CHICAGO — Products hitting convenience store shelves next year tap into consumer desire for portable protein, premium beverages and sophisticated flavor pairings.

Drawing more than 20,000 industry professionals, the 2017 NACS Show, hosted by the National Association of Convenience Stores and held Oct. 17-20 in Chicago, features the latest innovations from hundreds of exhibiting companies.

Convenience store retailer confidence is up, fueled in part by strong sales of in-store items in the first nine months of the year, according to a recent survey from the National Association of Convenience Stores. Sixty percent of convenience retailers reported higher in-store sales over the prior-year period, while 20 percent said in-store sales were lower compared to the year before. New foodservice offerings continue to boost the optimism among convenience store operators.

Among innovation at the 2017 NACS Show, convenience items from Tyson Foods feature handheld, single-serve portions for on-the-go eating. Products include a range of Hillshire Farm Sausage Rolls, featuring smoked sausage wrapped in flavored bread, Tyson Single-Serve Chicken Nuggets in spicy and original varieties, and a line of Fresh-Cut Sandwiches from AdvancePierre, featuring transparent packaging with a recessed rigid lid to retain freshness.

Click for a slideshow of new products featured at the 2017 NACS Show.