Since early March, BD has tracked the COVID-19 crisis through the eyes of beverage executives in the Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and independent bottling systems. By last week, a period of frenzied demand had given way to a more normalized sales pattern, bottlers and distributors said. Some are now bracing for... Story includes direct comments from beverage bottlers and distributors.
Pantry loading this month by US consumers reacting to the COVID-19 crisis wasn’t limited to large hydration categories, according to all-outlet US data provided to BD by Nielsen. As shown in the table on the next page, categories and segments ranging from carbonated soft drinks to kombucha saw significant...
As consumers reacted in March to the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Beverage Digest provided live updates on the impact to the US non-alcoholic beverage industry. Here is that coverage in its entirety.
On March 11, PepsiCo announced an agreement to buy Rockstar Energy for $3.85 billion plus $700 million worth of tax benefits payable over 15 years (BD Email News Alert 3/11/20). Aside from the opportunity to grow Rockstar...
Joins Entrepreneurial Rush to Capitalize on Solutions
February 21, 2020
Here’s what the entrepreneur Tal Shub imagines: A patron walks into a café holding a stylish, re-usable cup that includes a built-in lid and retractable straw. The consumer inserts their cup upside down into a port that resembles a shallow automobile cup holder. In seconds, the port.......this company offers a window into a beverage frontier where entrepreneurs are leveraging consumer concern over plastic waste and looking beyond the bottle to create new commercial opportunities...
Product Targets Supermarket Juice Aisle. Limited Packaging. No Sugar Added.
February 21, 2020
Next month, PepsiCo will launch a new sports drink, Gatorade Juiced, aimed at youth athletes and earmarked for the juice aisle. In an exclusive interview, Gatorade Senior Vice President and General Manager Brett O’Brien said the brand is looking to expand its base by creating a sports drink for pre-high school consumers that includes an ingredient profile attractive to their adult caretakers. “It’s bringing younger athletes into the portfolio with a product that their moms, dads and coaches feel great about,” O’Brien said. “We’re not asking them to step up into base Gatorade at an early age. We’re now creating this product specifically for this generation of athletes.” The launch comes as a critical time for the Gatorade brand...
Globally, as in the US, the diet soda segment has performed better than the regular soda segment as consumers worldwide heed medical advice to reduce sugar consumption and governments tax sugar-sweetened drinks to discourage use. Volume sales for the diet soda segment globally in 2019...
Wide-Ranging Interview Covers Distribution Complexity, "Significant' Planned Production Investment, E-Commerce and More
February 7, 2020
Late last year, Coca-Cola Bottling United opened a new $86 million sales and distribution center in the metro Atlanta town of Union City, just south of Coca-Cola headquarters. The 456,000-sq-ft facility serves 10,000 retail customers in metro Atlanta, covering 2.8 million consumers. As many as 750 employees will manage the warehousing, picking and delivery of 36 million beverage cases per year. Manual order picking has been converted to an automated process built by System Logistics. Marketed as “Vertique,” the system is “an organized, more ergonomic and efficient sequential operation, with less stress on associates and not as labor intensive,” according to Coke United (click HERE for a video of the system). The Union City facility is among a series of investments by Coke United to modernize its distribution system since acquiring new territory, including Coke’s flagship metro Atlanta market in 2017. Last month, Coke United broke ground for construction of a $60 million, 300,000-sq-ft warehouse and sales center in the South Georgia town of Tifton, about an hour’s drive from the Georgia-Florida line. The facility will consolidate inventory from eight older and smaller facilities into a single automated order picking location when it opens by the end of 2021. Birmingham, Alabama-based Coke United, with franchise roots dating back to 1902, covers territory in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. The company is Coca-Cola’s fourth largest US franchise bottler (after Coke Consolidated, Reyes Holdings and Arca’s Coke Southwest Beverages). United distributes 11% of Coca-Cola system bottle/can carbonated soft drink volume in US. Last week, Coke United CEO John Sherman and East Region VP Mike Succo joined officials at the new Union City center for a grand opening attended by Coca-Cola North America President Jim Dinkins. BD sat down for an interview with Sherman.
The following has been edited for clarity and space:
Sees No Dr Pepper Move from KO, PEP; Opportunity in Energy, Hydration; Strong Allied Brand Strategy.
December 17, 2019
Keurig Dr Pepper Chief Commercial Officer Derek Hopkins has been as close as anyone to the merger of Keurig Green Mountain and Dr Pepper Snapple. Hopkins served as chief integration officer for the transaction and before that was president of Keurig Green Mountain’s US business. His experience in the global beverage industry is deep, with stints at Coca-Cola, AB InBev, Bacardi and Guiness Diageo. The following is a recap of his Future Smarts conference interview in Dec. 9 in New York.