As the weather heats up for summer, the lemonade market also is heating up to quench consumers’ thirsts in new ways. The sweet, lemony beverage often is considered one of the classic beverages of summer, inspiring kids’ lemonade stands and afternoons on the patio drinking lemonade. However, this beverage continues to prove that it’s more than a classic drink by evolving to keep up with the times.

For example, lemonade has kept up with flavor trends over the years, mixing with other fruit flavors like strawberry, raspberry or watermelon and even blending with iced tea, another summer afternoon beverage.

Beyond flavor trends, lemonade continues to keep up with the beverage market by expanding into new beverage categories. Although lemonade has long been established in the powdered drink mix, juice drink, carbonated soft drink and even flavored malt beverage markets, recently the lemonade flavor has been popping up in the energy drink and liquid concentrate categories as well.

This spring, Big Red Inc.’s Hydrive Energy Water brand added a Honey Lemonade variety to its lineup of functional waters. The new variety is meant to invoke the feeling of summer and offer the functional benefits of caffeine and vitamins, the company says.

In the liquid concentrates market, Kraft Foods Group Inc.’s Country Time brand is making it even easier to make the summertime beverage with the release of its Country Time Lemonade Starters. Consumers can mix the lemonade liquid concentrate into a pitcher or glass of water to prepare as many servings as desired. 

 As lemonade continues to keep up with these changing times, the beverage market shows that it literally can make lemons into lemonade to keep growing. It’ll be interesting to watch this classic drink continue to evolve to claim a stake in even more beverage categories.