As in previous years, functional beverages were prominently featured at Natural Products Expo West 2017, with brands continuing to explore and integrate adaptogenic ingredients, such as turmeric, ashwagandha and reishi mushroom into natural, health-boosting offerings. In introducing a redesigned logo and three new additions to its line of organic “super herb” powered elixirs and protein drinks, REBBL continued to push the category forward with new innovations and a mission-driven brand identity.
Speaking with BevNET, founder Palo Hawken said that his brand sees the launch of the new addition to its core line, Turmeric Lemon Tart, as an opportunity to bring the ingredient beyond its natural consumer base and into the mainstream with a fruity, high-fat beverage that “tastes basically like lemon meringue pie.” Also debuting at the show were two new coffee-based varieties, Cold-Brew Coffee Protein and Reshi Cold-Brew. “For us, the consumer is really telling us how much to invest in coffee,” he said, noting that the protein-enhanced SKU has been the best seller amongst the three new products.
Looking ahead to the company’s future, CEO Sheryl O’Loughlin told BevNET that the $10 million round of investment led by Boulder Investment Group Reprise (BIGR) in late 2016 would help REBBL to continue pursuing expansion and innovation. “We will start to expand into other conventional retailers that get it and support the functional space in a very powerful way,” she said, calling 2017 a “huge year” for the brand.
In this video interview, O’Loughlin and Hawken discuss how REBBL educates consumers about adaptogenic ingredients, its efforts to support sustainable agriculture, and the brand’s greater mission to go beyond “super herbs” and become, as Hawken says, “the explorers and the offerers of the world’s greatest ingredients.”