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May 25, 2017

House Leadership Decides to Protect Debit Reform
Plans to remove debit repeal from the Choice Act were announced.

New Transportation Energy Models Delivered at Fuels Institute’s Student Competition
Georgetown University took top honors at the 2017 Fuels Institute Case Competition this week in Denver.

Phillips 66 Unveils New Mobile Platform
Mobile commerce connected sites are currently being tested in the Texas and Oklahoma regions.

Trump’s Budget Calls for Tolling, Rest Area Commercialization
Administration’s 2018 budget proposal would ‘liberalize’ current tolling policy and allow private investment in rest areas.

Driverless Vehicles Could Put the Brakes on Accident-related Lawsuits
A veteran transportation attorney outlines the cascading legal effects of autonomous vehicles.

Future Focus of Restaurants? Delivery, Experiences
An analyst predicts that delivery will change the industry in the same way the drive-thru window did.


May 24, 2017

Merchants Visit Washington to Protect Consumer Savings, Main Street Businesses
Led by NACS, dozens of retailers met with members of Congress about keeping the current debit-card reform.

OMB Proposes Retailer SNAP Fee
Initial analysis shows the fee could range anywhere from $250 to $20,000 per location.

Why Quality Restrooms Matter for Businesses
Contributor Frank Beard calls bathrooms the “true litmus test of overall store quality.”

Google to Mine Financial Transactions for Shopping Data
The company wants to prove its online ads push customers into brick-and-mortar stores.

Mars, Wrigley Unveil More Than 30 New Product Innovations
From new Starburst and Snickers to M&M’s and Skittles, iconic candies are getting flavor extensions.

Design Erases Retail-Dining Line
Convenience stores and supermarkets can build on key elements to give customers a dining experience.


May 23, 2017

Fuels Groups Oppose Shifting the Point of Obligation
New video highlights the harms associated with moving Renewable Fuel Standard compliance responsibility from refiners to retailers.

Fuels Institute Debuts First Book
New book, ‘Urbanization: The Effect of Urban Development on U.S. Vehicle Travel and Fuel Demand,’ details historical forces of urbanization and the impact on the transportation market.

Partnering for Healthier Convenience
NACS Convenience Matters podcast details the NACS plan to revolutionize the convenience industry to help curb the American obesity epidemic.

Topaz Teams Up With Ireland’s Top Athletes in Cash for Clubs
Program encourages people throughout Ireland to go the extra mile for their local community.

Oneida Nation Announces New C-Store Concept
Maple Leaf Market will focus on providing fresh, made-to-order food.


May 22, 2017

Target Targets Fill-In Shoppers
New marketing campaign hopes to bring in folks who run out of milk and other household staples.

7-Eleven Franchisees Call on Congress to Protect Debit Swipe Fee Reform
Repealing debit swipe fee reform would take franchisees back to a time when big banks could charge sky-high rates on every debit transaction.

New York City Moves Ahead with New Menu-Labeling Rules
New rules would apply to chain convenience and grocery stores.

McDonald’s Stealth-Healths Its Ice Cream
QSR has been phasing out artificial ingredients from its soft-serve vanilla ice cream, and nobody noticed.

Restaurants Feel the Pressure of Prepared Foods
Survey also suggests that rising food and labor costs are significant barriers to growth.

Mansfield Surpasses $6 Million for MDA
Annual golf classic is the largest golf event in the U.S. that supports the Muscular Dystrophy Association.


May 19, 2017

USDA Announces SNAP Final Rule Delay
The Food & Nutrition Service hits the drawing board to redefine “variety” to work for small retailers.

Wawa’s Heading to Washington, D.C.
The convenience store chain confirms plans to open its first store in the nation’s capital.

Focusing on Healthy Choices
Speakers from the PHA Summit share their insights on our podcast.

Consumers and Retailers Push to Protect Swipe Fee Reform
New video from NACS simplifies the complex story.

Gilbarco Passes 350 Million Secure EMV Transactions Mark
Retailers continue to transition to EMV at a rapid pace.


May 18, 2017

Lidl To Open First of 20 U.S. Stores in June
Arlington, Virginia, store will open June 15, bringing huge discounts on groceries to U.S. consumers.

Employees Are Failing Drug Tests
More than one in 25 U.S. workers fail their employer’s drug tests.

