in addition to iced teas and a huge selection of fountain and frozen drinks. This year’s Convenience Store News Foodservice Innovators Awards judges selected the chain as the Best Cold & Frozen Beverages Innovator for 2015.

    Presented in partnership with Tyson Convenience, the fourth-annual Foodservice Innovators Awards recognize convenience retail chains who are raising the bar on quality, service and innovation in this fast-growing and critically important product category for c-stores. Winners are chosen by CSNews’ How To Crew panel of foodservice experts from the retailer, supplier, research and consulting fields.

    RaceTrac is a repeat winner in this category, having won the 2013 Best Cold & Frozen Beverages Innovator award. This year, RaceTrac’s cold and frozen beverage program was lauded for:

    • Celebrating National Frozen Yogurt Day on Feb. 6 with a free frozen yogurt giveaway. RaceTrac’s Swirl World frozen yogurt bars feature 10 flavors, ranging from chocolate and vanilla to cheesecake and raspberry. More than 40 toppings, including fruits, candies and hot fudge, are available.
    • A refresh of its frozen carbonated beverage offering with the unveiling of a new image for its Numb Skull brand based on feedback from its most loyal customers, called RaceTrac Insiders. "After five years with the same visual branding for Numb Skull, we thought the offering could use a refresh. We surveyed our RaceTrac Insiders to ensure any changes would resonate with our most loyal guests, and they did not disappoint," said Melanie Isbill, director of brand communication. More than 4,200 Insiders participated in a survey to select the new logo. The new Numb Skull brand debuted in April in more than 380 RaceTrac stores.
    • Another successful summer Sodapalooza beverage promotion in which customers could purchase a Sodapalooza cup for $7.99 and get free fountain and frozen refills (unlimited “CUPacity”) through the end of July.

    For more on RaceTrac and the other 2015 Foodservice Innovator Awards winners, check out our specially created Foodservice Innovators Awards microsite at http://foodserviceinnovators.csnews.com.

    By Don Longo, Convenience Store News
    • About Don Longo Don Longo is editorial director of EnsembleIQ's Convenience Store News. He has covered retailing for more than 30 years as a reporter, editor and publisher. Previously, he spearheaded the editorial efforts at a variety of business publications focused on mass, drug, grocery and specialty store retailing. Convenience Store News won American Business Media’s Jesse H. Neal Award for Best Issue of the Year in 2008 and 2012. Longo has won numerous other editorial awards over his career and is frequently quoted in the national and local news media on the subjects of retailing and consumer trends.

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