INDIANAPOLIS ( TheStreet) -- Super Bowl Sunday saves the spotlight for pizza, wings, chips and pretzels, but what about the products that make those treats better?
The National Retail Federation predicts Super Bowl-watching consumers will spend $64 apiece preparing for the big game this year. Of that game day spending, more than 69% of it is going toward food and beverages, and nobody's particularly shy about suggesting where that spending should occur.
Papa John's (PZZA) shells out millions to be the NFL's official pizza sponsor and to hold Super Bowl-tied promotions including a pizza-and-soda wager with America on the outcome of the coin toss. Buffalo Wild Wings' (BWLD) entire big-beer, big-screen, big-batches-of-wings experience is basically a 364-day pregame for Super Bowl Sunday. Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD), meanwhile, seems content to hurl money at Super Bowl broadcasters until fans buy its fizzy yellow beer. Despite A-B spending $239 million on Super Bowl ads within the past year, though, the Beer Institute says the two weeks before the Super Bowl is still only the seventh-most-popular beer-buying period behind the run-ups to Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, Labor Day, Christmas, Easter and Thanksgiving.But what about the food industry's unsung heroes -- the companies that make sure those wings have a place to land and that beer drinkers never have to put their lips to a can? The folks who protect your pizza from becoming a cold, folded mess before it gets to your house? The people who turn those bland potato chips into super snack shovels? We took a look at the most popular Super Bowl products and found four essential accessories or ingredients that not only get overlooked, but bring in a big economic haul of their own:
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