Ice cream has quickly become one of the top applications for pralines in the US, and pralines are ideal for providing protein fortification and texture, according to Pecan Deluxe Candy's Graham Kingston. "There is such massive potential for pralines as innovative ingredients across multiple sectors, and especially ice cream," Kingston said.
Starbucks is now the US champion of proximity-based payments via mobile apps, according to eMarketer. That puts the coffee chain with its 23.4 million app users ahead of such eminences as Apple, Google and Samsung.
Ahold Delhaize is launching a new department in the US called Peapod Digital Labs to drive its e-commerce efforts, ramp up digital sales and hone in on its personalization efforts. The company named JJ Fleeman president and chief e-commerce officer of the new arm.
Campbell Soup has named Roberto Leopardi the president of its Campbell Meals and Beverages division. Leopardi previously worked for 24 years at SC Johnson, where he was most recently vice president of marketing in North America.
Several snacking innovations are on display this week at the Sweets & Snacks Expo, including a new product that combines popcorn with Butterfinger candy. In addition, From the Ground UP debuted its cauliflower-based pretzel products, while Mars Wrigley Confectionery introduced a honey sriracha flavor of Combos.
Bidding at today's auction for NECCO is expected to start at $15 million. Spangler Candy, Gordon Brothers, Kgbdeals Shopping and Round Hill Investments have entered bids for NECCO's "sugar line" -- which includes its Sweethearts and Wafers -- while the future of the Massachusetts-based company's chocolate products remains undetermined, said bankruptcy trustee Harry Murphy.
Coca-Cola is using an entrepreneurial approach to innovate on a large scale, and the company is employing its Freestyle machines to help deliver new products. One feature under consideration is how it could add kombucha to the Freestyle units in the future, said Chris Hellmann, Coca-Cola Freestyle's global vice president and general manager.
Smarties Candy unveiled a new logo, fresh packaging and a smoothie-inspired product line this week at the Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago. "With our new logo, we are leveraging our authentic nostalgia in a modern way, staying connected to consumers, culture and candy," said co-president Liz Dee.
Kimberly-Clark has appointed Giuseppina Buonfantino its new chief marketing officer. Buonfantino is a seven-year veteran of the company and most recently served as president of Kimberly-Clark's North American baby and child care unit.