BevNET Magazine

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The Importance of Imports: A Look at the Import Beer Category in 2020

The mere mention of malternatives, also known as flavored malt beverages (FMBs), can conjure up certain images in the minds of consumers. But despite some outdated stereotypes of spritzy “alcopops” exclusively enjoyed by women, FMBs have doggedly remained a steadfast and growing segment in the alcohol beverage space.

2020 Natural Snack Guide

BevNET’s annual Natural Snack Guide is a directory of “better-for-you” packaged snacks and the suppliers and services companies that support those brands.

Class Acts

Companies large and small, from across all categories, have grappled with a raft of challenges unforeseeable at the dawn of 2020, from supply chain disruption to out-of-stocks at retail to delayed innovations. But for makers of kids beverages, those issues come on top of an entirely unique challenge: how to support parents and kids as the fall school semester — both in-class and remote — gets underway.

2020 Natural Beverage Guide

BevNET’s annual Natural Beverage Guide includes everything from kombucha to bottled waters and powders, plus companies that supply goods and services to those beverage manufacturers.

Clean Energy Shots Bring New Consumers Into the Category

For over a decade, 5-hour Energy has maintained its momentum as the market leader in the $1 billion energy shot category, currently holding 89% market share according to research firm IRI. While many brands’ attempts to take on the energy shot giant have spiked and crashed, “clean” energy shots have emerged in recent years, offering a better-for-you, sustainable boost that’s bringing new consumers into the category.

The Surprising Resilience of Malternatives

The mere mention of malternatives, also known as flavored malt beverages (FMBs), can conjure up certain images in the minds of consumers. But despite some outdated stereotypes of spritzy “alcopops” exclusively enjoyed by women, FMBs have doggedly remained a steadfast and growing segment in the alcohol beverage space.

2020 Functional Beverage Guide

BevNET’s annual Functional Beverage Guide lists functional brands including energy drinks, relaxation drinks, sports drinks, and much more. It also features a directory of companies that supply goods and services to functional beverage brands.

Weighing Powders, By Brick and By Click

Functional powdered beverages have long been the domain of the specialty channel, led by protein and pre-workout products for fitness minded consumers. But over the past few years, the market for functional powdered beverages has shifted, moving outside of the specialty channel into a broader marketplace in brick and mortar retail and ecommerce.

Ingredient and Flavor Trends for 2020

Making predictions about the future of the beverage industry is a dangerous game. Trust us on this one; we do it every year for our January/February issue, and we’re about to put ourselves on the line again right now. BevNET reached out to a group of suppliers, brands and industry experts to get their insights as to where the market for ingredients and flavors in beverage will be going in 2020.

Big Coffee Brews the Future of RTDs

For the major U.S. beverage brands, coffee is one of the centerpieces of their respective strategic growth plans. From cold brew colas to energy-based brews, here’s a rundown on how Coca-Cola, Pepsi/Starbucks and Keurig Dr Pepper are assembling their coffee portfolios.

2020 Cannabis Food and Beverage Guide

The Cannabis Food and Beverage Guide is a directory of packaged food and beverage products produced with cannabis, plus companies that provide goods and services to those brands. It is a who’s who of new and established food and beverage products containing CBD, THC, hemp and other cannabis derivatives.

2019 Natural Snack Guide

BevNET’s annual Natural Snack Guide is a directory of “better-for-you” packaged snacks and the suppliers and services companies that support those brands.

Kids Beverages: The Shape of Water

If this generation of kids ends up anything like their parents, they’ll be drinking a lot of water. Among other things -- hurricanes in Alabama, the death of Prince -- this past decade will be remembered as the one in which U.S. consumers, spurred on by a combination of mainly health-related factors, put down their sugary beverages and soft drinks in favor of bottled water.

2019 Supplier and Services Guide

BevNET’s annual Supplier and Services Guide is an important resource to thousands of beverage brands, natural food brands, craft beer brands, distributors, retailers, and bottlers.

“Fit” Energy Arrives with a Bang

In December 2018, a summary of monthly Nielsen convenience store data showed Wall Street analysts a curious new entrant to its energy drink category survey. Bang emerged on the scanner for the first time, sporting a gaudy 914.7% growth for the four week period, reporting $178 million in sales for the year-to-date.

2019 Functional Beverage Guide

BevNET’s annual Functional Beverage Guide lists functional brands including energy drinks, relaxation drinks, sports drinks, and much more. It also features a directory of companies that supply goods and services to functional beverage brands.

Proof Positive: A Look at Whiskey, Brandy, Gin and Other Spirits

Anytime someone mentions the American spirits market, it’s more than likely that the first thing that comes to mind is whiskey. And that, for the most part is justified. However, other categories have been aggressively inserting themselves into the conversation and whiskey, increasingly, has been ceding some of the spotlight.

2018 New Beverage Guide

The 2018 New Beverage Guide is the most comprehensive collection of non-alcoholic beverages featuring new brands, flavors, product updates, packaging and more.

Nobody’s Alternative: Plant-Based Dairy Brands Push Their Platform

As dairy alternatives continue to rise, new brands are rapidly entering the space, bringing with them disruptive innovations and unique platform propositions. But an influx also means brands have to work harder to differentiate, especially when the category still only makes up roughly 5 percent of the dairy space. So the question becomes: how do you build the platform?

Beer Battles Beyond Borders

With all of the talk of tariffs and trade wars, could imported beers end up in the crosshairs? This article takes a look into the performance of some of the leading imported beer companies and how they may, or may not be impacted by the current political climate.

The Style Council

The United States Association of Cider Makers shakes up the category with the release of its first stylistic guidelines.

Who Needs Food Anyways?

