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Mars unveils holiday lineup for 2012

BY Allison Cerra

HACKETTSTOWN, N.J. — Mars Chocolate is getting ready for the holiday season by unveiling its new offerings for winter 2012.

The new treats include:

  • Filled bar shapes: Mars offers a selection of the season’s most iconic shapes featuring the company’s Snickers and Milky Way brands. The shapes include Snickers nutcracker, Snickers peanut butter Santa and Milky Way Simply Caramel snowman. The 1.1-oz. singles shapes will carry a suggested retail price of 60 cents per package, while the 6.6-oz. six-pack shapes will carry a suggested retail price of $2.99;

  • Twix Sugar Cookie Minis combines Twix with sugar cookies. The 10.5-oz. packages will carry a suggested retail price of $3.99;

  • 3 Musketeers Hot Cocoa with Marshmallow Minis is a new limited-edition holiday flavor that will be available in a 10-oz. bag for a suggested retail price of $3.99;

  • Dove Peppermint Bark singles features white chocolate infused with peppermint candy pieces, atop a layer of Dove Silky Smooth dark chocolate. The product will be packaged in a 1.16-oz. package for a suggested retail price of 99 cents;

  • Dove Silky Smooth milk chocolate truffles Tree Tins, available in small 2.12-oz. and large 5.64-oz. packages for a suggested retail price of $4.99 and $9.99, respectively;

  • Dove milk and dark chocolate-covered almonds gift box, $3.99 for a 4.5-oz. package;

  • M&M’s Naughty and Nice Fun Size gift box, available in milk chocolate and peanut, for 99 cents per 1-oz. package;

  • M&M’s Fun Size milk chocolate candies tin ornament, which feature M&M’s characters, for $1.99 per 1-oz. package;

  • M&M’s Fun Size milk chocolate candies gift box, which retails for $2.99 per 2.5-oz. case;

  • M&M’s chocolate Solid Santa, which features M&M’s characters Red and Ms. Green, for $3.99 per 5-oz. package;

  • Minis Mix filled bar gift box features a variety of Snickers, Twix, Milky Way and 3 Musketeers for $3.99 per 5-oz. box;

  • Snickers milk chocolate Football with Minis, which features a hollow football-shaped chocolate and Mini Snickers that are packaged inside the top of the box, carries a suggested retail price of $5.49; and

  • Dove Promises Silky Smooth white chocolate, available in a 7.94-oz. package for a suggested retail price of $4.50.

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Kashi’s Soft n’ Chewy bar offers half-serving of fruit, vegetable

BY Allison Cerra

LA JOLLA, Calif. — Kashi has launched new Soft n’ Chewy granola bars in a banana chocolate chip flavor.

The new bar combines Kashi’s signature blend of 7 Whole Grains with soft-baked banana bread and dark chocolate chips and provides one-half serving of fruit and one-half serving of vegetables, Kashi said.

Kashi banana chocolate chip Soft n’ Chewy granola bars now are available nationwide for a suggested retail price of $3.89.

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Cheez-It celebrates election season with Facebook contest

BY Allison Cerra

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. — Cheez-It is tapping consumers to vote for their favorite Cheez-It cracker flavor.

Getting into the spirit of Election 2012, Americans have the opportunity to select their favorite flavor of Cheez-It crackers, including colby, Italian four cheese, white cheddar, pepper jack, hot and spicy, baby swiss, mozzarella and cheddar jack, on the brand’s Facebook page. The consumer who casts the most votes for the winning flavor in the "Vote for the Top Cheese" election will win a four-year supply of Cheez-It crackers and get their likeness on a future Cheez-It box. To earn votes, consumers can vote for their favorite candidate throughout the election, as well as participate in "Vote for the Top Cheese" activities on the brand’s Facebook application, such as playing campaign-themed games, watching debates between the candidates and participating in online polls. Seven runners-up will receive a one-year supply of Cheez-It crackers. Voting ends April 5.

"While election years are historically a very divisive time, the Vote for the Top Cheese campaign is aimed to bring Americans together around a platform everyone can support — great flavor," said Todd Penegor, president of Kellogg Snacks. "Through the eight Cheez-It cracker candidates and online debates, our goal is to leave Americans with a positive taste and perhaps expanded palate this election season."

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