IRVING, Texas — 7-Eleven Inc. is launching Sips & Snacks 2.0, a sequel of its 2019 in-store product test that gives new snacks and beverages a trial run in stores.
Launching in California, this year's Sips & Snacks program will stock 200 7-Eleven stores in the Los Angeles and San Diego markets with 84 exclusive items from a list of 25 hand-picked brands.
"This selection of sips and snacks are ones that a 7-Eleven customer might not expect to find at one of our stores," said 7-Eleven Senior Vice President, Merchandising and Demand Chain Jack Stout. "7-Eleven's Sips & Snacks initiative offers small businesses a rare opportunity to reach thousands and potentially millions of customers with their most innovative products. We are excited to help boost emerging brands' growth, development and success by giving them the chance to test their products in a real retail environment."
The products are also available for purchase on the 7Now delivery app for customers located in the Los Angeles and San Diego areas.
This year’s list of Sips & Snacks products and brands include:
Koia plant-based drinks
Liquid Death canned water
Roar Organic Electrolyte Infusions
Lemon Perfect water
Pop & Bottle cold-brew lattes
Hardbite vegetable snacks
Rind fruit chips
Martin’s Apple Chips
Pescavore tuna jerky
Bulletproof nutrition drinks
Siete Family Foods chips
Biena plant snacks
Pop Zero Popcorn
Mush ready-to-eat oats
Once Upon a Farm
The product selection was curated from hundreds of brands hoping to get a foot in the door at 7-Eleven, according to the largest convenience retailer in the United States. More than 750 companies applied to be invited to present their brand at the company's second annual emerging brands showcase last fall, and only 65 were invited to participate in the two-day "show and taste" expo. Held at company headquarters, the sampling event was attended by about 1,000 7-Eleven employees and Dallas-area franchisees, who made their way through the "speed-dating" taste test, writing reviews and voting for their favorites.
7-Eleven took these notes and votes, along with customer trends and shopping habits, into consideration when choosing the assortment of products featured in the 200 California stores. Approximately one-third of the companies selected for this year's program are either owned by women, minorities or military veterans, Irving, Texas-based 7-Eleven said.
The retailer will host the annual emerging brands event virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Brands interested in showcasing their most innovative products can apply for the 2020 Brands with Heart event. Applications close October 1.
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