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Beverage Innovation

Tracking The Drinks Marketplace


Coca-Cola To Launch Line Of Mixers For Dark Spirits

Coca-Cola in June will introduce in the U.K. a range of mixers made specifically for dark spirits such as whisky, bourbon, and rum. Developed with the help of several bartenders from various countries, Coca-Cola Signature Mixers will be available in four flavors – Smoky Notes, Spicy Notes, Herbal Notes, and Woody Notes – packaged in a contemporary version of the glass bottle first used by Coca-Cola in 1894. A brand manager at Coca-Cola Great Britain said the idea was inspired by Coke’s longtime “synergy with dark spirits and classic cocktails,” including rum and Coke, whisky and Coke, and the Cuba Libre.

Fonterra, Coco-Cola Partner To “Capture Opportunities” In Southeast Asia

New Zealand-based dairy cooperative Fonterra and Coca-Cola are partnering to build a broader dairy beverage market presence –and “capture opportunities” – in Southeast Asia. The alliance, which combines Fonterra’s expertise in dairy nutrition with Coca-Cola’s sales and distribution network, has already launched a range of dairy-based products in Vietnam under Coke’s Nutriboost brand. The RTD products are blends of milk and fruit juice. The companies say they plan to introduce a range under Fonterra’s Anchor brand along with new products in Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines.


Nespresso To Spend $10M To Help Revive Distressed Coffee Industries In Certain Countries

Nespresso has launched a program to restore coffee farming in regions where it is under threat. Launched via the AAA Sustainable Quality Program, the Reviving Origins initiative is working with farmers where conflicts, economic hardships, or environmental disasters have occurred. The company is investing nearly $10 million over the next five years to revive the coffee industries in certain countries to encourage rural economic development. The Reviving Origins program is part of Nespresso’s overall commitment to invest $490 million from 2014 - 2020 in its sustainability program, The Positive Cup. The announcement coincides with the launch of new single-origin coffees from Eastern Zimbabwe and Caquetá, Colombia. 

Other Companies

How Independent Retailers Can Boost Soft Drink Sales By Heeding Consumer Trends

New research from Lucozade Ribena Suntory (LRS) advises independent retailers in the U.K. to focus on the changing needs and shopping behaviors of consumers to grow their soft drink sales. Retailers could grow sales by an aggregate $234 million over the next three years by paying attention to two key trends and by encouraging four changes in shopper behavior. Consumers, for example, are pursuing more active lifestyles that require drinks that deliver mental and physical support (a$58 million opportunity); and health-conscious consumers are looking for drinks such as juices and smoothies that deliver “enjoyable wellness” ($32 million). Meanwhile, retailers should be: encouraging shoppers to choose soft drinks with meals and snacks ($25 million); getting affluent shoppers to trade up to premium soft drinks once a month ($39 million); getting lower-income shoppers to switch regular soft drinks for low- and no-sugar variants ($39 million); and getting health-conscious consumers to make six more purchases of water over 12 months, by offering interesting flavors and infusions ($42 million).

NBA’s 76ers Nurture Hydration Drink Start-Up Hydrant

Start-up sports beverage company Hydrant is taking on two heavyweight contenders – Gatorade and Powerade – with a powdered hydration mix purportedly containing four times the electrolytes and 80 percent less sugar than a typical sports drink. The "rapid hydration mix" is sold in packs of 30 at $1 a serving (less if packs of 60, 90 or 120 are purchased) on its website and on Amazon. Hydrant comes in lime and grapefruit and soon a blood orange variant. Launched in 2017 by two 29-year-olds, including an Oxford-trained biologist, Hydrant is being nurtured in the Innovation Lab of the NBA's Philadelphia 76ers. The Lab, which recently helped Hydrant close a $2 million funding round, gives companies like Hydrant free office space, food, housing, and legal advice for at least six months. Other professional sports teams with incubators or investment arms include the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks, the NFL's Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos and San Francisco 49ers, and MLB's Los Angeles Dodgers.

