Getting noticed at Sam's Club

Signature Snacks picks a paperboard canister for new size of chocolate-covered pretzels.

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By the Food Processing staff

Signature Snacks Co. earlier this year was faced with the enviable problem of developing a new package for a single, large retail customer.

Signature Snacks, Stamford, Conn., a wholly owned portfolio company of Brynwood Partners, produces the Flipz brand of snacks in four varieties: milk chocolate covered pretzels, white fudge covered pretzels, milk chocolate covered honey grahams, and white fudge covered chocolate grahams.

The Flipz brand has been around for several years in flexible bags. The brand was purchased from Nestlé USA last summer, where it had been neglected in the larger Nestlé operation. As part of the turnaround, Signature Snacks has developed a larger array of packaging to suit customer and consumer demands. In particular, to supply Sam’s Club stores, the company wanted a pack that not only was larger to meet the retailer’s demands but one that would stand out on the shelf.

With a front panel of more than 5 inches across, the metallized foil label of Flipz is hard to miss on the shelf. The canisters also stack well in a club store environment.
After checking out several options, Signature Snacks selected the Linearpak shaped paperboard can from Sonoco, for what is now the company’s largest package size: 22 oz. milk chocolate pretzels.

"We were familiar with the Sonoco Linearpak canister," says Courtney Giel, assistant marketing manager for Signature Snacks. "After completing a competitive analysis, we were confident the Linearpak would best suit our needs. It is not only unique, but provides the best display.

"The club store market is entirely different from other retail channels," she continues. "The product mix is always changing and shoppers are conditioned to look for things that are new and different. It was extremely important to us to have a package that would jump off the shelf visually. The Linearpak can gave us the ‘billboard’ we need to capture the attention of club store shoppers."

The new Flipz package is a 502 x 804 shaped can, which stands 8.25 inches tall with a front panel of more than 5 inches across. This space provides an excellent billboard for the predominantly blue metallized foil label.

The Flipz graphics come to life thanks to the exceptional detail of the seven-color rotogravure printing. The label is finished with a high gloss lacquer, giving the can an eye-catching shine and making it impossible to miss and difficult to resist.

"We think it’s really going to grab shoppers at the point of sale," Giel adds.

The Linearpak can merchandises well in a club store environment, Sonoco officials say. The base and the overcap of Linearpak cans are designed to fit together so that when stacked, the cans fit neatly and securely. This helps ensure the product does not shift during distribution, the brand name remains visible to the consumer, and the pallet can go from truck to the selling floor without adjustments on the part of the retailer.

Linearpak also delivers the performance required by Signature Snacks. A high-barrier foil liner creates a hermetic package that locks in the freshness of the chocolate-coated pretzels and locks out oxygen that might compromise the flavor of the snack. The package is easy to open via a tabbed membrane top that adheres directly to the rim of the can. A royal blue plastic overcap completes the package and helps maintain product freshness after opening, an important benefit for consumers who want to enjoy Flipz pretzels for more than one snacking occasion.

Giel says the Linearpak can offers one final plus. "The Flipz tub fits nicely in the palm of your hand and is just the right size for sharing."

At this time, the club store launch of Flipz coated pretzels in the Linearpak can includes the milk chocolate variety only. As a result of the success of product -- and package -- white fudge covered pretzels will be entering the marketplace soon in a Linearpak can.

For more information, call Sonoco at 800-576-6626 or see www.sonoco.com.

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