Convenience Stores Embrace Beverage Innovation

7-Eleven creates an energy drink; QuikTrip adds a fitness drink to its cooler.

June 24, 2019

ALEXANDRIA, Va.—The convenience channel represents the largest energy drink market in the country, with more than $9 billion in annual sales, according to IRI. So, it’s no surprise that both 7-Eleven and QuikTrip have introduced new beverages to the market.

Creator of the iconic Slurpee, 7-Eleven has a long history of beverage innovation. Now the chain is part of the competitive performance energy drink arena with its own private version called Quake. The proprietary beverage contains electrolytes, creatine, COQ10 and branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs). A 12-ounce can is available for the suggested retail price of $2.49.

“Customers were telling us they want an energy drink that provides more benefits than the traditional energy drink brands offer today,” said Tim Cogil, senior director of private brands, 7-Eleven. “Quake was developed based on customer feedback and incorporates the highest quality and right mix of ingredients that make it unique in the energy space. Our product tested higher than traditional brands in flavor and overall preference.”

Quake comes in four sugar-free flavors: Original, Orange Fusion, Tropical Lemon and Berry Blast.

Meanwhile, the QuikTrip chain has entered into an agreement with Celsius, a growing presence in vending machines and micromarkets, to place the Celsius fitness drink on the top shelf of the “energy” cooler door in more than 450-plus QuikTrip stores, reports Vending Times.

“Celsius aligns perfectly with our convenience store channel partners as we bring an expanded demographic to the energy category, specifically women who account for approximately 53% of our sales, as well as adult males who target a healthier alternative to traditional energy drinks,” said John Fieldly, president and CEO, Celsius.

Celsius has four beverage lines, each offering proprietary functional, healthy energy formulas: Celsius Original, Celsius Heat, Celsius On-the-Go and Celsius Sweetened with Stevia. Celsius contains no sugar, preservatives, aspartame, high-fructose corn syrup, GMOs, artificial flavors or colors. Celsius products are certified kosher and vegan; they are soy and gluten-free and contain little sodium.