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CytoSport’s Muscle Milk partnered with Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw in a charitable marketing partnership.
Last year offered the sports and protein drinks category a big marketing opportunity through the London 2012 Summer Olympics, says Jennifer Zegler, beverage analyst at Chicago-based market research firm Mintel.
The Coca-Cola Co., Atlanta, plans to host events for fans of all ages in the company’s hometown during the 2013 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Men’s Final Four weekend, which also is taking place in Atlanta. Coke Zero, the official fan refreshment of the NCAA, and Powerade, the official sports drink of the NCAA, will be the dominant players in the company’s celebrations, it says.
Cytosport, the Benicia, Calif.-based parent company of Muscle Milk and Muscle Milk Light, launched Muscle Milk Light Peach Mango in 14-ounce ready-to-drink bottles. Peach Mango is the first Muscle Milk Light beverage option to be naturally flavored and sweetened with stevia, monk fruit and cane sugar, the company says.
Sports and protein drinks are transitioning from being separate categories into one overall sports performance market, experts say.
The Coca-Cola Co., Atlanta, announced that Powerade, the official sports drink of the London 2012 Olympic Games, is offering athletes from around the world the opportunity to train with professional athletes and coaches at the Powerade Sports Academy during the Olympics.
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.
With platforms geared toward athletic enthusiasts, sports drinks experienced a resurgence in sales. The total category increased 14.9 percent to more than $3.9 billion in sales, 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. Non-aseptic bottled sports drinks made up most of the category with more than $3.8 billion in sales and a 14.6 percent increase, SymphonyIRI states.
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