According to Michael Averbook, food and drink analyst for Mintel, the nutritional drinks segment, which includes meal replacements, is one of the fastest growing segments in the nutrition and performance drinks category.

Coffee

No Standard Uniform for Cold Brew

After 5 Hour Who’s Next

Consumers of mainstream retail outlets may not know it, but the shot category has more to offer than 5-hour Energy alone.

BevNET Best of 2013 Awards

2013 represented a turning point for the beverage industry in which dynamic new brands highlighted natural functionality and flavors

The Race to Recycle

By now, most consumers and retailers understand and approve of the idea of recycling.

Beer Goggled

Should we go all the way with the Hangover Category

Tidy Profits

By making Kids' Beverages greener and healthier, companies hop to earn a premium

Fighting Functional Myopia

FRS is still fighting it out to convince consumers that quercetin is worth its hard-to-define health benefits.

New Territory for Tea

It wasn’t slowed by the downturn, it has benefitted from health and wellness trends and has been the category into which many exciting new brands have launched and grown.

Functional Ingredients: Spike in Demand for Nutrition, Immunity Set to Continue

Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.S. in March, health and wellness products were already enjoying solid growth. But even now, as the public moves into a new phase of coping with the virus, those trends are set to continue, according to a presentation by SPINS analysts Kathryn Peters, Xochitl Javier and Jeff Crumpton at BevNET/NOSH Virtually Live 2020 in June.

2020 Supplier and Services Guide

BevNET’s annual Supplier and Services Guide is an important resource to thousands of beverage brands, natural food brands, craft beer brands, distributors, retailers, and bottlers.

Craft Beer Enters Uncertain Times in 2020 in the Face of a Global Pandemic

The industry’s slowing volume growth -- to low-single digits -- and increased competition with more than 8,000 breweries in operation in recent years now seems like a soft breeze compared to the headwinds facing breweries due to the global coronavirus pandemic that has, among other things, forced states and local municipalities to shut down the on-premise across the country, with bars, restaurants, taprooms and tasting rooms closing up in an effort to stop the spread of the COVID-19 disease.

Message in a Bottle

Taking the form of both ambitious programs and subtle adjustments, sustainability and environmental considerations are taking an increasingly prominent role in how large corporations and emerging independent brands are approaching the bottled water market in the new decade.

Beyond Basic Black: How Brands Are Innovating in Functional Coffee

For many consumers, coffee is the original functional beverage. The drink’s natural caffeine content has made it a top global commodity for centuries and in the modern era the fast-growing market for ready-to-drink coffee -- over $3.2 billion in retail sales for the 52-week period ending Jan. 15, according to market research firm IRI -- shows many consumers still like to get their energy from a cup (or can or bottle) of joe.

Coffee and Beer Brands Launch Hard Coffee Innovations

Coffee and beer brands are stirring the pot with new products blurring category lines that offer “hard” coffees appealing to a younger demographic of 21-plus consumers. Offering low ABV and a bit of caffeine, hard coffee began to grow last year as major coffee and beer makers expanded their portfolios to meet a set of consumer interests that have grown beyond traditional beer.

2019 New Beverage Guide

The 2019 New Beverage Guide is the most comprehensive collection of non-alcoholic beverages featuring new brands, flavors, product updates, packaging and more.

Sacred (Cold) Space

While dairy will remain on top for the foreseeable future, the cold case is changing today. Dairy industry leaders, however, may be more prepared for that change than anticipated.

Import Beer: Beyond Borders

It’s no wonder that some of the big brands that once ‘ruled the world’ are finding challenges re-inventing themselves to connect with Millennials and Generation Z.

2019 Natural Beverage Guide

BevNET’s annual Natural Beverage Guide includes everything from kombucha to bottled waters and powders, plus companies that supply goods and services to those beverage manufacturers.

FMBs Answer Consumer Demand

At a time when overall alcohol consumption in the U.S. is down, the flavored malt beverage (FMB) segment seems to be weathering the storm as consumer consumption trends favor flavor and the purchasing power of millennials looking for affordable luxuries continues to drives sales.

2019 Cannabis Food and Beverage Guide

The Cannabis Food and Beverage Guide is a directory of packaged food and beverage products produced with cannabis, plus companies that provide goods and services to those brands. It is a who’s who of new and established food and beverage products containing CBD, THC, hemp and other cannabis derivatives.

2019 Flavor & Ingredient Trends

Making predictions about the future of the beverage industry is a dangerous game. Trust us on this one; we do it every year for our January/February issue, and we’re about to put ourselves on the line again right now. BevNET reached out to a group of suppliers, brands and industry experts to get their insights as to where the market for ingredients and flavors in beverage will be going in 2019.

Rosé, Regionals Driving Resurgence in Cider Sales

At the National Beer Wholesalers Association meeting in September, Nielsen vice president Danny Brager delivered a simple message to attendees who stopped by his early morning breakout session: Cider is back. According to data from the firm, off-premise sales of hard cider were up 6 percent over the 52-week period ending on August 11. But if you look at the most recent 26-week period, also ending August 11, category-wide sales were up 13 percent.

2018 Natural Snack Food Guide

The 2018 Natural Snack Food Guide is a directory of “better-for-you” packaged snacks and the suppliers and services companies that support those brands.

HPP’s Hurdles: Why Premium Juice is Struggling and How it Can Push Ahead

When high-pressure processing (HPP) emerged as a force in CPG, the non-thermal alternative to heat pasteurization was heralded as a powerful disruptor in the beverage industry. Today, however, cold-pressed juice has plateaued. Speaking with industry leaders, many in the HPP and juice spaces recognize early mistakes but also paths forward.

Fat Profits! The Rise of Keto Beverages

While diet trends come and go, the rapid rise of the ketogenic diet represents a new variation on the evergreen low-carb approach to nutrition. Keto meal shakes such as Sated, Cave Shake and Bear Squeeze are on the rise.

