Breaking: NWNA to take Nestea, Coke to In-FUZE Tea Biz, Report Says

The Coca-Cola Co. will be offering a new cold-filled RTD tea made under the FUZE brand to its distribution network after ceding the declining Nestea brand to Nestle, its partner in the fraying Beverage Partners Worldwide joint venture, according to a report in Beverage Digest.

The move would allow Nestle Waters North America to take over Nestea in the U.S., rolling it into an expanding tea platform that includes the  Sweet Leaf and Tradewinds tea brands, both of which were acquired in the Spring of 2011 as part of that companies attempt to expand beyond water into other beverage types, the newsletter also reported.

As a replacement, Coke will move FUZE, a brand known for mixed fruit, tea, dairy, and other products that it acquired from founder Lance Collins in 2007, into a line of cold-filled canned, bottled and fountain fruit-flavored teas. That will fill out Coke’s own tea portfolio with recently-purchased Honest Tea, its high-end All-Natural brand Gold Peak, and the Monster Beverage Company-owned but Coke-distributed Peace Tea.