Ray Latif

Ray Latif

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Ray is the founder, executive producer and head writer of French Oak, an online television show that gives viewers comprehensive insight into the beer, wine and spirits scene in the Boston area. A graduate of Boston University’s School of Management, Ray has also run a consulting practice on behalf of private scholarship foundations in Greater Boston for nearly a decade.

Posts by Ray Latif

WhiteWave: Sales of Silk Almondmilk Up 52 Percent in Q1

Supported by surging demand its Silk brand of almond milk products, WhiteWave Foods today reported that net sales of its North America plant-based foods and beverages platform rose by 13 percent in the first quarter of 2014. Sales of Silk Almondmilk drinks soared by 52 percent in the first four months of the year, as compared to the previous period in 2013, the company said in a statement.

The LOHAS Influence

In this new series of videos on BevNET FBU, Neil Kimberley, ‎VP of Strategy/Brand Development at Essentia Water, explains the history and origins of LOHAS (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability), and how the concept has become a key reference point in marketing strategies for natural and organic brands.

Fresh Funding: Spindrift Lands Over $2 Million in New Investment Round

With sales of big soda brands in a sustained freefall, it’s a fair guess that most would be wary of new investment in the carbonated beverage category. Yet where some see a perilous position for soda, some see opportunity, particularly when it comes to innovative brands. It’s that line of thinking that has garnered Spindrift, which produces a line of premium-positioned sodas and seltzers made with fresh juice and purées, a new round of funding worth over $2 million.

PepsiCo Eyes Summer Launch for New “Real Sugar” Colas

Marketed and packaged as being “made with real sugar,” the beverages, to be released this summer, will come in regular, vanilla and wild cherry flavors. Labeled with the nostalgic PepsiCo logo, the products appear to be taking the place of the PepsiCo’s popular “Throwback” sodas, which included limited-edition, sugar-sweetened versions of its flagship cola and Mountain Dew

Sustained Surge: Coconut Water Swells

With literally dozens of brands in a still nascent category, getting a clear snapshot of the overall coconut water segment is a rather difficult task. Instead, we decided to look at three brands in various stages of development – Vita Coco, Zola and Minoku – and how they approach sustained demand for coconut water in terms of sales and distribution strategy, innovation and marketing.

Mass Appeal: Chameleon Cold Brew Hits SuperTarget

Target added Chameleon coffee concentrates to 81 of its SuperTarget locations in Texas, Colorado, Oklahoma, Kansas and Louisiana. The products, which are priced in line with other retail channels, are being shipped direct from Chameleon’s Austin, Texas facility to Target’s distribution center in Dallas.

Milk Takes Center Stage in New Cytosport Lawsuit

Muscle Milk beverages and powders contain no actual milk, and Cytosport, which markets the brand, has been deceiving consumers for years. That’s the chief allegation in a new lawsuit filed against Cytosport, according to Law360.com, and comes nearly three years after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned the company that its marketing and labels might mislead consumers.

Honest Tea Reaches $112m in 2013 Sales; Logo Gets Refresh(er)

Everyone knows that a rolling stone gathers no moss. Yet for Honest Tea, which has been rolling in its own right, the company has had no trouble picking up a different kind of green: cold hard cash. The Coca-Cola Co.-owned tea and juice outfit racked up $112 million in sales last year and is positioning itself for similar growth in 2014 amid the launch of a new multi-serve “Refresher” line and a logo evolution that will gradually roll out across all Honest product lines.