Ray Latif

Posts by Ray Latif

Totally STōKed: WhiteWave Enters Cold-Brew Coffee Category

Food and beverage conglomerate WhiteWave Foods has waded into the fast-growing cold-brew coffee category with the launch of STōK, a new line of RTD iced coffees. The company quietly launched the brand in March, leading with two multi-serve offerings and recently debuted three single-serve varieties.

BevNET Podcast Ep. 4: Downloading With The Founder of Juicero

In this podcast, BevNET CEO John Craven interviews Doug Evans, the founder and CEO of Juicero, a new high-tech countertop juicing machine. Evans discusses the development of Juicero, its introduction to the market and how it fits into the expanding landscape for cold-pressed juice. He also responds to criticism about the unit’s price tag ($700) and talks about his long-term vision for Juicero.

PepsiCo Tests Heated Beverages in Boston

PepsiCo recently completed a test of warmed soft drinks and teas at approximately 12 CVS locations in the Boston area. Packaged in 7.5 oz. cans, the beverages, which included colas and teas, were displayed in a countertop warming cabinet heated to 122°F.

BevNET Podcast Ep. 3: The Office Cooler -- What Drinks Get the Love

Every week we receive samples of new drinks sent to us from a wide variety of beverage companies. Most of the products are loaded into a cooler in the front of the office and available to everyone. While some drinks fly off the shelf, others sit around for weeks on end. In this podcast, we discuss why this happens and attempt to delineate the reasons behind consumption decisions in the office.

BevNET Podcast Ep. 2: Juice Served Here, There and Everywhere

In this edition of the BevNET podcast, Alex Matthews, the co-founder and CEO of Juice Served Here, discusses the thriving market for cold-pressed juice in Southern California -- “there’s probably going to come a moment when there’s a juicery on every street corner here in L.A.,” he says -- and why he believes “staying true to your mission” will be the key factor for success among the growing range of juice companies in the region.

Core Hydration Joins Dr Pepper Snapple’s Allied Brands Portfolio

The announcement follows a successful test in which DPSG distributed Core in Northern California, parts of Nevada and western Pennsylvania beginning in September, 2015. Core president and operating manager Paul Nadel said that the goal of the trial was “to see how the two companies interacted” and evaluate potential for a larger partnership.

Beyoncé Invests in WTRMLN WTR

Beyoncé’s investment was part of a capital raise that closed in February, according to WTRMLN WTR co-founder Jody Levy. That raise included funding from CAVU Venture Partners and other undisclosed investors, however, Levy declined to offer details on the total amount of the raise and Beyoncé’s contribution, citing investor confidentiality.

BevNET Podcast Episode 1: Waste Not, Juice More

BevNET is pleased to announced the launch of a new podcast, in which we’ll be exploring current trends and timely news stories in the food and beverage business. In this first episode, BevNET’s John Craven, Ray Latif and Jon Landis discuss a growing trend in repurposing food waste, the pitfalls of cause-based marketing, a surging nut milk category and why sugar has emerged as "public enemy number one."

Distribution Roundup: Premium Water Brands Pick Up the Pace

April was packed with distribution news from entrepreneurial beverage companies spanning a range of categories. Premium water brands made significant traction this month, adding new placement at natural, conventional grocery and convenience store retailers.

Chameleon Cold-Brew Launches Cold-Brew.Org

Chameleon Cold-Brew co-founder and CEO Chris Campbell told BevNET that the new website is intended to “elevate the conversation and take a leadership position in educating the consumer for ourselves and other brands that we believe are doing it right.”

Following Civil Complaint, Neuro to Change Marketing Practices

Although Neurobrands did not admit liability, it agreed to a permanent court injunction that requires it to change its marketing practices and update wording on its labels. The company will also pay $500,000 in penalties and restitution as part of the settlement.

Sweet & Healthy: Sugar Alternatives Grow

Natural alternatives account for just 1 percent of the global market for sweeteners. However, natural beverage companies are increasingly turning to alternative sweeteners for blending with innovative and healthy formulations.