Companies across the supply chain have embraced sustainability as an overarching term for better business practices. Through the years, corporate definitions have expanded beyond decreasing packaging waste and water usage to the introduction of functional products and employee wellness programs. Indeed, offering a standard definition of “sustainability,” not to mention its key issues, can be difficult.
Although energy drinks were not immune from the effects of the economy, the category has shown its ability to grow in sales. Energy drink sales increased 14 percent to more than $5.9 billion in sales for the 52 weeks ending June 12 in supermarkets, drug stores, gas and convenience stores and mass merchandise outlets, excluding Walmart, according to SymphonyIRI Group, Chicago. The energy shots category also posted strong numbers with a 31.6 percent increase generating $1 billion in sales during the same time period.
White Rock Beverages grows, evolves into niche markets
August 11, 2011
Around the 1900s, the White Rock brand was almost synonymous with “water,” says Larry Bodkin, president of Whitestone, N.Y.-based White Rock Beverages. It was even larger than Coca-Cola and Pepsi at the time, he claims. In fact, White Rock water was used instead of church-supplied holy water at Gloria Vanderbilt’s christening; White Rock was featured at the coronation of England’s King Edward VII; and Charles Lindbergh launched his historic flight from New York to Paris by smashing a bottle of White Rock sparkling water over his plane, the company says.
It’s one of the largest independent bottlers in California, but Nor-Cal Beverage Co. Inc., Sacramento, Calif., is more than just a contract packager. In addition to its successful co-packing business, which operates production facilities in Sacramento and Anaheim, Nor-Cal also is an Anheuser-Busch distributor in Northern California and markets its own Go Girl line of energy drinks. The family-owned company was started by Roy G. Deary in 1937 as a franchise of Hires Bottling Co., explains Deary’s granddaughter and current president and chief executive officer of Nor-Cal Beverage, Shannon Deary-Bell. The franchise bottled and distributed Canada Dry, Dr Pepper and RC Cola brands in the Sacramento area.
Established brands continue to lead the drink mix category, although some varieties did experience contraction in the last year. The overall drink mix category grew 1.6 percent for more than $609.7 million in sales for the 52 weeks ending May 15 in U.S. supermarkets, drug stores, gas and convenience stores and mass merchandise outlets, excluding Wal-Mart, according to SymphonyIRI Group, Chicago. Fruit drink mixes made up a majority of the category with $590 million in sales, which represents a 1.6 percent growth.
The frequently asked question, “What should I have to drink?” was the inspiration for Diageo’s flavored malt beverage (FMB) strategy. This summer’s advertising for Diageo’s Smirnoff Premium Malt Mixed Drinks answers that question featuring a “Fridgetender,” a portable bartender character who appears in refrigerators and coolers at the right time. In addition to Smirnoff Premium Malt Mixed Drinks, Diageo’s FMB lineup also includes the recently launched Jeremiah Weed FMBs and Smirnoff On The Rocks, which is a multi-serve version of the Premium Malt Mixed Drinks.
Beverage Industry provides an in-depth look at the performances and trends in non-alcohol and alcohol categories in the past year. From carbonated soft drinks to water to wine and spirits, the report includes updated statistics from SymphonyIRI Group as well as new products, industry trends and forecasts. See the complete pull-out section in Beverage Industry’s July 2011 issue.
Obesity continues to be a significant health issue in the United States and health-conscious consumers continue to look for functional products that promise weight management-related benefits. In their quest for wellness, consumers are learning more about the benefits of protein and fiber. In addition, some consumers are searching for what Ram Chaudhari, senior executive vice president and chief scientific officer of Schnectady, N.Y.-based Fortitech Inc. calls a “magic bullet” for weight loss and management solutions.
To continually improve its capabilities as a contract packager, Nor-Cal Beverage Co. Inc., Sacramento, Calif., has made investments exceeding $100 million in its two facilities in California. The improvements have placed the third-generation family-owned company on track to produce 45 million cases of product in 2011 for companies such as The Coca-Cola Co., Hansen’s Natural and Ferolito, Vultaggio & Sons.
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.