Coca-Cola has confirmed plans to test a hard seltzer this year under the company’s Topo Chico brand. The beverage will be Coca-Cola’s first entry into the fast-growing hard seltzer market, and it comes on the heels of a successful launch last year of a ready-to-drink alcohol product in Japan...
Coca-Cola has responded to the COVID-19 crisis with a touchless update to the company’s Freestyle fountain. Consumers can choose to scan a QR code with their smartphone camera and use their own phone screen to select and pour a beverage while bypassing the Freestyle’s touchscreen...
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:
Says ‘Absolutely’ Could Support ‘Transparent’ Bottle Bill. On SodaStream US: ‘Just Grow It.’
December 17, 2019
In October, Simon Lowden was named PepsiCo’s first chief sustainability officer. The job made sense for Lowden, whose 23 years at PepsiCo has included leadership posts in food, beverage and international. Lowden’s most recent prior role was as president of PepsiCo Global Foods. Previous roles have included chief marketing officer for PepsiCo North America Beverages and before that PepsiCo International.
This story is a recap of highlights from his Future Smarts conference appearance Dec. 9 in New York.