The annual Most Innovative New Product Awards kicked off the 25th Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago by recognising this year’s most innovative confectionery and snack products and the companies that created them.
“Innovation puts the candy and snack categories in the driver’s seat when it comes to flavour and product trends, and the 2022 Most Innovative New Product Awards continue to highlight those that accelerate us into the future,” noted John Downs, president and CEO of the National Confectioners Association.
“Consumers have been making life at home a little more enjoyable over the past two years by incorporating their favourite treat or snack into their lives in a way that has brought a variety of new flavours and fun to their daily routines.”
Retail leaders representing 85 percent of the confectionery and snack categories’ buying power served as judges across the 13 categories that comprise the Most Innovative New Product Awards, including Small Business Innovator and the highly coveted Best in Show designation, and ultimately evaluated more than 300 candy and snacks.
The winners of the Most Innovative New Products Awards are as follows:
- Best in Show: Trü Frü, LLC. Natures Strawberries Hyper-Chilled Fresh in Ruby Cacao
- Small Business Innovator: Carrot Bacon – Carolina Smoke
- Chocolate: Lindt & Sprüngli (USA), Inc. Lindt CLASSIC RECIPE OatMilk
- Non-Chocolate: Ferrara Nerds Gummy Clusters Very Berry 8oz
- Gum & Mints: Mars Wrigley US EXTRA Refreshers Fruity Mix Sugar-Free Chewing Gum
- Salty Snacks: KrackCorn, LLC KrackCorn Original Family Size
- Sweet Snacks: The Hershey Company Reese’s Snack Bar
- Meat Snacks: 4505 Meats Chile Limon Chicharrones
- Savory Snacks: Pecan Nation Cinnamon Healthy Snacking Pecans
- Novelty/Licensed: Jelly Belly Candy Company Jelly Belly Harry Potter™ Butterbeer™ Barrel Tin
- Seasonal: Ferrero NA Kinder Holiday Mix Countdown Calendar
- Gourmet/Premium | Candy: Ferrero North America Nutella B-Ready
- Gourmet/Premium | Snack: Trü Frü, LLC Natures Strawberries Hyper-Dried Fresh and Immersed in Crème
Additionally, the 2022 Sweets & Snacks Expo announced the winners of the Golden and Silver Candy Dish Awards and the Woman of Influence Award during Monday’s presentation:
- 2022 Golden Candy Dish Award: Kathy Corcoran, vice president at Premier Specialty
- 2022 Silver Candy Dish Award: Lois Anthony, director of sales at PEZ
- 2022 Woman of Influence Award: Emily Edmondson, sales director at Galerie
This year’s Expo focuses on the show’s evolution over the past 25 years and its history of offering new confectionery and snack products, actionable insights and opportunities for members of the confectionery and snack industries to connect.
“Throughout its history, the show has served as a launch pad for new products and companies and brought new ideas to the forefront of the candy and snack industries,” Downs concluded.
“I am proud of the work we have done to make the Sweets & Snacks Expo the premier trade show for the candy and snack industries, and I can’t wait to see what the next 25 years of innovation looks like from these dynamic and resilient categories.”