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2009 Candy Expo and Disappointment in Hersheys
Posted: 28 May 2009 03:53 AM   [ Ignore ]  
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I spent three days at the all candy expo in Chicago last week, to find that i was very disappointed in Hershey’s showing.  The booth this year was not as nicley done as years past, i feel like they didnt have as much to look at, i.e. displays.  Also, i felt very intimidated when trying to apporach anyone to ask them any questions as the Hershey’s reps. swarmed together like bees.  I have found them to be much more approachable and more friendly in the past.  I am not sure what exactly is going on but Hershey’s is changing no doubt.  I also noticed that this year unlike that of last year Hershey’s didnt have any Dogoba or Starbucks products to sample or even on display.  Then i get home to hear the rumor that Hershey’s Starbucks is no more….can anyone confirm?

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Posted: 05 June 2009 05:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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I haven’t heard anything about the Starbucks chocolate line being discontinued.

Since I didn’t attend ACE this year, it’s hard to comment on their behavior. But I’ve found most of the “big candy” companies are much less focused on the folks who wander into their booths than the small companies that have booths that are too tiny for wandering into.

For the most part the staff on the floor aren’t even sales reps, they’re just booth meat - there to hand out samples and field requests. I think because most of the small companies have to buy Hershey’s through a wholesaler/broker, there’s no reason for Hershey’s to have to talk directly to retailers ... so they don’t.

Personally, I’ve always found them cold, since the first ACE I attended in 2006. But a smaller/sparser booth is probably an indication of the economy (though candy is still strong). A lot of companies are cutting back on the huge expenses associated with trade shows.

However, when it comes to their other chocolate lines like Dagoba and Scharffen Berger, I see them at a lot of other trade shows like ExpoWest and the Fancy Food Show, so perhaps they’re concentrating their outreach efforts there.

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Posted: 05 June 2009 05:18 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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I did a lil bit of further digging, and called the Artisan Confections Company, the subsidiary of Hershey’s that is responsible for manufacturing the Dagoba and Starbucks chocolate brands.  They told me that yes, indeed, the Starbucks brand has been discontinued.  Supposedly Starbucks and Hershsey’s mutually dropped the product line so that they could each focus on their “core business” independently of one another.  Joseph Schmidt is also no longer.

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Posted: 05 June 2009 06:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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bgreene - 05 June 2009 12:18 PM

They told me that yes, indeed, the Starbucks brand has been discontinued.  Supposedly Starbucks and Hershey’s mutually dropped the product line so that they could each focus on their “core business” independently of one another.

How strange that they would go into such a huge business undertaking without any plan of sticking with it long enough to develop it.

It’s been barely a year since the products hit store shelves ... is that really enough time to create a strong brand?

Looks like folks may be seeing some good clearance deals on them soon!

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