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Jones Soda expands distribution to Walmart

BY Allison Cerra

SEATTLE Jones Soda has inked a deal to distribute its beverage line in 3,800 Walmart stores.

Walmart officially authorized Jones Soda products on May 3rd and began rolling it out on shelves, with plans to have product in nearly all U.S. stores by the end of May. Under the authorization, Jones has been given three shelf facings for a custom assorted 6-pack of Jones pure cane soda. The 6-pack will include two bottles each of some of Jones’ most popular flavors – green apple, berry lemonade and cream soda – enabling fans and new consumers the opportunity to sample a variety of flavors at once.

“The primary complaint through our customer service feedback is that people can’t find Jones Soda near them,” said Jones CEO William Meissner. “The Walmart deal allows for another one of America’s premier retailers to offer Jones. Walmart greatly expands our distribution footprint and truly makes our product accessible to everyone, which is something the Jones Soda brand has always stood for. Now, almost anyone, anywhere in the U.S. can seek out a nearby store or stumble upon our product and purchase it on the spot. We are incredibly energized by the growth potential this Walmart expansion brings.”

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Coca-Cola awarded for PlantBottle packaging

BY Allison Cerra

ATLANTA Coca-Cola was saluted for its recyclable, PET plastic packaging at the 22nd annual DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation.

Coca-Cola’s PlantBottle packaging — which was launched in December 2009 — earned a gold award for demonstrating breakthrough packaging innovation, Coca-Cola said. The DuPont Award is the packaging industry’s longest running, independently judged global award program. Made of up to 30% plant-based material, PlantBottle packaging is made from renewable sources that is 100% recyclable, like traditional PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic. PlantBottle packaging can be recycled in the existing commercial recycling infrastructure, Coca-Cola said.

 “Our journey has only just begun, but the initial success we have seen in the marketplace along with highly credible recognition like this from DuPont show that we are making progress and delivering packaging innovation in response to consumers, customers and our franchise insights and business needs,” said Scott Vitters, PlantBottle business lead at Coca-Cola.

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Dr Pepper Snapple Group named company of the year at Beverage Forum

BY Allison Cerra

PLANO, Texas Dr Pepper Snapple Group was awarded for its outstanding performance, flavor leadership and innovation at this year’s Beverage Forum, hosted by Beverage Marketing Corp. and Beverage World magazine.

DPS was bestowed with the 2010 Company of the Year award in the large company category, which recognizes one organization with more than $1 billion in revenue. Dr Pepper Snapple Group was launched in 2008.

“Dr Pepper Snapple Group continues to be one of the most vibrant and innovative CSD companies in the industry today and its diverse portfolio of leading brands is one of its greatest strengths. Although the company’s roots are deeply entrenched in CSD history, its ongoing success is a testament to what can be achieved when the right brands and the right people are combined with an entrepreneurial spirit and a commitment to innovation,” said Kevin Francella, co-chair of The Beverage Forum and publisher of Beverage World magazine.

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