News Briefs


CBD Packaging Company Tests Hemp-Based Solutions

a close up of a book

Hippo Premium Packaging, a provider of custom packaging and branding solutions to the cannabis and CBD industries, recently unveiled a new hemp-based, sustainable packaging solution for Hemp Valley Farms (HVF), a CBD manufacturer that uses natural, regenerative farming techniques.

"Hemp Valley Farms came to us to produce their packaging, and after learning about their company, we thought that using a sustainable hemp-based paper was the perfect solution," said Kary Radestock, founder and CEO of Hippo Packaging, in a news release.

Radestock reached out to Mohawk Paper, a North American fine paper mill, to see how its Renewal Hemp paper would measure up to the demands of CBD packaging. Every sheet of Mohawk Renewal Hemp is made with 30% hemp fiber, which is a renewable fiber source that contributes to a sustainable supply chain, according to the release.

"Using hemp-based papers is still rather new," Radestock added. "We wanted to collaborate with the manufacturer to make sure everything was dialed-in and optimized so that the final product would be fantastic."

Hippo produced packaging for three different blends of Hemp Valley Farms' CBD tinctures and is now working on the packaging for HVF's CBD-based cosmetics, balms, muscle rubs and pet products.


Meyers Receives Hormel Foods Award

Minneapolis-based Meyers, a provider of retail brand packaging, product labeling and in-store displays, announced that it received the Hormel Foods 2020 Spirit of Excellence Award in the fall of 2021. The honor recognizes suppliers whose work with Hormel helps the company achieve its key results.

“Our enduring partnership with Meyers is a testament to their service, attention to detail, and quality products,” said Valerie Miller Villafane, head of procurement at Hormel Foods, said in a Meyers news release. “We look forward to continuing our partnership together to help deliver inspired foods worldwide and achieve key operational results.”

“For over 20 years now, Meyers has received this award every year Hormel has given it out,” said Chris Dillon, CEO at Meyers. “That’s the result of hard work from so many different people on teams working across departments and disciplines.”


Frank Mayer: Guide to P-O-P Displays

a desk with a microwave on a counter

P-O-P displays help brands and retailers advertise products and influence purchasing decisions. They are often custom, and they can range from plastic countertop merchandisers near the register to large, freestanding displays on an aisle endcap – and anything in between.

In a recent blog, Frank Mayer marketing specialist Katie Kochelek presented a short list of the most popular P-O-P displays, such as interactive and endcap displays, and outlined the advantages of each.


Canadian Cannabis Retailer Taps DoorDash for Pickup


Canadian retailer Star Buds Cannabis Co. has partnered with DoorDash Technologies Canada to launch cannabis pickup on the platform's Marketplace app. The service initially rolled out across Star Buds locations in Barrie and Innisfil, Ontario, including online ordering and pickup of a range of cannabis products to consumers outside of metropolitan areas. 

"We are excited to partner with DoorDash Canada and enable cannabis pickup on the platform for Star Buds locations," said Taz Turner, chairman and CEO, CordovaCann Corp, which owns Star Buds, in a news release. "We look forward to growing the partnership in the coming months and bringing online cannabis ordering and pickup in locations where permitted. The partnership will grow the business and brand of Star Buds Cannabis Co., exposing more customers to our strong product selection and excellent customer service."

According to the release, Star Buds' philanthropic commitment aligns with DoorDash Canada's values, which prompted the partnership. Star Buds locations across Canada have donated to local charities such as the Christmas Cheer Toy Drive in Barrie and The Main Street Project in Winnipeg.

CordovaCann Corp. is a Canadian-based company focused on building a cannabis products business across multiple jurisdictions, including Canada and the U.S. The company primarily provides services and investment capital to the retail, processing and production vertical markets of the cannabis industry.


Stingray, InStore Audio Network Become One Entity


Stingray Group has completed its full integration with InStore Audio Network after acquiring the company in January. The combined entity of the U.S. and Canadian operations is now named Stingray Advertising. Located throughout North America, this in-store audio advertising network now reaches 140 million shoppers each week in over 20,000 grocery retailers, superstores, discount stores and pharmacies, according to a news release.

