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Nerds receives innovative product award at Sweets and Snacks Expo

BY Gisselle Gaitan

After making a splash at the annual National Confectioners Association’s 2018 Sweet and Snacks Expo, Nerds announced that its Big Chewy offering had received an award.

The brand, which is part of Nestlé, was given the Most Innovative Product Award in the non-chocolate category. A panel of more than 20 judges, made up of the leading retailers, wholesalers, trade media, trend spotters and food industry experts, evaluated more than 300 products on their innovation, taste, packaging and ability to sell.

“We are thrilled and honored to be recognized as the most innovative non-chocolate product by the NCA,” Daniela Simpson, director of non-chocolate, said. “As we enter into the chewy candy category with our new Big Chewy Nerds, we are giving our fans the opportunity to enjoy their favorite Nerds flavors in a new way, and will continue looking for big ways to excite our customers for years to come.”

Big Chewy Nerds features a chewy center covered in a crunchy Nerds candy shell, and comes in Orange You Nerdy?, Left-Click Lemon, Strawber2y Squared and Giga Grape flavors.

Consumers can purchase the snack at retailers nationwide in a 6-oz. medium peg that retails for $1.99 and a 10-oz. stand up bag for $2.89.

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Wagz’s new feeder delivers smart pet nutrition

BY Gisselle Gaitan

Wagz is making delivering the right nutrition for dogs easier than ever.

The Portsmouth, N.H.-based company unveiled its new Wagz Serve Smart Feeder, which allows pet owners to control everything that has to do with feeding their furry family member, straight from a smartphone.

“Dog owners know that their pets have different levels of activity every day, but don’t always know how it should translate to portion size,” Terry Anderton, CEO of Wagz, said. “Our new smart feeder is loaded with proprietary technology that feeds the right amount of food at the right time, and automates mealtime, but it’s really about one thing—eliminating real-life worries that get in the way of enjoying more fun, hugs and wags with your best bud.”

The video-enabled feeder automatically delivers the right amount of food to dogs, and when paired with the company’s Explore Smart Collar, can portion servings based on the precise activity levels of each animal.

Other functionalities in the feeder include portion control, calorie allocation, built-in replenishments, automatic dispensing, sound alerts that let dogs know when its dinner time, and a built-in HD video camera.

“The Wagz Serve Smart Feeder is just the first in a line of smart solutions that will reinvent how people connect with their pet. We are enthusiastic about rolling out the entire system throughout the year,” Anderton said.

More information on the feeder, including pricing, can be found on the company’s website.

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Hostess brings back limited-edition patriotic treats

BY Gisselle Gaitan

Hostess is ringing in summer by bringing back a limited run of several patriotic treats.

Packaged in red, white and blue, the Kansas City, M.O.-based company will launch the Red, White and Blue Twinkies, Star Spangled CupCakes, Strawberry Donettes and Star Spangled Ding Dongs, just in time for Memorial Day.

“Hostess is an iconic American brand,” Keith Peterfeso, brand director for All Day Snacking at Hostess Brands, said. “We are proud to celebrate summer and Americana by expanding our patriotic line of ‘Red, White and Blue’ treats.”

The Red, White and Blue Twinkies, Star Spangled CupCakes and Star Spangled Ding Dongs are decorated with patriotic sprinkles, frosting and coloring. Meanwhile, the Strawberry Donettes come in a red coloring that contains a strawberry flavor.

All treats are made in the United States, and available in grocery stores nationwide through Independence Day.

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