Leading Brands Launches Functional Beverages in Ball’s New Heat-Tek(TM)


@@img1BROOMFIELD, CO – Leading Brands, Inc., Vancouver, Canada, (Nasdaq: LBIX) has launched its TREK(R) Natural Sports Drinks and NITRO(TM) Energy Drinks in new 20-oz. Heat-Tek(TM) Brick polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles from Ball Corporation (NYSE: BLL).

The bottle’s unique, proprietary design eliminates the need for side vacuum panels, providing a smoother label panel that gives consumers a more comfortable grip and facilitates labeling.

“The Brick successfully eliminates the “crinkle effect” created by applying labels over side vacuum panels,” says Mike Vaughn, vice president, innovation, Ball Corporation. “More importantly, it does not require the significant equipment modification required to fill other panelless bottles in the market so it is a very cost-effective solution.”

According to Leading Brands, TREK(R) is an all-Natural Sports Drink that is sweetened with pure cane sugar, not high fructose corn syrup, and is “osmotically balanced” to allow for fast absorption by the body. NITRO TM) Energy Drinks are unique, non-carbonated beverages that pack the full punch of an energy drink and hydration at the same time.

“Ball’s Brick bottle provides a very cost-effective way for us to improve consumers’ drinking experience with a smoother, easy-to-grip label panel,” says Joanne Saunders, vice president of marketing, Leading Brands. “By offering our products in this bottle, combined with the trademark TREK(R) loop cap that allows the bottle to be easily clipped to back-packs, belts, bikes and other paraphernalia, we believe we’re giving consumers something very desirable.”

Ball’s packaging innovation team designed a unique structure for the patent-pending Brick bottle, eliminating the need for side vacuum panels, and gave it similar dimensions to Ball’s standard 20-oz. Heat-Tek(TM) bottle so it can run on the same filling lines.

Like all of Ball’s Heat-Tek(TM) bottles, the Brick is ideal for juices, teas, sports drinks, enhanced water or any hot-filled beverage filled at temperatures up to 185 degrees F. Unbreakable, re-closeable and 100% recyclable, it offers many advantages over glass bottles. The 40.5 gram bottle features a 43 mm finish to ensure a good pour.

TREK(R) Natural Sports Drinks are available in the United Stares and Canada in four flavors: Orange, Fruit Punch, Lemon-Lime and Wildberry. NITRO(TM) Hydrating Energy Drinks come in three flavors: Grape, Blue Raspberry and Red Berry.

Leading Brands, Inc. is North America’s only fully integrated premium beverage company. The Company’s unique Integrated Distribution System IDS)(TM) offers turnkey, one-stop shopping to food and beverage brand owners, including manufacturing, distribution, sales/marketing and licensing. In addition, Leading Brands produces their own line of beverages such as TrueBlue(R), LiteBlue(R), TREK(R) Sports Drink, Nitro TM) Energy Drink, Soy2O(R), Country Harvest(R) Juices, Caesar’s(R) Bloody Caesar Cocktails and Infinity(TM) Sparkling Mountain Spring Water.

Ball Corporation is a supplier of high-quality metal and plastic packaging products and owns Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. Ball reported 2005 sales of $5.8 billion and employs 15,600 people worldwide.