Stingray Advertising delivers targeted audio messaging to shoppers in a “captive media environment” at the point-of-purchase, per the release. This integration focuses on leveraging new technology and providing retailers a way to monetize in-store audio while offering CPG and health and beauty care brands a democratized marketing tool to reach shoppers with out-of-home media.

The current network includes retailers such as Ahold Delhaize, Albertsons/Safeway, Brookshires, CVS Pharmacy, Jean Coutu, Metro, Rite Aid, Southeastern Grocers, Tops Markets, Walmart Canada and Weis Market with coverage across Canada and in every designated marketing area (DMA) in the U.S.

“With the recent addition of Walmart Canada into our retail media network plus our use of COMMB [(Canadian Out Of Home Marketing & Measurement Bureau)] and Geopath for proven audience measurement and Hivestack for a versatile programmatic buying solution, we have proven our effectiveness and reliability to our current advertiser base,” said Ryan Fuss, senior vice president of Stingray Advertising, in the release. “Our retail footprint, along with both traditional media buying and programmatic options, positions Stingray Advertising as a top media solution for every brand sold in retail store – as well as non-endemic brands seeking to reach a captive audience of engaged consumers directly in the retail environment.”

In addition to retail media, Stingray Advertising aims to help brands connect to audiences across the Stingray multiplatform ecosystem through broadcast and streaming media, which includes concerts, shows, music videos, TV audio channels and radio stations as well as music and soundscapes across web, mobile and FAST (free ad-supported streaming TV) touchpoints.

Stingray also offers a range of tech-driven solutions to share with retailers to elevate the in-store and customer experience including Stingray Business’ licensed background music and digital signage as well as Chatter by Stingray’s AI-driven customer insights tool that enables brands to take action through their customer experience.

Effective immediately, all brand identity, logos and corporate communication will reflect the Stingray Advertising brand.


Cooler Screens Adds Talent to Leadership & Advisory Teams

a person standing in front of a store

In response to accelerated growth, Cooler Screens, which operates an in-store digital media and merchandising platform for retail, is expanding its leadership and advisory board with top talent to help facilitate the expansion of its platform and improve the in-store experience, according to a news release.  

Cooler Screens' leadership team additions include former Amazon veteran Lindell Bennett as chief revenue officer and Shelly Schaffer as chief financial officer. In addition, Cooler Screens’ chief customer experience and operating officer John Gomez was promoted and will take on additional responsibilities as president while retaining his former responsibilities.

As chief revenue officer, Bennett will focus on helping brands capture the attention of customers already in the aisle, to build brand equity and increase sales simultaneously. His goals include establishing an insights-led revenue organization, strengthening the direct sales team, expanding distribution of Cooler Screens through programmatic partnerships, helping agency partners activate new in-store media opportunities and developing deeper omnichannel measurement for brands.

During his 10 years at Amazon, Bennett held several U.S. roles. He also spent time in Asia, leading the mid-market and enterprise sales teams for Japan, while also launching Amazon's first ad sales team in China. He also started and led the task force that built Amazon's narrative and reporting framework and was a key contributor to its brand-building and omnichannel measurement suites.

As chief financial officer, Schaffer brings more than three decades of experience in financial and strategic planning, investor relations, business development, compliance and governance to her new role at Cooler Screens, where she will be instrumental in accelerating and broadening growth across the ecosystem of retailers, brands, agencies, resellers and programmatic partners. Her extensive background has focused on technology and software, online platforms and branded consumer products in public, private and venture-backed companies, including the Coca Cola Co.,, Yahoo, Mercury Interactive, Catalina Marketing and Nestle.

Gomez, now Cooler Screens' president, chief consumer experience officer and COO, executed Cooler Screens' expansion in Walgreens, Kroger, Giant Eagle, Chevron and CVS Pharmacy stores. Prior to joining Cooler Screens, he was president and CEO of KKR-owned Cardenas Markets. He also served as executive vice president of operations, marketing and merchandising at Trader Joe's and chief operating officer at Argo Tea.

Cooler Screens has also added three growth and innovation experts to the startup's advisory board: Andrew Appel, former president and CEO of the predictive analytics service IRI; Andrew Hill, chief data officer of global CPG marketer Unilever; and John Clavadetscher, who is transitioning from his full-time role as Cooler Screens' president and chief commercial officer.