Trading Up in Tea

Millennials are changing the way tea brands think about innovation. Experts in the space highlight attributes that are attractive to the demographic and present data to demonstrate changes in the tea category.

Premium, Organic Offerings Drive Growth In Tea

Tea continues to impress. Premium and better-for-you offerings are driving much of the growth. For years upstart brands have fueled innovation in the category...but bigger companies are catching on.

Worth a Shot

Despite the category's challenges, brands still see big opportunity in small format offerings.

2014 New Beverage Guide

BevNET.com’s 2014 New Beverage Guide provides a catalog of new products within the beverage industry.

Soda Swap

Energy Drink Takeover: Will they replace soda?

From Zima To Rita

Zima paved the way (and offered critical insights on what worked and what didn’t) for successors.

Torpedo!

How Sierra Nevada turned a new package and a new style into a remarkable weapon.

Energy Level

Has the hottest brand in recent memory finally cooled?

Miss Muffet Broadens Her Palate

Advances in protein technology, rising raw materials costs, and lifestyle changes have combined with an overall upsurge in demand

Aiming for Enhancement

Adapting to a desire for variety and convenience, a multitude of brands have altered their approach to beverages.

Shots

Small Package, Big Universe

Too Productive?

Products beyond fresh juices are squeezing into the produce section.

Frap Fighters

It might not mean much now, but there is an evolving set of Frappuccino options out there

Watered Down

Why Bottled Water Companies Can’t Shake the Doldrums

Restoring An Icon

Under new CEO Bill Meissner, Jones Soda looks to get the easy parts right.

Columns

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In natural food industry news: Sovos Brands Acquires Birch Benders; Good Karma Announces Buyout of Majority Ownership from Dean Foods; Levain Bakery Moves into CPG; Misfits Market Closes Round, Will Scale Marketplace Offering

Gerry’s Insights: Covid Cash

There’s an old journalists’ joke that the definition of “trend” is “two facts and a deadline.” In other words, we ink-stained wretches don’t always demonstrate great rigor when the presses are about to roll and an anxious editor is leaning over our desk demanding “Whatchagot?”

The First Drop: A Time to Act

The question is, what do you say? What do you do? Actions do speak louder than words, and if you’re interested in actions, what is available? As this is my column, I’ve got a few suggestions.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news: Nestlé Seeks to Sell Regional Water Brands, ReadyRefresh; Super Coffee Signs Master Distribution Agreement with Anheuser-Busch InBev; New Age Changes Name Amid Reorganization; Shaka Tea Raises $2.3 Million as Brand Prepares for National Growth

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In natural food industry news: Nestle Health Sciences Eats Up Vital Proteins; JUST Seeks New Strategic Partners; With Deal, Utz Hopes to Become National Snacking Program; Sesajal Invests in Rhythm As it Looks to Further Build Branded Business

The First Drop: Changing Lenses

In short: what we’ve learned in the first half of 2020 is that if we aren’t searching for an understanding of how any issues that we presume exist outside of our businesses are actually tied to them at the root, we’re doomed.

Pandemic Forces Conference Cancellations

With the outbreak of the novel coronavirus paralyzing the global economy, two of the food and beverage industry’s major annual trade shows, Natural Products Expo West and Summer Fancy Food Show, were forced to announce the cancellation of their respective 2020 events this spring.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In natural food industry news: Carla Vernón Departs General Mills; Three Twins Founder on Closing: 'We Made the Wrong Bet'; and KRAVE Returns Home With Sale to Sebastiani's Sonoma Brands

Publisher’s Toast: Observations from the Homefront

As I sit here at home for what has now become an eight week seige, I reflect on all that has transpired. Our world as we know it has changed forever. I have often stated that I am not tech savvy, so on the way out of the office I grabbed my 300-plus 5x8” index cards -- my contacts all -- to use to work from home.

The First Drop: Essential Choices

Every day, more vulnerabilities reveal themselves as processing plants, factories and stores become outbreak hotspots. The inability of meat processing facilities to function without putting the lives of workers at severe risk has led to mass tragedy. There is more pain to come in the summer, when picking season will mean a risky choice between needed seasonal employment and the potential for viral infection.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news: 6 Dead in Shooting at Molson Coors' Milwaukee Campus; Stone Brewing Closes Shanghai Taproom; Gordon Biersch, Rock Bottom Parent Company Files for Chapter 11 Bankrupcy Protection; and Adam Lambert to Join Roak Brewing and Dark Horse as President

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news: PepsiCo Acquires Rockstar Energy for $3.85 Billion; Spindrift Raises $29.8M in Funding Round; Humm Announces Launch of Zero Sugar Kombucha Line; and Constellation Brands Invests in Karma Wellness Water

Publisher’s Toast: A Time Like None Other

There have been so many times we’ve been tested, and have always come through prouder and stronger. We meet these challenges head-on. These are events bigger than beverages and business, so I write about my thoughts on the state of affairs today.

Risk and Reward: BevNET Live Winter 2019 Recap

Taking risks can often be the scariest -- and the most important -- component of success in business. At BevNET Live Winter 2019 in Santa Monica, Calif., beverage industry entrepreneurs discussed when and how to take the biggest leaps of faith, when to stand your ground and how brand leaders can grow on both a professional and a personal level.

Gerry’s Insights: Are We Warming Up to the Cold Chain – Or is the Promise Overbaked?

