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    Industry Roundup: The 10 Most-Read Stories in March

    C-store rankings, awards and future developments led the news.

    By Angela Hanson, Convenience Store News

    NATIONAL REPORT — Various convenience store chains' plans for growth were among the stories important to CSNews Online readers last month. In the latest Industry Roundup, we present the top 10 most-read stories for the month of March, based on reader views:

    1) Which C-store Brand Delivers the Best Overall Experience?
    GasBuddy, through the latest technological launch of a rating and reviews feature on its free mobile app, revealed which convenience stores rank the highest among consumers. Kwik Trip Inc. topped three categories.

    2) Wawa's Foodservice Ops Earn Silver Plate Award
    The convenience store retailer was one among eight 2017 Silver Plate Winners of the annual International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA) Gold & Silver Plate Awards. Silver Plate winners are nominated by IFMA members and industry leaders, then selected by a panel comprised of national trade press, foodservice experts and past Gold and Silver Plate Award winners.

    3) Kellogg's, Hershey's Lead Food Brands in Consumer Engagement
    When it comes to customer engagement, Kellogg's and Hershey's are at the top of their game, according to Engagement Labs' first-ever TotalSocial rankings. The rankings measure the most important drivers of brand performance through social media and word-of-mouth conversations for U.S. food brands.

    4) How CST & Couche-Tard Combo Will Change the Industry
    As Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. continues to grow and dominate more regions in terms of presence and buying power, what does this mean for competitors, or the convenience store industry as a whole?

    5) How C-store Suppliers Are Innovating Around Modern Snacking
    Gone are the days of one-sided snacking. With today's consumer increasingly in search of bold flavors, simple ingredients and all-around better-for-you sweet and salty treats, companies in the snacking industry need to adapt to stay in consumers' good graces.

    6) Philadelphia Harpist Creates an Ode to Wawa
    Mary Lattimore, a harpist based in Philadelphia, featured the song "Wawa by the Ocean" on Collected Pieces, her latest LP. The 10-minute harp-led ode to the convenience store chain was inspired by a particular beach and a particular Wawa.

    7) Altria Takes Early Cigarette List Price Hike
    Citing its industry contacts, Wells Fargo Securities LLC said Philip Morris USA will take an effective cigarette list price increase of 8 cents per pack on March 19. The change equals an approximately 2-percent to 3-percent increase.

    8) New Report Pinpoints Highest-Rated C-store Brands by State
    Pennsylvania-based Wawa Inc. was the highest-ranking in five states: Delaware, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey and Virginia.

    9) BP Makes Deal to Accelerate Its Natural Gas Business
    BP plc will acquire the upstream portion of Clean Energy Fuels Corp.'s renewable natural gas business for $155 million and sign a long-term supply contract with Clean Energy to support the firm's continuing downstream renewable natural gas business.

    10) Meet CSNews' 2017 Top 20 Growth Chains
    This year, El Paso, Texas-based Western Refining Inc. joins the ranks atop the annual ranking. The CSNews Top 20 Growth Chains report is based on store count figures provided by TDLinx, a service of Nielsen.

    By Angela Hanson, Convenience Store News
    • About Angela Hanson Angela Hanson is associate editor for EnsembleIQ's Convenience Store News, where she is responsible for primary coverage of the candy, snacks and packaged beverages categories. Since joining CSNews as assistant editor in early 2011, she has played a key role in helping CSNews.com maintain its position as the No. 1 news source for the convenience store industry. Prior to joining CSNews, Hanson served as junior editor at Creative Homeowner book press and as managing editor of Anime Insider magazine. She has degrees in creative writing and visual communication technology from Bowling Green State University.

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