Suja has rebranded its mainstream-oriented line of high pressure processed (HPP) juices and smoothies, dropping the word “Essentials” from its labels and more prominently calling out the products’ organic formulation and ingredients.
Launched in 2014 as a sub-line to Suja’s “Classic” set, Essentials was designed to be a scale driver for the brand, crafted with a formulation and price point that would appeal to a broad base of consumers. Packaged in 12 oz. bottles that retail for $3.99, the juices are now distributed nationally at conventional and mass retailers, including Kroger, Target, Safeway and Publix. Suja vice president of marketing Heather MacNeil said that the products have become the majority of company revenue and “essentially the single biggest touch point for our brand [and] for our consumers.”
In developing the new look, MacNeil said that the company wanted to move away from a depiction of the products as part of a sub-line, noting that most consumers refer to the juices simply as “Suja.”
“We wanted to make sure that that product experience and that touch point with our brand really represented everything that Suja is, not like it represented the sub-line of the brand,” MacNeil said. “In not wanting it to be a sub-line, we felt like calling it Essentials really didn’t make a ton of sense. There weren’t a lot of consumers using that language… so we felt like the Essentials messaging really wasn’t important anymore.”
MacNeil said that Suja’s decision to increase the font size and raise the hierarchy of “organic” on labels came from marketing research, which indicated that the word is a
top purchase driver for the category and one of the biggest signifiers of quality of ingredients, something that the company believes “is really important to consumers in this space.”
“We’re still pretty uniquely positioned as one of the only brands that offers organic, Non-GMO Project Verified and HPP juice for under $4 in the conventional juice set,” MacNeil said. “And we really wanted to make sure that consumers are understanding that our product [is] premium to the other offerings and that it is organic and understand how it is differentiated and what value they’re getting.
The actual labels also got an update and are now slightly more transparent, something designed to highlight the juices’ colors. Suja reports that in consumer testing, the updated packaging was preferred two-to-one.
While the revamp has been in development for some time, MacNeil said that the company “sat on it for a little bit.” That changed going into 2016, as Suja is seeing significant distribution gains and putting a renewed effort behind marketing, making now “really the right time to roll it out,” she said.