Record recycling rate

Honest Tea, an independent operating unit of The Coca-Cola Co., reported that it recycled 108,704 containers at its Great Recycle events, which took place throughout the country during Earth Month in April. This marks an increase of 212 percent from the amount collected at events during Earth Month 2013. During the course of the month, the Great Recycle tour covered the Washington, D.C., metro area, New York City, Texas, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, California and Missouri. One 30-foot-tall and six 12-foot-tall recycling bins were set up throughout the country at grocery stores, college campuses and environmental events. At each stop, recyclers were educated about the importance of recycling and rewarded for on-site exchanges of empty glass, plastic and aluminum containers.


Duff down under 

Last month, Australians who “can’t get enough of that wonderful Duff” finally were able to try the official Duff Beer enjoyed by Homer Simpson on “The Simpsons.” The brew became available in 355-ml cans at BWS and Dan Murphy’s liquor stores in Australia on May 28. For consumers seeking an authentic drinking experience, the beer made its debut a few days early at a pop-up Moe’s Tavern located at the Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel near Sydney. The bar also served up Springfield favorites, including Krusty Burgers, Duffalo Wings and Lard Lad doughnuts.


May the best doodle win

 Taking a cue from consumers who have been doodling on its cups for years, Starbucks Coffee Co. hosted a White Cup Contest, which ended last month. The contest invited consumers in the United States and Canada to decorate a Starbucks cup with customized art, take a picture of it, and submit the design through social media using the hashtag #WhiteCupContest. The winning design will be printed on a limited-edition Starbucks reusable plastic cup. Starbucks originally debuted its $1 reusable cup in January 2013. Consumers who use the eco-friendly cup receive a $0.10 discount for each refill in the cup. 


All for the ‘Applause’

Although beverage brands often can be found behind the scenes and in sponsorship roles at events, Absolut is moving its presence center stage during pop artist Lady Gaga’s artRave: The ArtPop Ball tour. As part of the performer’s theatrical set, Absolut will set up its Absolut ArtPop Lounge on the concert stage. Two fans at each show will be chosen in real time to watch the concert from the on-stage bar and sip custom cocktails like the Absolut Gaga, which mixes ginger ale, apple sparkling cider, grapefruit and Absolut vodka. 


Reels Unleashed

Mountain Dew is bringing its fans closer to the action of
“X-Men: Days of Future Past” with an international, fan-focused digital program. Throughout its seven-week “Unleash Your X” campaign, the brand will unlock exclusive content on its Facebook page that takes fans behind the scenes and deeper into the action. The exclusive content includes interviews with film stars like Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence and Halle Berry as well as analyses of the characters’ journeys throughout the movie. The campaign also includes 30- and 60-second TV spots that take fans on a “neon liquid journey” through the movie.


Island time

As part of a new digital campaign, Kona Brewing Co. is inviting consumers of legal drinking age to take a break and relax. The company’s new “Dear Mainland” spots feature two Hawaiian brothers who comment on “common mainlander customs,” such as multi-tasking and a too-short happy hour, and encourage mainlanders to stop and focus on the parts of life that matter most, like family and friends. To further capture the brand’s “Liquid Aloha” message and Hawaii’s distinct cultural perspective, the spots were shot on location on the Big Island with a local cast. The campaign is supported by TV, radio, online and outdoor elements that promote Kona Brewing’s Longboard Island Lager and Big Wave Golden Ale.


Cocoa power

Olympian and champion speed skater Apolo Ohno is coming out of retirement to take on a new challenge: the 2014 Ironman World Championship, as part of the Built With Chocolate Milk campaign. The Milk Processor Education Program will track Ohno’s journey in an eight-episode Web series titled “Mission: Apolo” as he prepares for the 140.6-mile endurance competition on Oct. 11. The series will capture his training and recovery routines as well as showcase how chocolate milk fuels him through his workouts. 


Sauza saddles up

Following its “Make It With A Fireman” and “Make It With A Lifeguard” campaigns, Beam Suntory Inc.’s Sauza brand is inviting fans to make yet another Margarita, but this time with a charming cowboy and his trusty steed. As part of the year-long campaign, the Sauza Cowboy will charm fans through a digital and social content series that includes YouTube tutorials, Instagram videos, Pinterest boards and more that will help fans learn how to make do-it-yourself crafts as well as the perfect Sauza Margarita. Starring alongside the Sauza Cowboy throughout the campaign are Sauza Blue 100% Agave tequila and Sauza Sparkling Margaritas, which are available in Original (Lime), Wild Berry, Mango Peach and Watermelon flavors.