It’s been one of the more promising developments in beverages, inaugurated by brands like Evolution Fresh a decade ago and a flock of cold-brew players more recently: a rash of refrigerated entries that offer a shockingly vibrant, fresh taste to those who’d gotten accustomed to the pallid flavor of highly pasteurized products, along with the promise of truly delivering the promised nutritional benefits.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news: Molson Coors to cease production in Irwindale, California; White Claw maker to build $250 million facility in Arizona; Josh Landan, celebrity investors launch hard seltzer brand in California; IRI: off-premise beer sales top $37 billion in 2019; Reyes to acquire Claypool Distributing in California

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news: Califia lands $225M Series D Round led by Qatar Investment Authority; Borden Dairy Co. files for bankruptcy; Oatly kicks off 2020 with a Starbucks partnership; Dyla Brands is running concentrate, powder Mix business for KDP; Olipop raises $10M in Series A Round; and Purity Organic acquires Dunn's River Brands

The First Drop: The Highest, Best Use Standard

So many of the brands we see these days seem to emerge, at least in their founding stories, from kitchen tinkering or from an idea encouraged by friends or some riff on a grandmother’s recipe. It’s strange, though: I could swear that a good subset of those brands also seem to evolve just when a grandmother’s old kitchen formula happens to correlate with an emerging beverage category that’s attracting a little bit of investment.

Natural Products Expo East 2019 Review

The Natural Products Expo East trade show graced the Baltimore Convention Center one last time in 2019, ahead of the event’s relocation to Philadelphia next year.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In natural food industry news: Misfit pivots from juices to meat to save the planet; VMG to go retail with Velocity Snack Brands launch, acquires Popchips

Publisher’s Toast: Springing Forward into Fall

Fall is a great time to assess what has happened in the marketplace. This has been a busy time on many fronts. First, the pace of launches has gone unabated. CBD has garnered the lion’s share of coverage, leading the charge of new brands crossing our desks.

Gerry’s Insights: Fall Excitement

As we head into the fall trade-show frenzy, when beverage marketers start to show their hand for 2020, I thought I’d offer up some plotlines – and datelines – that are getting my juices flowing.

BevNET Live Summer 2019 Review

As BevNET editor-in-chief Jeff Klineman put it in his opening remarks, the beverage industry is in a “time of contradictions” as category and retail dynamics are being disrupted and reinvented in real time. The speakers at BevNET Live Summer 2019, held June 12-13 at the Metropolitan West in New York City, reflected many of those contradictions; from traditional distribution and tech-enabled innovation to young entrepreneurs and experienced veterans.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Coca-Cola wins arbitration with Monster over ‘Energy’ line; New Age agrees terms to acquire Brands Within Reach; Bragg Live Food Products acquired by Investor Group

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news, Boston Beer Company acquires Dogfish Head; MillerCoors names new Hop Valley president; Smuttynose Brewing Company hires Brian Walsh as CEO; Saint Louis Brewery promotes Fran Caradonna to CEO

Natural Products Expo West Review

As expected, Natural Products Expo West 2019, held in March at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif., did not disappoint as a showcase for innovations and trends. From CBD to collagen to brain function to plant-based, beverage brands aimed to disrupt major categories with a bevy of new product launches.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Bolthouse Farms sold to Butterfly Equity for $510 million, LifeAID raises $7.7 million to support distribution growth, Monster and Bang litigation row rolls on, and Q Mixers lands a $40 million investment.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news, Craft Brew Alliance agrees to settle Kona labeling dispute, Canarchy appoints a new CEO, Stone Brewing unloads Berlin Brewery to BrewDog, Ninkasi Brewing sells a majority stake and establishes a national platform to acquire other breweries, and Constellation Brands is closing two Ballast Point locations.

The First Drop: Losing Combinations

When one trend is getting attention, the thinking goes, why not combine it with another? But while it might seem like a good idea to marry two emerging trends, and it might even be something you secretly enjoy at home, these combinations often don’t work commercially.

Winter Fancy Food Show Review

The 2019 Winter Fancy Food Show, held Jan. 13-15 in San Francisco, Calif., served somewhat as a warmup for the main event of Natural Products Expo West in March. But while many brands at this year’s show held back on product launches and line extensions, it gave the brands presenting new ideas a chance to stand out among the crowd and set the tone for the new year in beverage.

Gerry’s Insights: Don’t Rush The Bubble

It’s boom times for predicting boom times in cannabis and hemp. Stocks of many pure plays are on a tear, and financial transactions are occurring at outlandish multiples that put even Dr Pepper Snapple’s acquisition of Bai to shame. Beverage companies right now can get a lift simply by declaring their intention to enter the segment.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In NOSH news, BFG Closes Fund II to back emerging CPG brands, RX brings in new leadership and launches ‘Contrarian’ new brand, beverage vet Lance Collins launches CORE foods, Siete Closes $90M from stripes group to scale ‘audacious’ platform.

Publisher’s Toast: The Sunlight Cowboy

Today was the first day of spring. With the sun shining and my back not leaving me horizontal, I decided it’s time, once again, to take it to the streets. Over the years, I’ve spent more than a few hours hanging out in Times Square, the crossroads of the world, to check the pulse of the populace on their beverage selections. So here are some of my observations.

Brewbound Live 2018 Examines Cannabis, Company Culture and the Future of Craft

Hundreds of entrepreneurs and executives from across the beer industry gathered at the 2018 Brewbound Live business conference, held in Santa Monica, California, to discuss category health, cannabis and future product innovations. Craft Brew Alliance CEO Andy Thomas set the tone for the two-day event by asking attendees a simple question on day one: Who is really your competitor?

NOSH Live: Growing Food Tribes

While building a dedicated and loyal audience is essential for any successful CPG food brand, it shouldn’t have to come at the expense of another group. The question of how to bring consumers into new categories and products rather than freezing them out – to grow the tribe, in other words – was posed by NOSH.com editor Carol Ortenberg at the start of the first day of NOSH Live Winter 2018.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news, Pizza Hut expands beer delivery to nearly 300 stores, US beer sales top $35 billion in 2018 and Texas lawmakers propose companion bills to legalize to-go sales.

