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Beverage Innovation

Tracking The Drinks Marketplace


Coca-Cola Tests Seltzer Syrups For Carbonation Systems In Germany

Similar to the syrups PepsiCo makes available for its Sodastream carbonation systems, Coke said each bottle of the syrup makes five liters of Fanta Orange, Sprite or the Germany-focused Mezzo Mix, allowing consumers to make their own drinks by adding the flavor to carbonated water. A 33 cl bottle of Coke syrup can make five liters of carbonated beverage. Prices have not been disclosed. Germany was one of the first markets targeted by PepsiCo with its launch of branded syrups for Pepsi and Mountain Dew for SodaStream. PepsiCo acquired SodaStream International in 2018 in a deal worth $3.2 billion. The German tests roll out from this month. 

Aluminum Can Shortage Forces Coca-Cola To Drop Two Aha Flavors

Two variants from the company’s U.S. caffeinated flavored sparkling water brand, Aha, were discontinued because of "ongoing" can shortages tied to a consumer shift to at-home consumption during the coronavirus pandemic. Aha's Black Cherry & Coffee and Apple & Ginger flavors will no longer be available, but the company still plans to launch two new Aha flavors: Raspberry & Acai and Mango & Black Tea. Last week, PepsiCo rolled out its own lightly-caffeinated sparkling water in the U.S., Bubly Bounce.

New Smartwater Range From Coca-Cola

The new Smartwater+ range in the U.S. contains ingredients that claim to either boost mental focus or bring "emotional calmness." Each of the three flavors promise "unique hydration experiences," according to the company. The new flavors include: Smartwater+ Clarity (ginseng and green tea extracts for a mental boost; Smartwater+ Tranquility (ashwagandha and tangerine extracts for a “tranquil feeling”); and Smartwater+ Renew (dandelion and lemon extracts for “’plus up’ moments of revitalization”). Each contains ten calories per 70 cl bottle. An ad campaign featuring brand ambassador Gal Gadot will support the launch.


Stockholders Push Danone To Divest Stake In Chinese Dairy

According to reports, disgruntled Danone shareholders have pushed the company to sell its $2 billion stake in Mengniu dairy later this year to fund stock buybacks and boost shareholder returns. The announcement came hours before Danone’s board met to discuss its response to calls from investors such as Artisan Partners Asset Management for management changes. Danone Chairman Emmanuel Faber’s suggestion that he shed his CEO role was later approved by the board of directors. Danone first took a stake in Mengniu in 2013. Its 9.8 percent holding is held indirectly in a venture with COFCO Corp., Mengniu’s biggest shareholder. Danone said that China will remain highly strategic for the company following the sale. 

Faber Will Shed CEO Role At Danone

Emmanuel Faber will remain chairman at Danone but hand the CEO job to another executive after the board of directors approved splitting the functions. Faber, who suggested the change in management structure after unhappy shareholders called for changes at the top, was given a unanimous vote of confidence by the board. The separation will be effective upon the appointment of a new CEO, for which recruitment has begun. The board also decided to appoint Gilles Schnepp as vice chairman with Cécile Cabanis, and Jean-Michel Severino as lead independent director and chairman of the governance committee.

Cow & Gate Adds Infant Formula Range Made With a2 Protein Milk

The Danone brand claims that its Simply a2 range will be the only one in major U.K. retailers made with milk sourced from cows that naturally produce a2 protein milk. Available in an 800 g Eazypack format, the range covers all stages of baby feeding in three variants: Infant Milk (from birth); Follow-On Milk (from six months); and Toddler Milk (from one year). The a2 protein milk in Simply A2 comes from ‘carefully selected’ cows that naturally produce only the a2 beta-casein protein. According to the company, Interest in a2 protein milk has been rapidly growing around the world in recent years. Seven a2 protein formula milks launched in the last six months worldwide. The roll out in the U.K. will begin with Boots, and will be followed by Tesco and Sainsbury’s in April.

Danone Brand Complan Unveils Food Supplement Beverage

Acquired by Danone in 2011, the brand’s new On The Go! energy-focused range will be released in the U.K. in strawberry, vanilla, and cappuccino flavors in packs of four. The drinks contain 9.8 g of protein and 21 vitamins, including B6, B12 and iron, which have been linked to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue. The range is available now in Tesco and in selected Boots stores at an RRP £6.00 ($8.35).

Keurig Dr Pepper

Future Is Rosy, Predicts Keurig Dr Pepper CEO

Bob Gamgort said the company expects 2021 to be “challenging and unpredictable,” but the final year of the merger commitments will feature strong growth that will be surpass its three-year merger target of two to three percent average annual growth. The company reported a net sales increase of 4.5 percent to $11.62 billion in 2020, thanks to sales of its coffee pods and branded soft drinks. The company experiences a strong finish to 2020, with fourth-quarter net sales rising by 6.4 percent to $3.12 billion, driven by market share gains across its portfolio and more households using the Keurig system. Operating income was $2.48 billion for the full-year, compared to $2.38 billion last year, a 4.3 percent increase driven by strong sales.

Other Companies

7-Eleven Boosts Own-Brand Drinks Lineup With Sparking Mineral Water

The Irving, Texas-based convenience retailer has launched Italian import Serafina, a sparkling mineral water created for 7-Eleven and available in Original, Organic Lime and Organic Lemon Ginger flavors. The new product launched with an SRP of $1.79 per 16.9-ounce bottle and a limited time two-for-one promotion. The company says Serafina water is sourced from a natural Italian spring, then carbonated and bottled in the Apennine Mountains. In addition to Serafina, 7-Eleven sells other BFY drinks, including Triton Energy and 7-Select Cold-Pressed Juices.

U.K.’s HotTea Mama Introduces Tea Targeting Menopause Symptoms

The two new blends – Take a Pause and Over the Moon – are designed to naturally support the body through menopause and the challenges of periods. Take a Pause is a blend of green tea and herbal teas intended to support the body from perimenopause to post menopause. The blend includes raspberry leaf, ginseng, gingko biloba, licorice and valerian; which the company says support common symptoms such as irregular periods, heavy blood flow, anxiety, lack of sleep and hot flushes. Over the Moon tea is for women with premenstrual stress and tension, irregular periods and conditions linked to fertility, such as endometriosis and PCOS. The herbal infusion features raspberry leaf, chamomile flowers, gingko, spearmint, dandelion root, and rose petals. The two, available online for £6 ($8.35) a box, join the brand’s portfolio of pregnancy and breastfeeding teas.

U.K.’s EauLab Debuts Sparkling Water Enhanced With Fiber

Committed to helping consumers achieve the recommended daily fiber consumption level of 25 grams, London-based beverage start-up EauLab has launched a sparkling water containing 7.5 grams of “invisible” prebiotic inulin fiber. The fiber acts as a food source, the company says, and stimulates the growth of good bacteria essential to maintaining a balanced intestinal flora. The water is free from sugar and sweeteners, vegan friendly, and contains 14 calories per 100 ml. 

Wtrmln Wtr’s New Line Claims Functional Benefits

The Denver-based company, owned by Caribe Juice, says its Hydration, Recover, Immunity, and Antioxidant products feature the hydration benefits of watermelon juice plus acerola, sea salt, turmeric, cayenne, hibiscus, ginger juice, or tart cherry. The new functional blends are available at Whole Foods Market, Target, Albertsons and Amazon with a suggested retail price of $3.49.
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