American Overwhelmed by Conflicting Food Information
Survey finds that a “health halo” could be causing flawed food and nutrition decisions.

Wawa Makes Mobile Ordering Available for Rewards Members
Customers can get Wawa’s made-to-order food and beverages through their mobile device.

ExxonMobil to Launch Mobil-Branded Service Stations and Fuels in Mexico
First Mobil station will open in Mexico in the second half of 2017.

Millennials Rate Foodservice Chains’ Brand Equity
Harris Poll study suggests that gap between baby boomers and millennials may reflect boomers’ needs to eat healthier.


May 17, 2017

Massachusetts Considers Raising Tobacco Purchase Age to 21
The legislators are also discussing a tax on soft drinks.

NACS Submits Recommendations on Fuels
EPA is currently reviewing all environmental regulations.

Meet Hershey’s Medley, the Grocery Store of the Future
The Hershey Lab explores a supermarket without traditional boundaries.

PepsiCo to Debut Cinnamon-Flavored Pepsi Fire
7-Eleven will have the limited-edition soda exclusively as a Slurpee flavor until the end of June.

Canada Added More Gas Stations in 2016
The number of Canadian gas stations increased for the second straight year.


May 16, 2017

Dairy Industry Campaign Moos Beyond Milk
New campaign launched this week by dairy companies and organizations is their first-ever industrywide push to promote all things dairy.

Share and Compare
This week’s Convenience Matters podcast looks at how retailers can use study groups to help each other grow stronger.

Chick-fil-A Launches First Seasonal Sandwich
BBQ-inspired sandwich and watermelon-mint lemonade will run for a limited time this summer.

A&W Heads Into Summer with New Restaurants
Greatest growth is coming from convenience stores, as new and current franchisees expand.

Deliv Adds Grocery Option to Same-Day Service
Last-mile delivery service is competing with Instacart and Amazon for retail grocery delivery.

Hard Rock-Branded Fueling Site Coming to Ohio
The Rockstop Gas and Wash will be the first Hard Rock-branded gas station and car wash.


May 15, 2017

PepsiCo Invests in Healthier Foods and Beverages
Company is advancing its goals to transform its product portfolio and offer healthier options through an agreement with Partnership for a Healthier America.

Parker’s Donates $20,000 to Local Public Schools
Donation was made possible through Parker’s Fueling the Community program.

Tom Thumb Raises $30,000 for Local Charities
Funds raised through the Mahi Mayhem Fishing Tournament will benefit two local charities.

Dunkin’ Donuts Brings Back Perks Week
The coffeehouse chain will add $5 to the accounts of new enrollees in DD Perks.

7‑Eleven Jumps on Latest Toy Craze
Convenience store chain is now selling Fidget Spinners, and a new TWIX-topped donut.


May 12, 2017

NACS, Cumberland Farms Make PHA Commitments
NACS is the first retail association to make a commitment with Partnership for a Healthier America, and Cumberland Farms becomes PHA’s largest c-store partner to date.

Jacob Schram Named European Industry Leader of the Year
Alimentation Couche-Tard group president will accept the award at the NACS Insight Convenience Summit–Europe.

Global Confectioners Pledge Transparency, Portion Guidance
By 2022, consumers will see more options in smaller packages with clear calorie labels from Mars Chocolate, Wrigley, Nestlé, Ferrero, Lindt, Ghirardelli, Russell Stover and Ferrara.

Dannon Company Surpasses Goals to Reduce Sugar and Fat
The company has successfully reduced sugar in all children’s products and exceeded nutrient density, sugar, and fat level goals for Dannon’s entire portfolio.

Pennsylvania Governor Visits Rutter’s on ‘Jobs That Pay’ Tour
Gov. Tom Wolf emphasized that retail often provides a career choice for many.

Unilever Ventures Invests in Sun Basket Meal Kit Startup
The company touted Sun Basket’s “healthy, organic meals service platform” as a clear leader in the meal kit market.

Wasting Money on Fighting Sugar
An op-ed in Forbes contends that the war on sugar isn’t making a dent in obesity.


May 11, 2017

Kroger to Open New C-Store Concept
Kroger’s convenience store division launches a new banner, Fresh Eats MKT.

And the Winner Is…
NACS and Insight reveal the 2017 International Convenience Retailer of the Year Award finalists, with the winner announced at the upcoming Convenience Summit–Europe.