Publisher’s Toast: A Joyous Start to 2019

Last year was a strong one for the industry. The number of launches was staggering. Innovation soared, and the drive for healthfulness, functionality and efficacy was unabated. We at BevNET have been introduced to more products than we can sample, too many to review. It’s been a dynamic time. The marketplace couldn’t be stronger.

NACS Review

During this year’s NACS show, entrepreneurial brands weren’t afraid to make news. Hint Inc., Brew Dr. Kombucha, New Age Beverages, Red Bull, Nestle Waters' S. Pellegrino and Perrier, and PepsiCo's Bubly announced new SKUs.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news, Constellation Brands CEO to step down, Rogue Ales announces leadership changes, Craft Brew Alliance buys 3 beer companies, and Heineken-owned Lagunitas Brewing cuts 12 percent of its workforce.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Riff Cold Brewed Coffee raises $1M, La Croix disputes “cockroach” claims, KDP acquires CORE, Jesus Delgado-Jenkins named Outlaw Energy CEO and KDP to cut 500 jobs nationwide.

The First Drop: Is This Fully Baked

You can’t always judge the state of things by what you see at Trade Shows, but if you roll it up with the rest of the buzz from investors, media, and even the regulatory environment, it’s pretty clear that the cannabinoid compound CBD is having a moment.

Publisher’s Toast: Barry’s Nostalgic Musings

Barry takes a simple game of rock, paper, scissors and creates an analogy to the beverage industry which calls on the harmony that is required between players in the space for the whole game to work, in this throwback article from 2011.

Summer Fancy Food Show Recap

Trends including plant-based milk, matcha, CBD and craft mixers were showcased at the event, highlighting innovation in the space.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In NOSH news, Tyson tackles food waste with ¡YAPPAH!, Nom Noms World Food launches in North America, Dean Foods acquires majority share of Good Karma, Health Warrior CEO talks 'continuous improvement' and SnackNation to expand beyond offices with $12M investment.

Gerry’s Insights: New Views of On-Premise

An opinion piece that touches on how newer non-alcoholic beverage categories such as cold-brewed coffee, kombucha, drinking vinegars and cocktail alternatives hitting the market are disrupting some of the fundamental occasions that drive our beverage consumption choices.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In NOSH news, SmartSweets raises $3M to slay sugar, Cleveland Ave. backs Farmwise, how Real Good Foods is seeing 'real good' success, plant protein in bloom, CrossFit grows presence in food, Jonny Moseley goes from slopes to snacks with Iota, True Fresh and NutriFresh launch bi-costal deal.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Pepsi launches sparkling water brand and pod-based drink; Harmless Harvest and Spindrift gain funding; Sunniva Super Coffee on Shark Tank.

Manifesting a Mission: NOSH Live Winter 2017

From investors and innovators to entrepreneurs and industry veterans, CPG’s best and brightest came together for Project NOSH’s biannual business conference and TRIBALÍ Foods cooked up a victory at the Winter 2017 NOSH Live Pitch Slam

Tale of Two Cities

It was the best of shows, it was the not-best of shows. And our entire BevNET team is just catching its collective breath from the frenetic pace of attending and reporting on them, the two major fall trade shows, Natural Products Expo East and NACS.

Selling Meal Kits at the Gold Rush

Just a couple of months ago, the thought was, you gotta have a meal kit, leave your job for a meal kit company, invest, disrupt, pack, deliver, someone get me a chef to partner with! But here’s one place the meal kits are actually headed: your grocery store. And therein lies something of a lesson.

Berardi’s Rules

If Hiball does end up playing a leading role in a flourishing new energy sub-segment, it will be further vindication that a modest operating strategy can eventually have major impact.

NOSHscape

The latest food brand news including investments, acquisitions and new hires

The Unsweet Spot

All of a sudden, it seems, after decades of ignored warnings, many consumers seem to be in a desperate lurch away from added-sugar items – and those who market to them are lurching with them.

Restoring Faith

Lets face it. Beverages are a tough industry.

Rekindled Fantasies

285 columns, give or take a few. Those are a lot of thoughts.

Fashionably Late

Observations on meeting deadlines for brand messaging.

Time to Make Room

2016 doesn't mark the end of long-standing brands - it's just time to make room.

Year End Bonus

It’s getting cold out, so it’s time to stay indoors. We’ve created an expanded survey of relevant categories to keep you warm through the New Year.

Four for 2015

A harbinger of what 2016, and beyond, might bring.

Kombucha’s Great Gas Cloud

A near-avalanche of filings about the relative alcohol and sugar content of a stunningly popular beverage.

NACS Review

Energy Drinks Reinforce Ties to Convenience Channel

I Miss the Buzz

Beverage marketing just ain't what it used to be

The Price is Right

The advent of a new generation of beverages has created high-priced offerings and changed the cost structure in the industry.

Taking to the Streets (Again)

I drink a lot of beverages, to state the obvious. I’ve spent 21 years now sampling thousands of brands.

An Honest Accounting

Back in my college days, Driver hit movie screens like a tornado. I can still remember my astonishment.

BevScape

Two Court Cases Show the Way

BevScape

Vita Coco Broadens Coconut to Kids

BevScape

New First Beverage Fund Adds VEB as Investor

Too Hot for Soda

The media is rife with stories about ways that brands seeking an "urban edge" often fall off the edge

BevScape

Larry T's Brain-Twist shutting down

Resolutions for Entrepreneurs

I’ve inaugurated a new year by offering some resolutions that beverage entrepreneurs might be wise to consider.

