Tropical News

Top 10 Snack Mixes

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Tropical Nut & Fruit specializes in premium snack mixes, freshly roasted nuts and seeds, dried fruit, and hundreds of bulk and packaged candies, spices, grains and specialty foods. Our snack mixes are mixed by hand, in our own facilities and range from crunchy “bar” mixes, such as Mexicali Fire®, to our more traditional nut and fruit blends, like the ever popular Hi-Energy™. If sweet is what your customers are craving, Tropical offers sweeter snack mixes as well, like the crowd pleasing Sweet Tooth™; but if spicier is what they crave then Firecracker Hot & Spicy® is just what you need. No matter what snack mix you’re looking for Tropical has a snack mix everyone can enjoy. Here are the top 10 snack mixes Tropical’s customers enjoy, where does your favorite rank?

 

  1. Sunburst™
  2. Sweet Heat™
  3. Mexicali Fire®
  4. Hi-Energy™
  5. Happy Hour Mix™
  6. Poppin Nut Crunch™
  7. Sweet Tooth™
  8. Wild About Wasabi®
  9. Diet Delight®
  10. Firecracker Hot & Spicy®
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Holiday Tradition

Holiday season is a whole new ball game at Tropical.  As we face off against that period from Thanksgiving to Christmas, we find our biggest challenge being … it is busy! The retail store is busy, the sales staff is busy, and most of all, production is busy.  Our entire staff gives it 100%, working long hours, and looking forward to … well … now … by the weekend before Christmas, much of the hustle settles down and production’s 6 day weeks are back to normal.

Before we get into our first tradition, everyone at Tropical wants to thank, our employees for working hard, our vendors, and of course, our customers, for making this another successful holiday season.

We have a couple traditions, as the holiday’s role in, our first, the Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest.

Please, look at the picture below, and VOTE HERE

sweater contest

 

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Top 10 Grabeez®
 TF Sweet Caroline_NO LOGO  TF The Big Cheese_NoLOGO  TF Firecracker Hot & Spicy_NO LOGO

Tropical Foods signature snack filled cups, Grabeez®, are not only portable and convenient, but also filled with delicious snacks. With a newly redesigned lid, they keep snacks fresh, making them the perfect snack to store at your desk or to take with you on the go. Our newest additions to our Grabeez® line; Sweet Caroline®, The Big Cheese®, and Firecracker Hot & Spicy®, offer the perfect snack for those who have a sweet tooth, someone who wants a good crunchy snack, or those who prefer a spicier snack. We expect these 3 NEW cups to be in the top 10 in no time.  Here is the list of the current top 10 Grabeez® Tropical provides, see if your favorite made the cut:

  1. Sunburst
  2. Diet Delight
  3. Gummy Bears
  4. Yogurt Mini Pretzels
  5. Chocolate Mini Pretzels
  6. Sour Neon Worms
  7. Fantastix
  8. Banana Split
  9. Mexicali Fire
  10. Sour Fruit Slices
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Top 10 Snack Bags at Colleges and Universities

Almonds, Raw  200900Tropical Foods’ Snack Bags are a popular product purchased and used in many different application in the Education channel. For Colleges and Universities, snack bags are a healthy snack options for students and staff, can also be sold at concession stands, or used as take away in catered events. For primary schools, Tropical’s snack bags are the perfect healthy snack for younger students and are a great teaching tool to instill healthy eating habits, they also serve as a great midday snack for staff and faculty. Here is a look at the top 10 snack bags, see if your favorite made the cut:

  1. Almonds, Whole, 3oz
  2. Hi Energy, 3.5oz
  3. California Mix, 3oz
  4. Sunburst, 3.5oz
  5. Chocolate Peanuts, 4oz
  6. Deluxe Mixed Nuts, R/S, 3.5oz
  7. Cashews, Whole, R/S, 2.25oz
  8. Chocolate Raisins, 4oz
  9. Diet Delight, 3.5oz
  10. Yogurt Raisins, 4oz
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2015 Food & Eating Trends

 

food and eating trends 3

It is that time of year, everyone has their predictions and insights into how food & eating habits will change in the upcoming year.  What is new? What will stay the same? Are we talking about long term trends or eating fads?  In preparation for our own 2015 Food & Eating Trends list, we studied 18 sources of trend information.  Following are the Top 5 Food & Eating Trends that will affect our industry in 2015.

