Here’s a math problem for you: if the show floor at Natural Products Expo West 2014 encompassed over 1 million square feet, how big do you think the proverbial elephant in the room (in this case, the Anaheim Convention Center) would have to be? Gargantuan, for sure, and for beverage exhibitors at the event, it was clear that the mammoth in the room is known as Whole Foods. The clout and sway of the natural grocer was in full display at Expo West.
Leaning on high-pressure processing (HPP) as a way to bring its super-premium juices to a growing class of health-focused consumers, Suja has quickly emerged as significant player in the rapidly expanding field of raw juice companies.
“To some extent, we’ve become like WD-40.” – Manoj Bhargava, founder and CEO of Living Essentials, the marketer of 5 Hour Energy. At a glance, it may not be the most elegant of comparisons, but when one considers the utter domination that each product shares over its competitors, the analogy is crystal clear. In the same way that there is no “category” for WD-40, Bhargava considers energy shots to be a one-horse stable.
As part of BevNET’s continuing 2012 NACS show coverage, the BevNET editorial team examines key trends seen at the show including the boom of line extensions from top energy drink companies, the overall trend of natural and functional products crossing into the c-store channel, how packaging innovation has spurred growth in energy, relaxation, and better-for-you segments, and why some beverage companies are tailoring new products to small, but emerging, consumer sets.
After an energetic and dramatic debut at BevNET Live Summer 2011, BevNET reprised the “New Beverage Showdown” at our recent winter conference in Santa Monica. The beverage brand competition – developed in partnership with Coke’s Venturing and Emerging Brands Unit – offers the founders of six new companies the opportunity to showcase their business plan and products in front of a panel of expert judges. Here are the first three presentations, from Joia, HDX, and Jetway; you’ll be able to view the remaining three tomorrow.
With over 170 exhibitors showcasing their wares, beverage companies were represented in full force as the 2011 NACS show stormed into Chicago. Packed to the walls with energy shots, juices, teas and sodas, this year’s show featured the usual outrageous promotions (“Meet Snooki from Jersey Shore!”) and over-the-top booths (scantily clad models, immense media screens, a waterslide – yes, a waterslide. You read it right).
What a difference a year makes. Yes, most of the big beverage players were present at the 2013 NACS (National Association of Convenience Stores) Show; The Coca-Cola Co., PepsiCo, Dr Pepper Snapple, Red Bull and Monster Energy all featured the usual mega booths that attendees are used to seeing at the event. But unlike years past, the NACS show in Atlanta was notable for what it was missing: many of the natural and functional brands that we saw in 2012.
Whether a first-time attendee or grizzled veteran of Natural Products Expo West, there was a singular feeling felt throughout: the 2013 show was simply mind-boggling in size and scale. Within the cavernous halls of the Anaheim Convention Center, a keen sense of excitement and opportunity filled the air as beverage companies, retailers, distributors and investors looked to take advantage of the rising tide of consumer demand for natural products.
Despite the emergence of natural and better-for-you beverages in the c-store channel, in part two of our video recap of the 2012 National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) show, the editorial team discusses how a “back to basics” sensibility was evident throughout the event.
Here are the final three presentations from New Beverage Showdown 2: Runa, 82Go, and the winner of the competition, Coco Café.…
Beverage entrepreneurs love to tweak their brands, overhauling packaging and marketing with abandon. But it’s hard to make the changes without a direct objective.
Not so for Honeydrop Beverages – a brand of honey-sweetened juices and teas – which went into the redesign process with a clear objective: while the company had found some success within the natural foods channel, founder and CEO David Luks knew that greater growth would require an eventual transition into the mainstream market. Luks understood that a new look had to precede such a move.