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Gate Tests Single-Serve Seafood Dinners

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Gate Petroleum Co. is expanding the food offerings in its convenience stores by adding Beaver Street Fisheries' Sea Best frozen single-serve seafood dinners. It's partnered with the local brand out of a desire to offer healthier food, reported the Jacksonville Business Journal.

Three Gate locations will offer the Signature Singles "Gourmet on the Go" meals in a pilot test: 4123 Town Center Parkway in St. Johns Town Center, 4120 Belfort Road, and Gate's corporate headquarters at 9540 San Jose Blvd. The dinners come in five varieties: citrus scallops and linguini; stuffed clams; black bean and shrimp tacos; tilapia florentine; and spinach and artichoke flounder.

The test offering is designed to appeal to young, healthy-minded, on-the-go customers.

"You wouldn't think of seafood items in a convenience store like Gate," said Roger Denmark, research and development manager for Sea Best. "But you see more and more pick-up meals in vending machines. And especially in the younger generation, they're more health conscious than the generation before."

Despite the common perception of c-stores, these meals fit with Gate's customer base, according to Gate President John Peyton. "Sea Best is known for its quality and convenience, which was a perfect match for our stores," he said.

Customer feedback and sales will determine whether the test is successful, Peyton added. The meals could potentially expand to other stores.

"We'll stay with [the convenience] store application to start," Denmark said, "and see what kind of foot traffic it generates. We could potentially see that elsewhere."

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