Consumers Off to a Shaky Start in 2017
IRI survey suggests that uncertainty in early 2017 is causing consumers to engage in money-saving efforts; however, they will pay for premium products that hit the mark.

Feeding America to Play Bigger Role in Reducing Food Waste
MealConnect helps save food that might have gone to waste, then directs the rescued food to pantries and meal programs that serve people in need.


May 10, 2017

Diesel Vehicles Are Alive and Kicking
The Washington Auto Show displayed new light-duty diesel models from Range Rover, General Motors, Jaguar and Mercedes.

Most Retailers Still Prefer Cash
While trendy fast-casuals are making headlines with no-cash rules, the majority of merchants welcome dollars and cents.

Dunkin’ Donuts Speeds Up Service
The company’s research found that customers don’t want to linger in the store.

RaceTrac Launches “It’s Always Summer in the South” Campaign
The convenience store chain uses a mockumentary content series to highlight its Sodapalooza and Swirl World frozen dessert.

Pilot Flying J Treats Moms to Free Coffee
The Mother’s Day promotion for U.S. and Canadian customers runs May 14 to 20.

Monster Beverage Branches Out
The energy drink company will soon debut a non-carbonated energy drink and a zero-calorie carbonated soft drink.


May 9, 2017

Kroger Rolls Out Meal Kits
Grocer’s new meal kit solution is in response to the growing meal kit market dominated by the likes of Blue Apron and Hello Fresh.

Reward Your Employees With a NACS Scholarship
Time is fast running out to nominate tomorrow’s c-store leaders for a scholarship.

Act Now to Stop Debit Reform Repeal
Last week’s committee action brings legislation that would move debit swipe reform closer to the House of Representatives for a vote.

Where Are All the Shoppers?
This week’s NACS Convenience Matters podcast features Nielsen consultant Todd Hale.

Red Bull Soars Into Summer With Limited Time Offer
The new Red Bull Summer Edition Grapefruit Twist is available now through Labor Day.


May 8, 2017

Tobacco Regs Halt 7-Eleven Expansion Plans
City of Philadelphia is limiting the amount of permits it allows for retailers to sell tobacco products.

House Republicans Successfully Pass Health-Care Repeal
Second time’s the charm as the House of Representatives passes legislation that would repeal President Obama’s signature health-care reform law.

Calorie Count Delay Praised by Retailers
Convenience stores will use the delay to work with the FDA for the ability to post calories in a centralized location.

Amazon, Apple, Google, Intuit and PayPal Want to Protect Durbin
The alliance is speaking out against language contained in the Financial CHOICE Act that would repeal current debit swipe fee reforms.

ExxonMobil App Connects With Apple Watch
Consumers can use the Speedpass app through connected cars and the Apple Watch to activate the pump and purchase fuel.

Starbucks Accused of Stealing the Unicorn
New York City café and its owner have filed a federal trademark infringement lawsuit against Starbucks for allegedly stealing its Unicorn recipe.


May 5, 2017

Congress Passes Legislation to Fix SNAP Final Rule
Lawmakers direct FNS to redefine “variety” to work for small retailers.

NACS Opposes Action to Repeal Debit Swipe Fee Reform
Yesterday, the House Financial Services Committee reported the Financial Choice Act, moving it to the full House for a vote.

Florida Clerk Finds Gas Pump Skimmer
Customers attempted to distract the employee, but he saw through the scheme.

EPA Sends WOTUS Repeal Proposal to White House
The controversial rule could impact convenience stores near or touching protected water if it’s not repealed.

Rhode Island C-Stores Lobby Against Cigarette Tax Increase
Meanwhile, a new proposal in New York would hike the tobacco buying age to 19, with a military exemption.

Australian C-Store Growth Outpaces Grocery Stores
New figures show the industry grew 4.5% in 2016 and outperformed the grocery channel.


May 4, 2017

Santa Fe Says ‘No’ to Soda Tax
New Mexico voters rejected a tax increase on sweetened beverages.

Free Conexxus Webinar Focuses on Customer Engagement
Panelists will highlight customer experience insights that can help convenience store operators establish an engagement strategy.

Chipotle Launches Customizable Bachelor’s Degree Program
Business degree program integrates hands-on, applied learning with theory to accelerate career growth.

