Beverage Watch: 7-Eleven Franchisee Trade Show

New beers, sodas, milkshakes, more make debut at annual Chicago event

VILLA PARK, Ill. -- A 7-Eleven trade show is always a great place to get a glimpse of new products coming to the convenience store industry, and this month’s Franchise Owners Association of Chicagoland Trade Show in Villa Park, Ill., was no different.

Convenience Store Products walked the floor with about 240 franchisees to get a feel for what suppliers are rolling out this spring and was pleasantly surprised to find a wide variety of new products and new packaging.

See the slideshow below for several new beverage products just hitting shelves or coming soon. We also must note three products so new that the vendors didn’t even have prototypes to show in their booths:

  • Perrier Sparkling Water L’Orange, an exclusive to 7-Eleven c-stores.
  • 7UP Tropical, coming later this month.
  • Bai5 Tanzania Lemonade Tea, coming this spring.

Watch over the next week for new products from the in other categories, as well.

Rockstar Energy expands its product line with four new additions: Pure Zero Blue Ice, Pure Zero Mango Orange Passion Fruit, Sparkling Cherry Citrus and Sparkling Peach.

It’s become a tradition that PepsiCo’s Gatorade create an exclusive flavor for 7-Eleven each summer. This year’s edition: Fierce Green Apple.

It’s big news for Taco Bell fans that Mtn Dew Baja Blast, a staple of the Mexican QSR’s soda fountain, is available in stores for the first time.

Robinson’s Fruit Shoot is new from PepsiCo and targets children with a flavorful fruit drink. Available in berry, apple and strawberry.

New packaging brings Anheuser-Busch’s Shock Top to the single-serve door in bright colors that underscore the three flavors now available: original Belgian White, Lemon Shandy and new Honeycrisp Apple Wheat.

Anheuser-Busch’s new Johnny Appleseed Hard Cider offers a counterpoint to its bitterer Stella Cidre. This one aims for “sweet and intense” flavor.

E. & J. Gallo’s New Amsterdam vodka has seen remarkable growth over the past year. Two new flavors are just hitting shelves: orange and pineapple.

Four new Bolthouse Farms smoothie flavors speak to healthy sipping this spring. Among them: Green Goodness (kiwi and apple), Strawberry Banana, Amazing Mango and (not pictured) Multi-V Goodness (cherry).

Avitae Caffeine + Water gets a packaging makeover. Targeting the enhanced-water category, the product comes in three strengths, one with a caffeine level equivalent to a soda, another like a cup and a half of coffee and the third with the punch of an energy drink.

Vita Coco Coconut Water gets the lemonade treatment, and yes, it would be an excellent mixer with New Amsterdam vodka.

Taking advantage of the explosive growth of Moscato wine, flavored-alcohol beverage Myx is available in 4-packs of 187-ml bottles and co-owned by singer Nicki Minaj.

MillerCoors’ newest line extension, Coors Light Summer Brew, aims to bring a younger consumer to the proven-successful lightly citrus-flavored-beer category. While not considered a shandy, the beer banks on citrus flavor to draw in the millennial beer drinker. The limited-time brew rolled out in April.

Coca-Cola Co. highlighted new offers under the glaceau brand, including fruitwater sparkling in three flavors and vitaminwater energy, which includes a raspberry citrus flavor that is exclusive to 7-Eleven.

Goose Island’s new 312 Urban Pale Ale picks up on the success of its 312 Urban Wheat beer. Word on the street is a third flavor will follow this fall.

The latest addition to Monster Energy is a fourth flavor of Muscle Monster Energy Shake: strawberry.

Cold Stone Creamery gets the milkshake treatment in three flavors: Chocolate Fudge Brownie, Strawberry Swirl and Simply Vanilla. From Steuben Foods.

Costa Rica ready-to-drink coffee beverages come from a 65-year-old Costa Rican dairy but are new to the United States. Available in Iced Cappuccino and Iced Mocha.

Mike’s Hard Lemonade continues the limited time rollout of its “collectibles” line. The packaging, currently available in Blood Orange and Mango Lemonade, include limited-edition cans designed by a variety of cutting-edge artists. Up next: Cinnamon N’ Fire Apple Ale.