of the NFL's greatest receivers has a newfound career focus. Jerry Rice, now with the Oakland Raiders, has partnered with Harmony Foods here to create a new line of vitamin-fortified gummies called Jerry Rice's Playmakers. A percentage of the profits of the fruit-flavored gummy snacks will be donated to women's cancer research and Jerry Rice's own foundation, which supports the March of Dimes and Boys Clubs.
The gummy snacks are shaped like footballs, baseballs, basketballs, hockey pucks and soccer balls. The packages feature local NFL, MLB, NHL and NCAA teams, changing with the sports seasons in specific markets. The new playmakers will be sold at sports stadiums and Kmart stores across the country.
Harmony Foods also partnered to donate 3% of Harmony Snack sales during the promotion of its gummy bears to Pacific Northwest public schools to help local music programs. Harmony Snacks, Pacific Northwest public schools and local area grocery stores partnered to support local music education.
The promotion was supported by a three-week schedule of radio advertising and press releases distributed to radio, television and newspaper outlets announcing the promotion and its local retail partners. Each store featured display signage informing consumers that a portion of their dollars were classroom bound.
CHICAGO -- Storck USA here introduced "New" Werther's Original Chewy Caramel. The new candy is a chewy version of the brand's hard candy, Werther's Original. The individually wrapped candies were shipped last month.
The launch will be supported by a campaign featuring 15-second testimonial spots set to air this fall. In addition, Storck supported the launch with Catalina couponing and retailer sampling. Werther's Original Chewy Caramels come in a range of different package sizes.
HERSHEY, Pa. -- Hershey Foods was the recipient of the 2001 SPARC (Supplier Performance Awards by Retail Category) first-place award in the candy category at a special banquet in Chicago. This is the third consecutive year that Hershey has swept this award. The company was also awarded top honors in the seasonal candy category for the first time this year.
Winners of the annual SPARC awards are determined by a vote of buyers and merchandising managers from the industry's Top 100 retailers based on a set of performance criteria that merchandising executives have identified as important.
The selection criteria for the awards are: self-sell packaging; gearing product mix to maximize turn and profit; service programs designed to increase total department productivity; simplified re-order systems to speed replenishment; new product innovation; on-time delivery; meeting delivery commitments; advertising support; consumer ad programs; a total on-going program designed to meet retailer needs; and quality control.
ATLANTA -- Chupa Chups USA here will introduce three new back-to-school novelty candy items this fall. The Mobile Pop, Gum Pen Light and Gum Watch Chrono provide children with candy and school items rolled into one. The Mobile Pop is a fully functional calculator designed to look like a cell phone that also sports a retractable Chupa Chups lollipop. The Mobile Pop clips to a belt or backpack and its structure allows kids to store their lollipop for later.
The Gum Pen Light is an ink pen that shines a red spotlight on the pageg. Its oversized barrels also provide storage space for gum, as does the secret storage compartment on the Gum Watch Chrono, a real watch with alarm and snooze functions. The face flips up to double as a gum holder.
The Gum Watch Chrono retails for a suggested price of $4.99. The Mobile Pop retails for $3 and the Gum Pen Light for $1.99. All three are available in Strawberry flavor.
FAIRFIELD, Calif. -- Jelly Belly launched a new "keen bean machine," a gumball machine shaped like a jelly bean with the Mr. Jelly Belly character on top. The Mr. Jelly Belly Dispensers are blister-packed for retail with 3 ounces of Jelly Belly beans to fill the bean-shaped bowl. The packages also include a menu to help fans identify flavors.
Jelly Belly has also set some new Easter products for distribution in spring 2002. The new Easter Gift Boxes will be filled with 24 flavors of the company's signature beans in individual sections. Also new are two seasonal packages in 9-ounce, lay-down bags for supermarkets, drug and mass outlets. The Jelly Belly Spring Mix has seven flavors in springtime colors and the Jelly Belly 39 Assorted Flavors features a large variety of flavors.
Jelly Belly in Kenosha, Wis., opened a new distribution and visitor center. Visitors board a four-car electric train for a 40-minute tour of the making of Jelly Belly beans. This is the company's second center that offers tours, joining the Fairfield, Calif., headquarters.
CHICAGO -- The Charms company here announced the launch of Fluffy Stuff Cotton Candy. Fluffy Stuff is produced in multicolored fruit flavors. The airtight foil bags are available in 0.6-, 2.1- and 3.1-ounce bags.
NEWARK, N.J. -- Peter Pan Records here produced a Peeps Sing Along CD called "Peeps Sing Along: 14 Sweet Tweets," in a joint marketing effort with Just Born Inc.'s Marshmallow Peeps candy. The CD is scheduled for release for Easter 2002 and features 14 original and favorite tunes for children. A children's recording artist was commissioned to write four original songs. The other 10 will be older, recognizable songs. Just Born, Bethlehem, Pa., updated the Peeps packaging for the 2001 season.