Rutter’s Raises $175,000 for Local Charities
Funds were raised this week during the company’s annual golf outing.

Otis Spunkmeyer Brings ‘No Funky Stuff’ to C-Stores
New line of packaged sweet snacks is free from high fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils, artificial colors and artificial flavors.


May 3, 2017

To Be Continued…
House Financial Services Committee resumes debating legislation that includes a full repeal of debit swipe fee reforms.

Sheetz to Hire More than 3,400 Additional Employees Companywide
Open interviews will take place today at all locations.

Plain Packaging Doesn’t Deter French Smokers
New figures show an increase in the number of smokers despite efforts by the French government to stamp out smoking.

Coca-Cola Expands Honest Sport
Organic sports drinks is now available at 400-plus natural foods locations.


May 2, 2017

FDA Delays Menu-Labeling Rule
The new compliance date is May 7, 2018.

House Committee Takes Up Debit Swipe Fee Reform
Today, the House Financial Services Committee will meet to markup the Financial CHOICE Act, which contains language to repeal debit swipe fee reforms.

Convenience Stores Enhance Fast, Hot Food Options
QSRs are feeling the pressure from food-focused convenience stores.

Center Aisle Woes
More grocers and consumers are choosing fresh foods over packaged products.

McDonald’s Creates Useless Utensil
Move over, Spork. McDonald’s has created the Frork.

Worldpay Offers Visa’s Quick Chip
Solution is intended to reduce overall chip card terminal wait time and provide speed of service.


May 1, 2017

The Meal That Keeps on Giving
Breakfast is so important that people are eating it twice during the morning daypart.

Daily Coffee Consumption Up Sharply
While the frequency of daily consumption continued to grow for all age groups, the most robust increase occurring is among those ages 13-18.

Enoc Opens First Solar-Powered Gas Station
Site will produce 120 kilowatts per hour at peak capacity.

Panera to Create 10,000 Delivery Jobs
New digital and mobile ordering-based service will provide meals to offices, hospitals, campuses and homes within an eight-minute drive.

Cumberland Farms Celebrates Its Great Place to Work Certification
Eighty-four percent of employees say Cumberland Farms is a great workplace.


Apr 28, 2017

FDA Delays Menu-Labeling Rule
White House signals a delay in the agency’s final menu-labeling rule, set to take effect on May 5.

Senate Committee Holds Hearing on WOTUS Rule
Under the controversial rule, convenience stores near or touching protected water will be subject to special permitting and Clean Water Act requirements.

Hershey Releases Limited-Edition ‘Flavors of America’ Confections
Iconic brands feature new flavors inspired by popular summertime destinations.

Table for Two at Taco Bell
Taco Bell is taking reservations at its headquarters’ test kitchen via OpenTable.


Apr 27, 2017

Retailers Gather in Washington to Save Debit Reform
House committee meets as merchants walk Capitol Hill.

Trump Administration Outlines Tax Plan
The corporate tax rate would drop to 15% from 35%, and both the estate tax and alternative minimum tax would be repealed.

Labor Shortage Threatens Japan’s Convenience Store Growth
As the population declines, so too has its workforce and availability of part-time workers.

Twinkies Expands its Flavor Profile
Iconic brand is introducing a chocolate sponge cake to its line-up.

Tyson Foods to Acquire AdvancePierre
Combined, the two companies will enhance growth opportunities in convenience foods.


Apr 26, 2017

Believe in the Numbers
In both business and blackjack, Conexxus keynote Jeff Ma shares an extraordinary tale that proves how data trumps luck and gut feelings every time.

NACS Chairman Questions House Committee Plan to “Fix” Debit Reform
“Reform is working,” writes Rahim Budhwani in an opinion piece.

Industry Pioneers Inducted to Conexxus Hall of Fame
Sharon Scace of WEX and David Ezell of Verifone were inducted to the Conexxus Hall of Fame this week at the group’s annual conference in Annapolis.

Kellogg’s Debuts New On-the-Go Snacks
The innovative products for convenience stores are designed to garner repeat customers.

Men Shop Grocery Stores As Often As Women
A new study reveals key insights from in-depth analysis of more than 4 million grocery shopping trips.

States Work to Unify Food Truck Licensure
Cities and counties within states have been regulating the industry, which has created confusing and conflicting rules.

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