India’s ITC Is Expanding Distribution Of Its RTD Milk Drinks To More Of The Country

Indian conglomerate ITC is expanding its presence in RTD milk-based beverages from the southern regions to the entire country as it pursues a ten percent first-year market share. The company launched Sunfeast Wonderz Milk last December. India’s milkshake market is valued at $144 million. Kolkata-based ITC is also planning to export its dry fruits-based dairy beverage Badam to Dubai and Saudi Arabia. The company expects to focus only in the Eastern part of India for the packaged milk business, where there is less competition, at least for the foreseeable future. The company is also planning to launch vegetable juices and is evaluating opportunities in the water market.

Lost Sheep Coffee’s Product Comes In Fully Compostable Wooden Capsules

U.K.-based coffee roaster and supplier Lost Sheep Coffee has released a range of compostable wooden coffee capsules compatible with Nespresso coffee machines. Made from lignin, a substance derived from wood bark and a waste product of the paper processing industry, the airtight capsules will compost to nothing in weeks, the company says. The 100 percent plastic free capsules keep the coffee fresh for more than twelve months despite the absence of plastic seals and glue. Made from single-origin five percent Arabica beans from Brazil, the coffee is available in two flavors (Smooth Journey and Funky Camper) in the U.K. at a suggested retail price of $5.16 per box of 10 capsules. 

7-Eleven Adds Frozen Glacéau Vitaminwater To Sugar-Free Slurpee Lite Lineup

Texas-based C-store chain 7-Eleven has added a new Slurpee Lite drink, the first glacéau vitaminwater Chill carried by the stores. The company says it and glacéau chose blueberry-lavender as the featured flavor for the launch. The frozen drink is naturally flavored, contains no sugar, and just 20 calories per 8-ounce serving. According to 7-Eleven, botanical extracts complement fruit flavors and have been popular ingredients in desserts, high-end chocolates and mixed drinks in the last few years. The new Slurpee Lite flavor echoes the newest bottled vitaminwater flavor, the Ice side of a "Fire and Ice" flavor rollout. The vitaminwater Fire flavor is Spicy watermelon-lime. 

British ACV Maker Adds Fruit Juice To Ease Into The U.K. Market

London-based Lost Coast Food Co. is betting that consumers in the U.K. will take to apple cider vinegar (ACV)with as much gusto as Americans. The company believes it can transform apple cider vinegar from a niche choice into an everyday product in the U.K. by combining fruit juice and a shot of ACV, making a sparkling beverage more palatable for the British market. Founder Thomas Spillane says that making the drinks palatable, keeping the sugar content low, and using all-natural ingredients – 40 calories a bottle –were the key criteria for the drinks. Lost Coast’s Sparkling Apple Cider Vinegar Juices come in three flavors: mango, turmeric & ginger; strawberry, hibiscus & rose; and blueberry, elderberry & lemon. The shelf life is 18 months; the products can be stored in ambient temperatures but should be consumed chilled.

Kalimarak of India Launches 30 New Carbonated Beverages

India’s Kalimark Group of Companies, manufacturers of carbonated drinks such as Bovonto and Vibro, have launched 30 new variants under the Bovonto, Zypsy, and Ilani brands, including juices, coconut water, mineral water, and corn rava and flour. Launched by two film actors and a chef, the products are available in 180 ml tetra packs. 

Strong Global Growth Expected In Coconut-Based Products Market

Dairy alternatives made with coconut have been a mainstay of the plant-based beverage trend, and a new report says it’s going to stay that way for a while. The market for coconut-based beverages and other products, especially in North America and Europe, will continue growing steadily, with a CAGR of more than seven percent expected over the next 10 years, generating more than $500 million. Major drivers for the demand for dairy alternatives include: an increase in the frequency of lactose intolerance and dairy allergies, preference for plant-based alternatives, and increase in calorie-related concerns. The global coconut products industry – divided into coconut “milk” powder and coconut “cream” powder – are used in beverages, salad dressings, Asian soups, curries, seasoned rice, pancakes, chocolate products, milkshakes and jams.
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