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Frito-Lay releases TrueNorth nut snacks

BY Jenna Duncan

PLANO, Texas Pepsi’s Frito-Lay snack chip business has unveiled a new plan to stretch business in the snack nut segment by launching TrueNorth, a line of all-natural nut snacks.

The company said that it is unveiling three varieties of TrueNorth snack nut items; nut clusters, nut crisps and nut crunches. Each contains 5 grams of protein per 1-ounce portion.

Regan Ebert, vice president and general manager of Frito-Lay North America, said, “While consumer demand for the nut category continues to be positive, the options have been limited and uninspiring. TrueNorth creates nut snacking options that range from reinventing the traditional to new twists that feature nuts as a crisp, which is reminiscent of a cracker.”

Frito-Lay has said that it plans a full marketing campaign to launch TrueNorth, including print and TV ads, free samples and free-standing marketing inserts.

TrueNorth nut snacks are available at select retailers for $3.29 per bag. A full nationwide rollout will occur in the second quarter 2008.

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Gatorade selects O’Hagan as chief marketing officer

BY Jenna Duncan

NEW YORK Sports beverage, Gatorade, has named Sarah Robb O’Hagan as its new chief marketing officer, the company announced last week. O’Hagan will lead marketing efforts at The Gatorade Co., a division of PepsiCo in the United States. She will also lead efforts overseeing the core business, as well as new and emerging markets.

O’Hagan will have input in Gatorade’s marketing across Latin America, the company said. The creation of the new PepsiCo Americas Beverage sector has made Gatorade in Latin America the biggest Gatorade market outside of the U.S.

Prior to taking on her new role at Gatorade, O’Hagan worked in general management and marketing at Nike for almost six years. She was recently posted as general manager of Nike’s western region.

Before Nike, O’Hagan was vice president of U.S. marketing at Atari Entertainment. She has also worked in marketing for the Virgin Atlantic Airways North America and Virgin Entertainment Group.

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Dr Pepper Snapple Group set to construct distribution/production center in California

BY Jenna Duncan

PLANO, Texas Dr Pepper Snapple Group today announced the finalization of a plan to build a distribution/production plant in Victorville, Calif.

The company said that the new $120 million facility will be built at Southern California Logistics Airport at the site of former George Air Force Base. This area was selected for its access to air, ground and train shipping services.

The site will feature an 8,500-acre “multimodal freight transportation hub” and a plant housed within an 850,000-square-foot building sprawling 57 acres. The company plans to employ more than 200 people at the plant, making it the largest Dr Pepper Snapple Western locale.

Construction of the distribution/production center will begin in October. The company plans to have the doors open by early 2010. When completed, the plant will have the ability to produce about 40 million cases of product each year. The company said that covers about 20 percent of the United States.

At the new operation in Victorville, Dr Pepper Snapple said it will produce soft drinks, juices, energy drinks, ready-to-drink teas and other premium beverages. The Dr Pepper Snapple Group owns more than 50 beverage brands including Dr Pepper and Snapple brands; the company’s portfolio includes A&W, Canada Dry, Hawaiian Punch, Schweppes, 7UP and Yoo-hoo.

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