The National Confectioners Association (NCA) has announced the winners of the 2022 Most Innovative New Product Awards.

Revealed in a ceremony Monday night to kick off the Sweets & Snacks Expo, the Most Innovative New Product Awards recognize the most innovative confectionery and snack products and the companies that created them. These products were developed over the last year and are now available on store shelves or will be made available to shoppers in the coming months. 

“Innovation puts the candy and snack categories in the driver’s seat when it comes to flavor and product trends, and the 2022 Most Innovative New Product Awards continue to highlight those that accelerate us into the future,” said John Downs, NCA president and CEO. “Consumers have been making life at home a little more enjoyable over the past two years by incorporating their favorite treat or snack into their lives in a way that has brought a variety of new flavors and fun to their daily routines.”

Retail leaders representing 85 percent of the confectionery and snack categories’ buying power served as judges across the 13 categories. They ultimately evaluated more than 300 candy and snacks, judging for taste, innovation, packaging and saleability.

The winners of the Most Innovative New Products Awards are as follows:

Best in Show

Natures Strawberries Hyper-Chilled Fresh in Ruby Cacao

Trü Frü, LLC



Lindt & Sprüngli (USA), Inc. 


Nerds Gummy Clusters Very Berry


Gum & Mints

EXTRA Refreshers Fruity Mix Sugar-Free Chewing Gum

Mars Wrigley US 

Salty Snacks

KrackCorn Original Family Size

KrackCorn, LLC 

Sweet Snacks

Reese’s Snack Bar

The Hershey Company 

Meat Snacks

Chile Limon Chicharrones

4505 Meats

Savory Snacks

Cinnamon Healthy Snacking Pecans

Pecan Nation 


Jelly Belly Harry Potter Butterbeer Barrel Tin

Jelly Belly Candy Company


Kinder Holiday Mix Countdown Calendar

Ferrero North America

Gourmet/Premium | Candy

Nutella B-Ready

Ferrero North America 

Gourmet/Premium | Snack

Natures Strawberries Hyper-Dried Fresh and Immersed in Crème

Trü Frü, LLC

The NCA also recognized the Small Business Innovator, which earns less than $500,000 in sales. This year’s award went to Carrot Bacon for its Carolina Smoke variety.

Barry Callebaut also received the 2022 Ruby Award for Supplier Innovation for its WholeFruit Chocolate, a new chocolate format made from pure cacaofruit. Created in 2018 to recognize supplier innovation, Barry Callebaut received the inaugural award for the creation and introduction of Ruby chocolate.

“Innovation in the chocolate and candy industry often starts with our suppliers,” Downs said. “The new flavors, formats and ingredients they develop fuel our industry’s creativity all the way down the confectionery supply chain, all to the benefit of our consumers, who get to enjoy a novel and inventive treat as a result of their innovative spark.”