Merging two fast-growing beverage trends, Happy Tree has launched a ready-to-drink coffee that is cold brewed using only maple water. The company, which markets a line of organic, high pressure processed (HPP) maple waters, will debut the new product at Natural Products Expo West 2016.
Produced using organic, non-GMO verified maple water and organic, fair-trade certified coffee beans sourced from Peru, Happy Tree co-founder and CEO Ari Tolwin described the flavor of the new beverage as “coffee with a hint of maple.”
The product will launch at select natural retailers as well as pop-up shops in luxury retailer Nordstrom. Dubbed Pop-In@Nordstrom, the store-within-a-store concept is “an on-going series of themed pop-up shops, each uniquely curated and housed in specially-designed spaces to encourage interaction and engagement.”
In a call with BevNET, Tolwin discussed the genesis of the beverage and how Happy Tree will market and retail the coffee. We’ve condensed the interview into a question and answer format.
BevNET: Why did Happy Tree decide to innovate with coffee?
Ari Tolwin: Everyone always talks about the beans, which are obviously very important; it gives coffee the caffeine and the flavor and everything else, but coffee is 99.9 percent made up of something other the beans, so for us to be able to take our maple water, which tastes great, and has a lot of nutrients and brew coffee in it, is really an amazing process.
BN: Will the beverage be positioned as a coffee or a maple water? Where do you envision it being on the shelf?
AT: It’s absolutely a coffee, and it will absolutely be on the shelf in a cold brew section or a cold coffee section. If someone wants to reach for our coffee, it’s giving them added nutrition, a great taste and a clean label with no added sugar. If someone wants a maple water, they’ll reach for one of our maple waters. But someone who wants a maple water for hydration doesn’t necessarily want 100 mg of caffeine.
The package design is a little different than our maple water designs to drive that point home. We really emphasize the coffee more than the maple water, relatively speaking.
BN: How much of the branding and marketing will be focused on the HPP aspect of the product?
AT: When you have limited real estate on the bottle, you have to choose what to highlight, and we don’t really talk about HPP in regards to the coffee, but it absolutely is part of what makes it an awesome product.
BN: Why is Nordstrom the right retailer to launch the coffee? What kind of consumers shop at the pop-up shops?
AT: Nordstrom is really a place that’s unique and that has the attention of really our consumers. These pop-ups are specifically designed to attract the younger generation of Nordstrom consumers, which fits even better with our target consumer.
It’s basically all of their flagship stores… in cities across the U.S. They’re going to be supporting as well with their own PR push, so it’s really to multiply the effect that we get. The other great thing about Nordstrom is that there’s amazing consumer overlap. And we always ask ourselves, ‘where can we find our consumer in somewhere other than when they’re staring at an HPP set filled with amazing products?’ Because if we’re fighting for their attention at that point, we’re not really going to win.
Here is Happy Tree’s press release announcing the launch of the coffee:
It’s not just about the beans; Happy Tree Maple Water Cold-Brew Coffee launching with luxury retailer Nordstrom and nationwide with UNFI
NEW YORK, March 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Happy Tree, innovator of the first cold pressed/HPP maple water, is poised to reinvent the cold-brew category, starting with the first ever ready-to-drink coffee brewed in only maple water. Happy Tree’s Maple Water Cold-Brew starts with our early-season organic and non-GMO verified maple water, adds organic fair-trade certified coffee beans, and is cold-brewed to create a truly disruptive delicious black coffee with the naturally occurring nutrients and sweetness of maple water.
“In less than two years, the maple water category has grown from a curiosity to a must-have for every natural-channel grocer,” explained Ari Tolwin, Co-Founder and CEO. “Maple water offers a unique springtime fountain-of-youth role in nature, with a compelling taste, nutrient and low-calorie profile. Our Maple Water Cold-Brew is a natural progression of the beauty and possibility of this amazing natural resource.”
Happy Tree’s Maple Water Cold-Brew is launching with Pop-In@Nordstrom and select natural-channel retailers across the U.S., with distribution by UNFI, KEHE and Gourmet Guru. Pop-In@Nordstrom is an ongoing series of themed pop-up shops, each uniquely curated and housed in specially-designed spaces to encourage interaction and engagement.
“A unique product calls for a unique launch,” Tolwin explained further. “Our Cold-Brew is special, and we wanted to do something different, while still showing appreciation and support for the natural-channel partners such as Whole Foods who have helped build our brand. We are excited to work with Nordstrom because they are a fantastic retailer – and have the ideal consumer overlap to enhance and support our natural-channel grocery partners.”
To sample Happy Tree’s full product line, stop by Natural Products Expo West Booth # 5593 later this week.
About Happy Tree
Launched in 2014 by brothers Ari and Chaim Tolwin, Happy Tree is the innovator of the first cold pressed/HPP, organic maple water and is the leading brand in the fast-growing maple water category in the U.S. Happy Tree is currently available at leading natural and specialty stores including Whole Foods Market and The Fresh Market, and online at Amazon.com. Learn more about Happy Tree at www.drinkhappytree.com or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.