1. “Do-It-Yourself” Health – More consumers are eating healthier, but in different ways.  Both menus (for operators) and packaged options (from manufacturers) need to address many different health related ways of thinking, whether it be gluten-free, low sodium, low sugar, no MSG, energy boost, GMO free, PHO free, trans fat free, sugar free, raw, natural, organic, portion control, low calorie, vegetarian, vegan or paleo.  Operators and manufacturers can’t address every aspect with every product, but they will try as every consumer wants something different.

2. “Do-It-Yourself” Taste – Along the same lines as #1, I borrowed the “Do-It-Yourself” term.  Every year we hear about a new niche flavor, and after scouring 18 sources, there were many different  ones.  A common theme among sources is Asian flavors, look out for Thai, Japanese, Filipino, Korean and Vietnamese flavors, these are the ones to watch in 2015.  With that said, don’t forget about other trending flavors and taste profiles, such as; bitter, as it relates to coffees, chocolates, vegetables and beer; fermented foods; smoky flavors;  rice crackers; seaweed chips and savory yogurts.  Be prepared to see sweet, sour, savory and spicy combinations that will make you take a second look.  Consumers have become more adventurous with their palate, Baum & Whiteman calls it our “restless palate syndrome”, operators and manufacturers have the opportunity to try new flavors and take some chances.

3. Snacking – MASSIVE is the only word I can think of to describe this exploding subset of the food industry. The latest statistics claim that 91% of adults admit to snacking daily.  Many are replacing traditional meals, 2 or 3 times per day, with snacks, 5-7 times per day.  Couple this with “healthy” and we have a “Healthy Snacking” industry that has taken over the world. Keep and eye out for portion control, healthy, unique flavor combinations and  grab-and-go … all demands that will drive snacking into and beyond 2015.

4. Food Everywhere – I shortened the term “Foodservice Everywhere”, because I think it is much bigger that that. Everywhere you go, you can have a meal or grab a snack.  Department stores, home improvement stores and furniture stores all have joined the game.  Not only is food expanding to new venues, it is expanding within itself.  Going to the grocery store not only involves picking up food to cook for the week, it involves getting snacks for “the white basket”, stocking up on  pre-made grab-and-go vegetables, sandwiches, pretzels & hummus and cheese & meat snacks for the kids lunches and of course hitting the deli for that already prepared meal for that night.  You can walk out of Burlington Coat Factory with a new outfit and a bag of Buffalo Nuts or take the kids to IKEA for dinner.  Convenience! We need to save time and we need everything to be convenient.  We all have to eat everyday, and everyone is jumping in to the feeding game.

5. Technology – Yes, this could be the most important food & eating trend for the foreseeable future.  As consumers want everything now, or … on their schedule, technology will allow a consumer to know everything about the restaurant they are about to go to, or the grocery item they are about to buy.  On the flip side, operators will will know their consumers, the “usual”, or their favorites, and service will be quick and painless.  Right now, you can order online very quickly and easily, whether it be pizza or gourmet dinners, and have them delivered to your doorstep within the hour.  This concept is and will continue to move into the grocery business.  Digital menu boards are becoming more widespread. Shelf level QR Codes will be used to communicate nutritional, health benefits, source, and other “need it now” consumer information.  Operators will be able to use facial recognition software to identify a regular as they enter the door, send them a message on their smart phone, “Hello Mr Jones, would you like your usual?” and once again through facial recognition, deliver it to Mr Jones in a crowded room.  Electronic wallets will allow for that bill to be paid with limited interruption.

Sources of information : Technomics, csnews.com, MNN Bloggers, Baum & Whiteman, Nielsen, fastcasual.com. Forbes

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