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NATIONAL REPORT — Companies coming together, business development and ways to connect with consumers were among the topics most important to CSNews Online readers last month. In the latest Industry Roundup, we present the top 10 most-read stories for the month of July, based on reader views:
1) R.J. Reynolds Brings Newport Platinum National
A brand extension from Newport is making its way to backbars across the United States. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. is rolling out Newport Platinum nationally, offering adult smokers "a fresh take on Newport cigarettes with a refreshingly smooth menthol taste that is different from the traditional Newport family," according to company spokesperson Jacob McConnico.
2) Couche-Tard Reaches Acquisition Agreement With Holiday Cos.
The Canadian retailer signed an agreement with Holiday Cos. to acquire all the issued and outstanding shares of Holiday Stations Inc. and certain affiliated companies. The Midwest-based Holiday's assets include more than 500 company-operated and franchise convenience stores, a food commissary and a fuel terminal.
3) Cold Brew Comes to Wawa's Hand-Crafted Specialty Beverage Program
Cold brew coffee is now available at all Wawa Inc. convenience stores as part of its hand-crafted specialty beverage program. Wawa Cold Brew incorporates a slow steeping process and is available in traditional black or sweet cream flavors, in both 16- and 24-ounce sizes.
4) Delek US Puts Alon USA Acquisition in the Books
It's official: Delek US Holdings Inc. has taken full ownership of Alon USA Energy Inc. The deal, which saw Delek US acquire all the remaining outstanding shares of Alon common stock in an all-stock transaction, closed July 1.
5) Hershey Goes Forward With Nutrition Labels
The Hershey Co. is refreshing the Nutrition Facts panel on its products. The most significant changes include more prominent calorie and serving size information, updated daily values and serving sizes, and new information about added sugars.
6) Snackification Takes Hold
Today’s consumers are riding a new wave called snackification. Eating and drinking what they want, when they want and anywhere they want, today’s consumers are forging a fresh landscape of snacking that works best for their complicated lifestyles.
7) House Committee Approves Bill Weakening FDA Tobacco Regulation
On July 12, the U.S. House Appropriations Committee approved the FY 2018 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and Related Agencies appropriations bill. Included in the legislation is a provision that would move the predicate date for newly deemed products from Feb. 15, 2007, as outlined in the 2009 Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act.
8) Retailers Roll Out National Hot Dog Day Specials
Convenience store retailers rolled out hot deals in honor of National Hot Dog Day on July 19. Pilot Flying J, Love's Travel Stops & Country Stores and Thorntons all offered special promotions.
9) BAT's Acquisition of Reynolds a Done Deal
Reynolds American Inc. (RAI) is now officially an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of British American Tobacco plc (BAT). The move comes as BAT wrapped up its acquisition of the remaining 57.8 percent of RAI it did not previously own in a $49-billion deal struck between the two companies in January.
10) Bite-Sized Insights: Candy
As one category executive puts it: “Confection is still one of the largest and advantaged snacking categories” for convenience store retailers. In the 2017 Guide to Candy & Snacks, CSNews editors provided the latest trends every c-store retailer should know.