6 Products to Help Reimagine Food Programs

hot dogs

As shelter-in-place and social-distancing measures relax, many of the convenience-store channel’s go-to foodservice strategies will continue to face challenges from consumers. According to the Intouch Insight 2020 C-Store Consumer Habits Survey, it’s extremely unlikely that customers will use self-serve condiments and coffee bars (25%), purchase self-dispensed beverages (21%) and purchase prepared foods from bakery cases or roller grills (21%).

That puts a greater emphasis on cleanliness and packaged foodservice items. I fact, when it comes to purchasing prepared food items in convenience stores, it is extremely important that stores foster cleanliness (60%), provide quality food (50%), provide quality service (31%) and provide overall convenience (26%), according to the C-Store Consumer Habits Survey.

Click through to sample six new foodservice snacks and entrees that have recently arrived in the c-store channel to help operators answer the call for apprehensive consumers.  

Photograph: Shutterstock


johnsonville sausage

Johnsonville introduced a new product for roller-grill programs: Ultimate Jalapeno Cheddar Sausage. The smoked link is made with fresh cuts of premium pork, real cheddar cheese and diced jalapeno peppers. The links come 10 pounds to a case, and fully cooked and frozen for storage. Once cooked, they have a four-hour hold time.

Photograph courtesy of Johnsonville

Distinctive Foods LLC

Pabst Blue Ribbon Mini Pretzel Beer Brats

Distinctive Foods LLC, through a licensing agreement with Pabst Brewing Co., launched Pabst Blue Ribbon Mini Pretzel Beer Brats, a twist on the classic pigs-in-a-blanket appetizer. Made with miniature hardwood-smoked traditional bratwurst and cooked with Pabst Blue Ribbon beer, the beer brats are wrapped in a traditional pretzel bread, fully cooked and require less than one minute in the microwave.

Photograph courtesy of Distinctive Foods LLC

Sweet Earth Foods

Plant-Based (PB) Triple Play

Developed by the Sweet Earth Foods culinary team with support from Nestle research and development, Sweet Earth Foods debuts Plant-Based (PB) Triple Play, a fully plant-based Bac’n Cheezeburger to debut for foodservice. The recipe, which uses yellow pea protein and non-GMO ingredients, contains 27 grams of protein and includes three plant-based alternatives: Sweet Earth Awesome Burger, Sweet Earth Bac’n and Sweet Earth Cheeze. The Bac’n style offers smoky flavors and a blend of plant-based oils, while American-style Cheeze slices are made with a proprietary blend of plant-based fibers for a stretchy, melty texture and taste, the company says.

 Photograph courtesy of Sweet Earth Foods

General Mills

Pillsbury Jalapeno Cheddar Freezer-to-Oven Scones

General Mills Convenience & Foodservice released new Pillsbury Jalapeno Cheddar Freezer-to-Oven Scones. Jalapeno Cheddar Scones combine jalapeno and cheddar flavors with a touch of heat. They come in a freezer-to-oven format with no artificial ingredients, no colors from artificial sources and no high fructose corn syrup.

Photograph courtesy of General Mills

McCormick for Chefs

McCormick Culinary Blends

For foodservice operators seeking to incorporate global, trending flavors into menus, McCormick for Chefs in July launched five McCormick Culinary Blends, pre-blended spice mixes intended to ensure consistent flavor and help save on labor costs. Spice blend varieties include: Harissa Seasoning (hot chiles, warm spices and mint); Japanese Seven Spice (chiles, sesame seeds and nori); Moroccan Seasoning (cinnamon, cumin, black, red peppers and turmeric); Peruvian Seasoning (chile pepper, paprika and cumin); and Za’atar Seasoning (herby and citrusy flavors).

Photograph courtesy of McCormick for Chefs

Planterra Foods

Planterra Foods

Planterra Foods launched OZO, a line of plant-based protein products that includes burgers, ground, nuggets and breakfast sausage patties. All OZO products contain up to 22 grams of protein per serving, are non-GMO and certified vegan by BeVeg. Recipes use a high-quality pea and rice protein that relies on fermentation of shiitake mycelia (root), according to the company.

Photograph courtesy of Planterra Foods