Another player in non-chocolate chewy, Promotion in Motion, introduced a new Original Gummi FunMix product line. Available in six options — Gummi Party, Sour Party, Gummi Soda Pops, Fruit Rings, Berry Party and Seriously Sour — the multi-flavor packs feature mixes of gummies, sour gummies and other confections in fun shapes, flavors and colors. Five-ounce peg bags are available for a suggested retail price of $1.49-$1.99, and 10-ounce stand-up bags for $2.99.
Other players in the field include Bazooka Candy Brands and Perfetti Van Melle USA Inc. Bazooka is doubling down on gummy line extensions with RingPop Gummy Gems, which are shaped to resemble the jewels on the wearable pops and feature four flavor combinations, and Gummy Blast as part of its Baby Bottle Pop line. Gummy Blast features baby bottle-shaped gummies and strawberry fizzing powder.
On the Perfetti side, the company continues to build on the Airheads brand with the rollout of Airhead Gummies. These chewy candies are shaped to resemble the brand's balloon mascot. They come in six classic Airheads flavors.
4. Still Space For Jerky
Jerky has been building momentum over the last few years and it isn't slowing down.
Country Archer Jerky Co. showcased an expanded portfolio, which now includes collagen-crafted meat bars. The bars tout real ingredients like grass-fed beef, and a complex amino acid profile from collagen, dates and spices for a satisfying pre- or post-workout snack, according to the company. Three flavor profiles are available: Cayenne Beef, Herb Citrus Turkey and Sweet Barbeque Pork. The company also unveiled its latest jerky flavors with Hatch Chili Beef and Rosemary Turkey.
Meat snack powerhouse Jack Link's continues to innovate by breaking into the refrigerated space with its new Cold Crafted line, which pairs meat and real Wisconsin cheese. The packaged item doesn't have added sugars and features only 1-2 grams of carbs and 100 percent beef. The product is meant as an alternative to sandwiches, CSNews learned from a company executive.
The Lorissa's Kitchen brand from Jack Link's is also adding to its portfolio with an Original flavor, a consumer-requested variety, and the release of preservative-free Steak Strips.
5. Balls of Energy
Portable and popable, energy balls are becoming known as a popular alternative to energy bars, CSNews editors spotted.
Enjoy Life, a subsidiary of Mondelez International Inc., is expanding its allergen-free Protein Bites line with dark raspberry and chocolate banana varieties. Protein Bites have been reformulated without palm oil and are now offered in a five-bite pack for the front-end.
Additionally, the aptly named Protein Ball Co., based in the United Kingdom, showcased its line of all-natural, high-protein snacks. Of its eight varieties, each is made from consumers' choice of one of three protein sources: whey, egg whites or vegan.
Another brand, Bounce, similarly promises a product that is GMO- and gluten-free, vegetarian and provides anywhere from 8 to 13 grams of protein.
The 2018 Sweets & Snacks Expo, hosted by the National Confectioners Association, was held at Chicago's McCormick Place West May 22-24.