Exhibitors are ready to unveil a raft of launches and a wealth of new ideas to give c-store operators the edge in an increasingly competitive marketplace With nearly 150 exhibitors, the Convenience Retailing Show will be packed with products for the convenience sector. On the food, drink and confectionery front there will be many new ideas to tempt customers' palates, from an exhibitor list that includes Fox's Biscuits, Bernard Matthews Foods, Nestlé, Cadbury Trebor Bassett, United Biscuits, Procter & Gamble, and Diageo plus lots of other major brands. The new launch line up includes Silver Spring which has major plans for this year; Procter & Gamble which has big plans for Sunny Delight and Pringles; and United Biscuits which is unveiling an exciting new development from KP's Hula Hoops. Fox's Biscuits plans to show new products while Burton's Foods will use the show to demonstrate its commitment to product development and brand support. In the past six months it has revitalised Jammie Dodgers, Maryland Cookies, Cadbury Fingers, Wagon Wheels, Viscount and Lyons Biscuits with new products, packaging, recipes and major TV advertising campaigns. Cadbury Trebor Bassett will be majoring on its new white chocolate Cadbury's Dream, on which it is spending £5.5m in advertising this year. The ice cream range and vending solutions will be on show, along with display and promotional opportunities arising from its sponsorship of the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester. Unilever will be unveiling new products and trade initiatives from its three companies, and will have live sampling and cooking demonstrations on its stand. Britvic will feature its portfolio of premium brands and key impulse packs, plus its latest branded chillers complete with planograms. The large confectionery line-up includes Wrigley which will provide merchandising advice on its chewing gum range which the company says delivers 20% of retailers' confectionery countline profit. Boosting profitability in store will be at the forefront of Nestlé Rowntree's stand which is showcasing its display opportunities and ready to go Nescafé hot beverage solutions. Haribo is giving away free stock in a deal available exclusively to show visitors. For every 12 cases ordered through Convenience Distribution Group, located on the same stand, retailers will get one free case of their choice. Participants will also be able to take part in Haribo's cashback promotion on its specially marked drums and pre-pack outers. Other confectionery exhibitors include Barnack UK, featuring its Look-o-Look novelty children's range, and Masterfoods with its new Harry Potter line, Maltesers ice cream and its Dolmio microwaveable pasta. Among the exhibitors who will be focusing on the growing snacking and food on the move sector are Seabrook with its value for money potato crisps sprinkled with sea salt, Fosters Traditional Foods with muffins, flapjacks, cookies and cakes; and Bernard Matthews with its new fresh Pizzahhhh range and branded sandwiches. Country Choice will show its Bake n' Bite bake-off package, while Geo Adams will show its latest savoury pastry products, Taste of Italy pasta salads and luxury cakes. Bel UK targets a range of retail outlets with its cheeses for lunchboxes and cheeseboards, and Jack Link's UK is launching Beef Jerky, an American snack in five flavours and two sizes. Ginsters offers a chance to sample its sandwich and fresh savouries range. Cigarettes and tobacco are important to c-store operators because of the footfall they generate and the big three ­ Imperial Tobacco, Gallaher and Rothmans ­ will attend the show to talk about the latest trade initiatives and merchandising systems. Developments in the cigar market can be discussed with Loretta Cigars which distributes Henri Wintermans premium and Don Tomas handmade cigars. Swedish Match and Ronson International will talk about accessories and lighters. Zig Zag, the UK's second largest cigarette rolling paper brand, plans to unveil a premium product which it says is the first real innovation in the r-y-o sector for many years. Visitors looking to source health, beauty and toiletries products will find them well represented by Lever Faberge, Seal Products and Wilkinson Sword, which is showing its complete shaving range. Bic is showing its new razor products, Comfort Twin, Bic Plus and Classic Lady along with its existing range of disposable single and twin blade razors. It is also featuring stationery items, plus its range of mini, maxi and electronic lighters. Look out for a show offer on the MegaLighter. Crookes Healthcare is showing its brand leading OTC medicines such as Nurofen, Strepsils, Streppies, Optrex and Karvol. Hair accessories ­ branded and own label ­ will be featured by Creative Max Imports, while hosiery brand leader Aristoc is showing its range and its distinctive hanging packaging. The company has no minimum order requirements and will lend a purpose built fixture free. Fragrances to freshen the car and the home will be featured by Eliocell. It is launching Aria, a new perfume bottle car air freshener in four oil-based fragrances. The show also provides an opportunity to update display equipment and signage. Companies include Carepac with merchandising displays; Essential Sales Products whose offers range from acrylic leaflet dispensers, sign hangers and suction cups to adhesives, binding bars and card holders; and Mercury-Phillips which does all types of high street signage. VKF Renzel is also showing a range of quality point of sale units. Geetings cards are a highly profitable business and talking about them at the show will be Card Line which supplies on a risk free consignment basis; Card Connection which has free display options; and Hallmark. Video Box Office, which supplies home entertainment to the convenience sector, will feature its video libraries which encourage customer loyalty, and its retail range of budget videos, DVDs, and games. Its stand will also have special show offers. Refrigeration is always a big feature and this year's line-up includes Verco with more than 60 chiller and freezer models plus Norpe UK, Blighline, and ISA Commercial Refrigeration. Hubbard Commercial is showing its new packaged condensing units for c-stores that require remote low noise refrigeration and Caravell is unveiling its Access cooler, designed for small spaces. A new range of glass door bottle chiller cases allowing more products to be displayed at eye level is to be launched by Hussmann (Europe). The chiller cases have a number of special merchandising features designed to promote impulse sales. And AHT, Austria's leading refrigeration supplier, is launching a jumbo freezer and a narrow multi-deck cabinet for tight spaces. The moneyspinning opportunities of ice cream and frozen treat machines will be demonstrated by Electro Freeze (UK) and Malibu Corporation, whose ranges include frozen yogurt, slush and shake machines. Beverage equipment specialist Bravilor's new products include the Bolero XL42 which can serve nine varieties of coffee and hot chocolate and features a hot water syphon system that won the company an innovation award. Fresh Bouquets' Flowerfete is the leading distributor of fresh flowers and plants to forecourts and convenience stores. It supplies more than 4,500 outlets from 12 depots and will be at the show seeking to expand its service. Mr Bens Pet Supplies, which supplies pre-pack cat, dog, small animal and wild bird foods and accessories, is also looking to expand distribution. The speedy supply of goods to c-stores is the role of the Convenience Distribution Group. Its range includes car care, films, batteries, condoms, soft toys and maps as well as sunglasses, confectionery and forecourt consumables ­ all of which will be featured at the show. CRS will be burgeoning with technology to improve the operation of c-stores. The latest in EPoS solutions will be featured by Point Four, Arciris, Retail Business Solutions, Cunningham's, CTN-Systems and PDI, while Connollys Cash Registers will show Easiscan, a stock control system. Security is a big issue in every store and solutions to various security problems will be featured by the AirTube Group, Fasit Security and Securesafe. Air Link Systems plans to launch a new shopping trolley retention device The company says once a trolley has reached its nominated travel distance, an audible alarm sounds and the left front castor locks. Camelot will again be present, as will PayPoint which collects payments for more than 200 companies and is a significant footfall generator producing over 100 million customer visits a year. Cash machines also generate footfall and among those showing them will be Hanco ATM Systems, Cash Point Machines and Moneybox. Futuristic Technology will provide advice on kiosks whose use is growing as information and advertising points and as customer service terminals. And to help retailers clean up at the end of the day, Kenburn Waste Management and Mil-tek will feature their waste disposal systems. {{FOCUS SPECIALS }}