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Nestlé revamps sparkling water offerings

BY Gisselle Gaitan

Taking a cue from premium brands of sparkling water, Nestlé Waters has decided to update its portfolio by updating its line of products. In February, consumers will notice new flavors alongside new bottle designs and packaging.

Six brands under the Stamford, Conn.-based company will see changes: Poland Spring, Deer Park, Zephyrhills, Ozarka, Ice Mountain and Arrowhead. Aside from changing packaging design, each will add additional flavors and debut 12-oz. sized cans. The new options will feature lively lemon, lemon lime, zesty lime, orange, triple berry, summer strawberry, raspberry lime, black cherry, pomegranate lemonade and simply bubbles.

“Following rapid growth over the past few years, the sparkling water category is now mature enough for us to make a significant investment in developing this extensive line of mainstream sparkling offerings from our regional spring water brands, each of which is the top-selling still spring water brand in its market,” Antonio Sciuto, executive vice president and chief marketing officer of Nestlé Waters North America, said.

According to Euromonitor, the sparkling water category grew 70% from 2011 to 2016, and it’s expected to reach $3.1 billion by 2022. Another huge change within the brand is the use of real spring water as a primary ingredient, the company said.

“As consumers increasingly choose healthy beverages over sugary soft drinks and juices, they are looking for exciting new options. Now is the time to give millions of Americans the sparkling product they have been missing — combining the regional spring water brands they love with delicious natural flavors and added bubbles in both bottles and cans,” Sciuto said.

Retailers such as supermarkets, club stores, conveniences stores and chain drug stores will see a change in:

  • Proprietary bottle design – a sleek, elegant PET bottle design that resembles vintage glass, is more comfortable to hold and highlights the movement of sparkling bubbles;
  • Eye-catching label – more prominent branding and fruit imagery, as well as a new colored cap to accentuate visual brand cues and distinguish from competitors;
  • Bold new case pack visuals – vibrant and colorful fruit graphics designed to capture attention on shelf and highlight flavor varieties;
  • Cans with colorful fruit graphics – offering 12 oz. cans, preferred by some customers, in all markets; and
  • Rainbow packs – popular flavor combinations in 24-pack bottles and cans to encourage flavor trial.

“Consumers are choosing sparkling water at an unprecedented rate,” Sciuto said. “We already have great equity in our Regional Spring Water brands, and we hope that, as our existing customers enter the sparkling category, they will choose our brands first. With our ten great flavor options, they now have a whole new way to enjoy the spring water they love.”

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Cherryvale Farms intros instant mug cake mixes

BY Gisselle Gaitan

Makers of the Everything But The… baking mixes, Cherryvale Farms, has added a new line of microwaveable instant mug cake mixes. The Instant Indulgence line, which provides an individual with a cake in over a minute, and comes in three flavors — Brownie In A Minute, Salted Caramel Chocolate Cake In A Minute and Birthday Cake In A Minute.

“We’re thrilled to be the among the first natural foods brands to introduce a rich, delicious, instant dessert that you can create in the microwave,” Cherryvale Farms CEO Lindsey Rosenberg said. “Now, when that 3 p.m. slump hits, instead of visiting the café counter or vending machine, anyone can make a warm, delicious dessert in no time. For those special occasions, Birthday Cake In A Minute means you can celebrate anywhere, anytime, without the work.”

Instant Indulgence products are plant-based, egg-free, dairy-free, nut-free and made without preservatives, artificial colors and flavors, the Santa Cruz, Calif.-based company said.

Cherryvale Farms Instant Indulgence is available for purchase in a carton of six individual baking mixes, and can be found on the company’s website, Amazon and select retail locations throughout the nation.

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Kroger’s Simple Truth clears $2 billion in annual sales

BY Michael Johnsen

Kroger announced Thursday its Simple Truth brand has achieved $2 billion in annual sales.

“Simple Truth is a brand that has earned our customers’ trust through clean labels, fantastic flavors and affordability since its launch five years ago,” Robert Clark, Kroger’s senior vice president of merchandising, said. “Simple Truth has become the second-largest brand sold in our stores, and Kroger is proud to have led the way in making this category more mainstream and accessible, feeding our customers’ appetites for natural, organic and free-from products.”

Earlier this month, Kroger launched its largest-ever own brands customer sales promotion, featuring savings on thousands of Simple Truth and Simple Truth Organic items.

The Simple Truth brand now offers more than 1,400 unique products across multiple categories, including grocery, meat, produce, deli, bakery, baby, household essentials, personal care and Fair Trade Certified.

Kroger introduced Simple Truth in its fourth quarter 2012. With the help of 84.51° insights, Simple Truth will continue to innovate and introduce new affordable items in 2018 that align with customer trends, including increasingly popular categories like beverage, snacking and non-animal proteins.

These growing trends have already inspired the Kroger Our Brands innovation team to develop exciting new items like Simple Truth Organic sports drinks, Simple Truth Organic sparkling coconut waters, Simple Truth fruit and nut bars and Simple Truth meatless entrees.

Simple Truth products are exclusive to the Kroger Family of Stores and customers can purchase the brand in a variety of ways: in a store; through ClickList; or Vitacost.com for ship-to-home delivery.

“If our brands were on the Fortune 500, it would rank No. 138,” Clark said. “Our brands [are] shaping the way we are redefining the customer experience as outlined in our Restock Kroger plan.”

Earlier this month, the Cincinnati retailer announced it is also investing an incremental $500 million in human capital over the next three years as part of its Restock Kroger plan. Kroger announced last week that they are actively recruiting experienced retail and digital and technology talent for new and open corporate and store management roles across its family of companies.

 

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