A Kiss No Longer Just a Kiss

Companies are putting their brand names to the test. They have experimented with exotic flavor combinations, unique packaging extensions, and even the pairing of brand names with products in non-traditional categories. Such is the case with Hershey USA and its new line of Hershey's Kisses Mini Cookies.

These are mini cookies designed to resemble the “kiss” shape of the classic chocolate candy. Chocolate Chip, Double Chocolate and Confetti Sprinkles are the flavors in the lineup and, as an added perk, they have 0g trans fat; so consumers can eat up without all the guilt.

One for the Road

Road Ready Canister Snacks from Pioneer Snacks have evoked a change of pace for the meat snack segment. Traditionally, these sorts of snacks are individually wrapped or paired with cheese, but Pioneer's carb-friendly Western dry sausage sticks come unwrapped in a plastic canister.

An oxygen absorber pack sits snugly among the 10 sausage sticks, ensuring their freshness, but the snack should be consumed or refrigerated within three days after opening. A Jalapeño Rage variety is part of the collection and is claimed to emit the aroma of natural hickory smoke with an intense, mouth-watering flavor. The reclosable pack is perfect for on the road (as it fits in car cup holders) and on the go.

All About the Peanut Butter

When it comes to Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, it really is all about the peanut butter. Various takes and editions of the popular candy have made their way to market--from a white chocolate shell to honey-roasted peanuts, but one component always remained the same: the peanut butter. Until now.

Hershey Chocolate's Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups feature the usual chocolate candy on the outside, but the inside is filled with chocolate-flavored peanut butter! The product was released as a limited edition, but this double delight is headed toward having a permanent shelf presence.

No Pop, Just Go!

Kellogg USA has launched the first spin-off of its established Pop-Tarts toaster pastries, Go-Tarts Snack Bars. These bars feature a creamy filling and a thin layer of frosting on top just like Pop-Tarts, but with one variation: the packaging warns against warming or heating in a toaster.

While Pop-Tarts target children and teenagers, this new snack is set to appeal to consumers of all ages. The Go-Tarts are available in Frosted Chocolate Fudge, Frosted Strawberry and Frosted Brown Sugar Cinnamon flavors. Oh, there is one more difference: unlike Pop-Tarts, there is only one treat per pack. Luckily, there are 10 bars in all per box, so there should be enough to go around.

“Tossing” Salad Dressings

Sure, consumers love salad, but everyone has encountered the salad dressing obstacle: adding either too much or too little. However, the convenience of Unilever's Wish-Bone Salad Spritzers eliminates the guesswork altogether. These vinaigrette dressing sprays are packaged in a 7oz spray bottle, giving consumers more control over flavoring salads.

The packaging claims to dress more salads than a 16oz bottle of traditional salad dressing--the equivalent of 26 salads. The Spritzers come in Italian (a blend of white wine vinegar and flavorings), Balsamic Breeze (a blend of bold balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, and garlic flavor) or Red Wine Mist (a combination of rich cabernet sauvignon with red wine vinegar and oil) varieties. In addition to the convenience appeal, the dressing sprays have only one calorie per spray and are said to be great on vegetables.


One of the most notable characteristics of restaurant meals is how appealing they look on the plate, being presented in an especially attractive way. At home, budding chefs often find it difficult to achieve such a perfectly arranged plate. In France, under the Paul Bocuse brand, Marie introduced a range of ready meals, now packaged in a “chef's kit,” where the leek-and-rice accompaniment comes in a drum-shaped container, which should be inverted quickly to keep its shape.

Can things get more convenient for on-the-go consumption than bottled water? It seemed impossible, but iLove magazine begs to differ. iLove, said to be the world's first magazine on a bottle, has been launched in Australia. The label of the 600ml bottle can be peeled away to reveal a 32-page glossy magazine described as refreshing, sassy and cool. It is published in four separate editions fortnightly, and it is targeted at the young, trendy woman. So, over are the days when the glossy magazine vied for space in the handbag with other commuting provisions, as iLove conveniently combines both. This format could be adapted easily to other drinks, such as juices or soft drinks.

Various camouflage patterns have made an appearance in fashion, and camouflage designs have been seen in other categories, such as beverages or snacks. However, Manner's Geheimwaffel (“secret wafer”) also plays on words, with Geheimwaffe meaning “secret weapon” in German. The hazelnut cream-filled wafer comes in a camouflage-patterned pack with a sticker carrying the logo of the Austrian federal army and its Internet address. As a recruitment tool, it may not be 100% effective, but it might appeal to aspiring soldiers with a sweet tooth.

In the 1960s, the British children's TV show Blue Peter was showing children how to make Dalek-shaped cakes from Swiss Rolls and licorice strips. Nowadays, fans of the Doctor Who TV show who want cakes with the iconic Dalek shape (as the Daleks are the most feared enemy of the good Doctor) do not need such a hands-on approach to have a cake with a difference. In the U.K., Elisabeth the Chef has launched a Dalek-shaped cake, made even more interesting by the sound chip emitting the classic “exterminate” catchphrase when activated.

Launching a New Consumer Product?
If so, contact Felicia McClain at Mintel Group,
351 W. Hubbard St., Floor 8,
Chicago, IL 60610.
Call: 312-932-0600,
Fax: 312-932-0474
or e-mail: FMcClain@mintel.com
Information in this column is from the Global New Products Database, the premier source of global product intelligence, published by Mintel International Group.