Ray Latif

Posts by Ray Latif

PepsiCo Pulls Stubborn Soda and Caleb’s Kola Because of Sugar Mixup

Last week PepsiCo removed bottled Stubborn Soda and Caleb’s Kola products from the market after discovering recent batches were inadvertently made with beet sugar. The craft sodas are normally formulated with Fair Trade Certified cane sugar and the gaffe was the result of a supplier error, according to the company.

BevNET Podcast Ep. 53: “Artificial Intelligence Will Automate The Simple”

Last week BevNET sat down with IRI CEO and president Andrew Appel who discussed the global market research firm efforts to detangle and optimize an ever-evolving and complex web of sales and consumer data, why he believes that “voice is the next platform” for data collection and how IRI is expanding its use of artificial intelligence to "automate away the simple."

BevNET Podcast Ep. 52: How To Revolutionize, Democratize Healthy Food? Chew On It.

Adam Melonas has a pretty simple mission: he wants you to eat tasty, healthy snacks. The Australian-born chef and entrepreneur is the founder and CEO of Chew LLC, a Boston-based food incubator, whose primary focus is to recreate legacy snack brands from “the ground up, inventing new processes to make them more nutritious and delicious every time.”

Runa Hires Galindez as CEO, Gage Takes Role as Chairman

Runa, a maker of guayusa-based teas and energy drinks, has tapped veteran beverage executive Alex Galindez as its new CEO. Galindez, who was most recently the general manager of organic cold-pressed juice brand BluePrint, takes the reins from Runa co-founder Tyler Gage, who has a new role as chairman of the company.

BevNET Podcast Ep. 51: Ripe Opportunities to Win in Beverage

In this edition, Howard Telford, a senior beverages analyst with market research firm Euromonitor shared his thoughts on pertinent trends affecting new product development as viewed at Expo West and beyond. This podcast also includes a conversation with Michel Boissy, the CEO and co-founder of cold-pressed juice company FreshBev, the maker of the Ripe brand of juices and cocktail mixers.

Blue Island Coffee Aims For Escapism

Chris Hopkins wants to take you on a tropical vacation. His mode of transport? Coffee. A longtime beverage sales executive, Hopkins recently launched Blue Island Coffee, a brand designed to carry consumers “away from their daily routine through coffee innovation.”

Expo West 2017 Video: Dairy Alternative and Nut Milk Trends

In this video, BevNET’s John Craven and Ray Latif examine current trends in the dairy alternative category through the lens of the product developments on display at the recently-concluded Natural Products Expo West 2017.

Expo West Video: Uncle Matt’s Organic Doubles Down on Function

At Natural Products Expo West 2017, organic juice stalwart Uncle Matt’s continued its foray into functional beverages with the debut of a new Organic Energy juice that is formulated with organic coffeeberry and ashwagandha, and extended its probiotic water line with two new varieties.