Beverage Industry

Blends point to a juicy future

July 11, 2011
Cranberry Juice

The juice and juice drinks market saw new products that combined flavors and explored sweetener profiles. Minimal growth took place in both the shelf-stable bottled juice and juice drinks category as well as refrigerated juice and juice drinks, an upside compared to last year’s slight decrease for bottled juices and relatively flat sales for refrigerated offerings.

Orange juice remained the top-selling refrigerated juice although sales remained relatively flat. No. 1 selling orange juice brand Tropicana Pure Premium saw its sales decrease 4.1 percent to more than $892.8 million and had its market share dip 1.3 percent, according to SymphonyIRI Group, Chicago, for the 52 weeks ending May 15 in U.S. supermarkets, drug stores, gas and convenience stores and mass merchandise outlets, excluding Wal-Mart.

The Coca-Cola Co.’s brands experienced mixed results. The Simply brand continued to grow sales with an 18.2 percent increase in measured channels, while the company’s Minute Maid Premium decreased 13.7 percent, according to SymphonyIRI data. Its Minute Maid and Minute Maid Premium Kids Plus brands grew 10,114.1 percent and 11.6 percent, respectively.

Weather conditions have affected the category. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service’s Statistics Board released its forecast of 2010-2011 Florida orange production, which is predicted to be 140 million boxes, this is down from the December 2010 report of 143 million boxes.

In line with reduced forecasts, PepsiCo announced it will raise prices for its Tropicana juice line, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Coca-Cola Co. also announced price increases to its Simply and Minute Maid lines.

The refrigerated fruit drink category grew 6.7 percent for $726.6 million in sales, while lemonade also performed well for refrigerated juice and juice drinks with a 16.1 percent increase for $382.9 million in sales, according to SymphonyIRI data.

Shelf-stable bottled juice and juice drinks saw fruit drinks, its largest category, increase 9.1 percent for more than $1.4 billion in sales. Hawaiian Punch remained on top with more than $183.3 million in sales, which is a 1.3 percent increase, SymphonyIRI states.

The cranberry juice cocktail market saw a 2.4 percent decrease for $825.4 million in sales. Top brand Ocean Spray Cranberry Cocktail remained flat for the category for $390 million in sales and increased market share 1 percent, based on SymphonyIRI data.

The juice and juice drinks category saw companies release products that addressed the natural and low-calorie segments of the market. Old Orchard Brands introduced Cranberry Naturals, which contains 40 percent less sugar than traditional cranberry juice varieties and is sweetened with a blend of sugar and Truvia, a stevia-based sweetener, the company says.

PepsiCo expanded its Trop50 line of reduced calorie juices with last month’s introduction of Lemonade and Raspberry Lemonade varieties. The juices contain 50 percent less sugar and calories than traditional lemonade varieties and are sweetened with PureVia stevia-based sweetener.

Companies also took to blending flavor profiles when developing new juice products. The Campbell Soup Co. added to its V8 V-Fusion vegetable and fruit juice product lineup with Concord Grape Raspberry and Concord Grape Raspberry Light. The products blend grape juice with the juice of apples, raspberries, sweet potatoes, carrots and additional fruits and vegetables. BI