BevScape Business

New York AG Digs into Energy Drinks and FDA Sends Durbin to Starbucks

It’s in the Cards

Somehow, I’ve been able to get by and stay connected to the industry just fine.

Big Deal!

It’s easy to get sucked into brand-equity-draining deals when you’re trying to hit a volume number or appease an important retail customer.

Bunnies & BevCos

Why the Annie's Initial Public Offering is Important to the Drinks Business

Lingering Taste

As I write this it’s been a day since the great rock drummer Levon Helm of The Band passed away, and as I write this and the memories have been flooding back sad and strong.

Bevscape Business

Ending months of waiting, the Coca-Cola Co. has finally purchased a majority stake in ZICO Coconut water

The Suits Don’t Match

It's hard to be the bearer of bad news, but thats' just what we've had to do lately.

The Exit Strategy

The love of what you create and the rewards for building lasting brands should be the end goal.

Inside RTD Tea

Look at the way newcomers Gold Peak, Honest and (Monster Beverage Co.-produced, Coke distributed) Peace Tea are performing against Nestea.

You Can Stay Nice

Sometimes the nicest folks are the ones who run into trouble with their business.

Alternative Sweetener Insights

According to research firm Freedonia, U.S. demand for alternative sweeteners will rise by 3.3% annually through 2015.

Inside Incubation

A new way toward product development, distribution and finance.

Set the Standards

The standardization of industry norms and best practices for emerging beverage categories.

GABF Takeaways

If you were looking for the next big craft beer trend at the Great American Beer Festival, you had a lot of choices.

Social Media Drives Purchasing

Restaurant consumers and individuals exposed to social content are significantly more likely to increase their spending and consumption.

Et Tu, Me Too?

With the conference season out of the way, we can move on to the most productive time of the year.

Say What?

Understanding Beverage Lingo.

Channel Check

Spotlight Category: Refrigerated Juice and Juice Drink

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news: Brewers Association Approves Code of Conduct for Members; Carbon Dioxide Shortage Squeezes Craft Brewers; A-B Adds Second Bud Light Seltzer Variety Pack; Reyes to Fold Windy City into Chicago Beverage Systems

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news: Califia Farms Names Dave Ritterbush CEO, Steltenpohl Stays as Board Member; Hint Closes $25M Round; Lemon Perfect Closes Convertible Note, Capping $11.6M Seed Round

Publisher’s Toast: Thoughts From Walks

As we have passed the threshold of Labor Day, I thought it would be a good time to look back over the last six months, a time unlike anything we have lived through before. About a month ago, encouraged by the fact that pretty much no one else was heading back in, I felt comfortable enough to start walking back downtown to my office.

Gerry’s Insights: Odwalla Swan Song

As I stroll my New York streets during this pandemic and see once-vibrant spots like restaurants, music clubs and bookstores shuttered – some of them possibly for good – it brings home the impermanence of so many things we take for granted. What was a robust city-living ecosystem has turned into a desert in the blink of an eye, at the hand of an invisible enemy.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news: Mass. Bay Brewing Sells Brand Rights in Boston to Burke Distributing; Magic Hat Exits Vermont Brewery, Production to Move to New York; Allagash to Add Sparkling Session Ale Line, Stout; Proposed Sale of Kona's Hawaii Operations Valued at $16 Million

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news: Brewers Association Survey: 46% of Craft Breweries Say They May Be Forced to Close Within 3 Months; Nielsen CGA Projects BA-Defined Craft to Lose 17.8 Million CEs If On-Premise Closed Through April; Brewers Association Shares 2019 Ranking of Top 50 US Craft Breweries

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news: Koia Lands Potential "Last Money" With CircleUp Investment; Jennifer Cue Steps Down as Jones Soda CEO; Court Approves Sale of Dean Foods Assets, Including $433M DFA Deal

Gerry’s Insights: Pondering Premium During My Homestay

So, as far as the innovation lifestyle goes, this pandemic is golden, for those of us privileged to shuffle papers from the relative safety of our homes. (Those out in the trenches, totally another story, and they certainly have my admiration and gratitude.) But what does this crisis portend for real innovation as we crawl out of the devastation?

Winter Fancy Food Show 2020 Review

When the 2020 Winter Fancy Food Show kicked off in January in San Francisco, exhibitors and attendees had little idea that, instead of the usual, measured warm-up to Natural Products Expo West, the show would become one of the few opportunities for the industry to meet face-to-face for at least the first half of the year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In natural food industry news: Hippeas Producer To Launch Two New Snacks; Once Upon a Farm Grows Up to 'Help Out the Lunch Box'; Tofurky Expands Further Into Plant-Based Dairy with Moocho; and KIND Founder Backs Cult Yogurt Brand Ellenos

Gerry’s Insights: The Rockstar Domino Falls

I’ve written before about what a glory the energy drink category has been for those who appreciate premium-priced brands that bring both margin and growth to distributors and retailers. While most emerging RTD categories from bottled water to iced tea started off that way, it’s been hard not to notice over the years that as soon as the strategic players get involved, a familiar pattern unfolds: innovation starts to wane, pricing gets aggressive and excitement at the shelf sputters out.

The First Drop: Not New, Not Normal

So many of the brands we see these days seem to emerge, at least in their founding stories, from kitchen tinkering or from an idea encouraged by friends or some riff on a grandmother’s recipe. It’s strange, though: I could swear that a good subset of those brands also seem to evolve just when a grandmother’s old kitchen formula happens to correlate with an emerging beverage category that’s attracting a little bit of investment.

Decisions and Deals: NOSH Live Winter 2019 Recap

For a conference focused on innovation, it was fitting: the first day of NOSH Live’s winter event in Santa Monica started off with a discussion around one of 2019’s disruptive center-aisle brands. Keith Belling, founder and CEO of alternative rice brand RightRice, reflected on his time at PopChips — and why he saw a unique space for healthier rice options.

