Snacks & Candy

Chip Shot

Valero rolls out new proprietary chips in the company's 1,100 retail stores

SAN ANTONIO -- Valero Energy Corp. has launched a line of proprietary chips, under the Fresh Choices brand, in its 1,100 company-operated retail stores nationwide, including its Diamond Shamrock Corner Store, Valero and Beacon locations.

The four flavorscorn chips, nacho cheese-flavored tortilla chips, potato chips and cheese puffsare available in grab-size bags and priced at 75 cents with the purchase of any nonalcoholic beverage, or 89 cents if purchased separately.

The company expects to sell more than 1.5 million bags in its [image-nocss] first year alone, it said.

We conducted extensive consumer taste tests to choose the best-tasting and highest-quality chips, and we priced them well below our competitors, said Gary Arthur, senior vice president of retail and specialty products marketing at Valero. So we're confident that our line will go head-to-head with the national brands.

According to Arthur, the company's new retail distribution center located in San Antonio has helped drive down the costs of Valero's Fresh Choices line. By storing our products, and shipping them directly to our stores when needed, we've been able to cut out the middleman, which allows us to lower the price, said Arthur. With this new line, customers can purchase chips and a drink for less than $2, and that's a great deal.

Valero already has several other Fresh Choices products in its stores, including cold sandwiches, salads and bottled water, and it plans to expand its private label to include single-serve soda in the coming weeks.

The San Antonio-based company has more than 4,700 retail and wholesale branded outlets in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean under various brand names including Diamond Shamrock, Shamrock, Ultramar, Valero and Beacon.

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