Cannabis Forum Recap: A Growing Industry, Slow Regulations

The cannabis industry is complex to navigate, even if the plant is often viewed as a gateway to a simpler state of mind. To help food and drink entrepreneurs grow within it, experts presented data and insights last month at BevNET’s third Cannabis Forum, held December 6 at the Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In natural food industry news: Gathered Foods reels in over $20M more, will expand services; Little Secrets to expand offerings; and PepsiCo acquires PopCorners maker to expand portfolio of healthy options

Publisher’s Toast: The Energy to Soar

I want to talk about BevNET Live. We just completed yet another event, this time with over 850 people in attendance. It was staggering. What started as an idea a little more than a decade ago has morphed into the most powerful assembly of beverage people each year.

NACS 2019 Review

This year's annual National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) trade show once again served as a showcase for beverage innovation from some of the biggest names in the business, including Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Nestlé Waters and others.

Gerry’s Insights: Roll Over, Beethoven

“Classical marketing.” It was one of the first phrases I heard in the early 1990s after getting de-industrialized out of a reporting career covering subjects like manufacturing, robotics and electronics and making a mid-career transition to a marketing trade magazine, with zero expertise aside from the thousands of TV commercials I’d doubtless ingested over the years.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news: Danone deepens plant-based dairy holdings with Forager Project investment; Peet’s closes Coldcraft unit to focus on shelf-stable coffee innovations

The First Drop: My New #Family

History tends to make fun of those who sit on the wrong side of business evolution (note Gerry Khermouch’s column in this issue for warnings about too much adherence to tradition). We can’t stick to the old ways, or we might find ourselves on the sidelines, maybe still cheering for our teams but not in the hot seat anymore. And yet, I’m willing to risk it when it comes to LifeFuels.

The First Drop: Embrace the Flood

I’ve been skeptical about the CBD side of the cannabis equation -- between lack of consistent sourcing, metrics, extraction formats, and studies that show efficacious dosing, I’ve been worried about the premature gold rush it’s engendered.

NOSH Live Recap: Build with Purpose, Communicate, Lead

Entrepreneurs and leaders from some of the industry’s most dynamic natural food companies presented tips and strategies for authentic brand building, effective leadership and growth during NOSH Live Summer 2019, held June 3-4 at the Metropolitan West in New York City.

Summer Fancy Food Show 2019 Review

Sandwiched in between Expo West and Expo East, the annual Summer Fancy Food Show could easily fall into the shadow of those two larger events. However, this June 23-26 inside the Javits Center in New York City, there was plenty of beverage innovation to go around.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In natural food industry news, biltong launch marks start of new era at Chef’s Cut; Purple Carrot acquired; Mondelēz acquires Perfect Snacks to build out snacking portfolio; With Dirt Kitchen & CaPao, Mondelēz tests new launch strategies

Publisher’s Toast: Just For The Taste Of It

As the summer and all its glory finally kicks in after a lackluster and rainy spring, the activity of beverages goes into high gear as well. First, we hosted another fantastic BevNET Live, with 650-plus satisfied attendees. One of my favorite aspects of the conference is sampling the latest entries brought to the event. We had about 150 brands in the coolers. There were products of every category, every price point and every sort of package. That should make for an exciting time. Yet, here is where I can honestly express my disappointment.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In NOSH news, Mondelez invests in Hu Kitchen and products, Alpha Foods raises $7M in quest to become plant-based leader, KIND takes on the FDA, while Clif takes on KIND, and sans crickets, Exo founders try to revamp cereal.

Publisher’s Toast: We’re Getting Closer to Equality

Over the years, as brand marketers would stop by, extolling this or that terrific-but-no-calorie taste, I would objectively – and sometimes harshly – give my opinion that they were delusional. Today, there is a blurring of the lines between full-bodied and diet drinks, as we formulate using a plethora of sweeteners.

2019 Craft Brewers Conference Preview

The Brewers Association (BA) is doubling up in Denver in 2019, bringing both of its marquee events – the Craft Brewers Conference (CBC) & BrewExpo America and the Great American Beer Festival – to the Colorado Convention Center.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Revive launches sparkling kombucha in cans, the Monster vs. VPX battle continues, Hormel sells CytoSport to PepsiCo and KDP invests further in FORTO.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news, Brewers Association ranks Top US brewing companies, Anheuser-Busch to acquire fast-growing Cutwater Spirits, Harpoon to partner with Polar on forthcoming hard seltzer line, and Heineken USA cuts 15 percent of its workforce.

The First Drop: When Juice Blends Turn Sour

Coke and Suja, it would seem, are at a crossroads. Not quite four years after the soft drinks giant made a $90 million bet on the HPP juice company’s growth, the once glittering upstart brand is reportedly being shopped around like a Mercedes whose lease is up.

Innovation & Regeneration: BevNET Live Winter 2018 in Review

Entrepreneurship is a journey, and one with a map that is constantly being redrawn and reconfigured. The speakers on stage at BevNET Live Winter 2018 shared their personal stories of traversing the wilds of the beverage industry, as industry leaders from emerging and established companies charted different paths towards the same goal of building a thriving modern beverage business.

Gerry’s Insights: Forgotten Energy

These days it’s easy to get excited about emerging categories with breakthrough potential like kombucha, cold-brewed coffee and plant-based protein shakes. No question, they warrant the attention, but they’ve made it easy to take for granted another marvel of continuous innovation and growth, energy drinks. But this category is undergoing a wave of disruption that suggests that complacency is a long way from settling in.

The First Drop: Brands Hold the Key for CBD

Sure, they were arguing for the success of a new business that they’re all tied to, but the panelists at our Cannabis Forum in December made a great point: the most determinative success factor for proving the legal cannabis/marijuana industry overall will be the development of strong brands.

Expo East Review

Natural product brands and manufacturers from across the industry converged at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore on Sept. 13-15 for the annual Natural Products Expo East trade show. As in previous iterations, this year’s event featured a wide array of new products, line extensions, package redesigns and bleeding-edge trends.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Coke splits from Big Geyser, Bulletproof raises $40M, Diplo, Von Miller among celebs backing MatchaBar, and Humm develops a non-alcoholic kombucha brewing process.

The First Drop: Mother’s Milk

Editor-in-chief Jeff Klineman weighs in on the battle between dairy and dairy-alternatives, namely almond milk, from the perspective of his 80-year-old mother. This gripping tale of consumer confusion offers an interesting perspective on a beverage space that has been rapidly changing and continues to do so.

NOSH Live Recap

NOSH Live Summer 2018 in New York City — the company’s first-ever, two-day event — was packed with presentations on topics ranging from how to build a badass brand voice to why you should crowdfund your company. Innovative leaders from the likes of HIPPEAS, Beyond Meat, Coolhaus, Pefrect Bar and more offered insights to help progress the better-for-you natural food industry.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Revive rebrands to showcase ingredients, Califia Farms raises $50M and appoints a new CFO, All Markets Inc. acquires Runa, and leadership changes are afoot at Keurig Dr. Pepper after the recent merger.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news, cannabis-infused beverages emerge as potential beer industry disruptor, Brewers Association sells top GABF sponsorships to Buffalo Wild Wings and Jameson, newly appointed Heineken USA Chief becomes first woman to lead major US beer company, and Beavertown Brewery sells a minority stake to Heineken International.

Evolving from Scrappy: BevNET Live Summer 2018 Show Review

The leading conference for the beverage industry featured discussions with notable leaders such as Vita Coco's founder Mike Kirban, the president of Nestlés beverage division, John Carmichael, VMG Partners co-founder and managing director Kara Roell, Bhakti's CEO Sarah Bird and more.

The First Drop: Sipping at a New Dream

Beth Wilson-Parentice is leaving Sipp, the company she started plotting out in her kitchen nearly a decade ago with nothing but a gifted palate, creative ambition, and a well of determination.

Brewscape: The Latest Craft Beer Brand News

In craft beer news, Green Flash Brewing sold to new investor group, Deschutes reworks plans for Virginia Brewery, MillerCoors and Stone Brewing embroiled in trademark dispute, Laura Bell to 'step away' as CEO of Bell's Brewery.

Bevscape: The Latest Beverage Brand News

In beverage news, Dunn’s River Brands invests in Temple Turmeric, Hangover Recovery Shot raises $8M, Kombucha Dog targets four brands in lawsuits, Vita Coco launches PET bottle in 7-Eleven.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In NOSH news, recent investments and growth in the bone broth category; how better-for-you jerky is changing convenience; RX aims to become platform brand.

NOSHscape: The Latest Food Brand News

In NOSH news, Almanac Investments focuses on adding value for entrepreneurs, Lactalis buys Siggi yogurt, plant-based burger brand beyond meat raises $55M, consumers save money by shopping online

It’s Time to Rethink the Spokesmodel Standard

But what will we see if we take a view from higher up? At a time when high-profile sexual harassment and discrimination cases are emerging throughout industry after industry, is there another shoe waiting to drop in the beverage business?

Loosen the Reins

I’m seeing a bit more of that attitude in the beverage business these days, as the business takes on the degree of uncertainty and disruption that has long characterized the technology sector.

Nostalgia

"The conversation next moved to other products, early on, that tickled my fancy. So, I decided to share with you a few brands, companies and people that made a mark on me early in my beverage world."

Focus and Food: NOSH Live Summer 2017

NOSH Live in Review: Hungry entrepreneurs, investors, retailers and thought leaders were served a hearty helping of industry insights during NOSH Live Summer 2017

Bevscape

Amazon’s announced $13.7 billion bid for Whole Foods has hardened talk of large-scale disruption in the way consumers buy their groceries.

Don’t Forget The Taste

I’ve said this many times, but taste should be the main, and usually, only reason for beverage consumption.

The Brick and Mortar of Craft

These pubs return the tavern to its role dating back to the colonies as a center of community, a place for beer lovers to “rendezbrew”

Bevscape

Lots of Deals, Across Categories

A Call to the Beverage Bullpen

Red Sox fans didn’t shed tears when manager Grady Little left the team following the team’s 2003 playoff catastrophe

Study Hard

Looking for a pick-me-up, because there's too much work to do.

Knock it Off

Create your own signature, don't take someone else's

Spring Cleaning

Barry looks to his beverage collection for insight.

Slow Build to Influence

Products and systems of going to market that may once have been considered on the fringe will be have great influence over the future of the entire business.

BevScape

Two beverages discontinue distribution while Brew Hub plans $100 Million Brewing Network

BevScape

Inside the Core Power Deal; Craft vs. Crafty; Mix1 Shuts It

BrewScape

Inside Tenth & Blake and new beer deals

It's in the Cards

Somehow, I’ve been able to get by and stay connected to the industry just fine.

Bunnies & BevCos

Why the Annie's Initial Public Offering is Important to the Drinks Business

La Dolce Barry

In January, I wrote out my last tuition check, so my wife and I took a celebratory vacation to mark the end of 22 years of paying to educate our two kids.

Bevscape Innovation

It turns out that even beverage giants aren’t immune from the recent outbreak of lawsuits

Jiro’s Lessons

The film proved to be a moving experience in ways that I think are relevant to beverages, particularly the innovation space.