Taste Radio Ep. 76: Bill Creelman Discusses Spindrift’s Crafty Strategy; MCT’s Moment

Episode 76 of BevNET’s Taste Radio podcast spotlights a wide-ranging conversation with Spindrift founder and CEO Bill Creelman. Recorded at Spindrift headquarters in Waltham, Mass., Creelman waxed about cutting his teeth in the beverage business and the launch, development and sale of his first company, Stirrings, a maker of premium cocktail mixers. He also discussed how the origins of Spindrift, a fast-growing brand of fruit-infused sparkling water, continue to play a critical role in the brand’s evolution and remarkable growth, why the brand is pursuing a “craft” identity in the sparkling water category, and how the company has taken a careful approach to retail partnerships and investment.

Also included in this episode: BevNET staff reporter Brad Avery and senior brand specialist Jon Landis examine the emergence of MCT oil. The pair discussed MCT’s purported functional benefits, why a growing number of food and beverage brands are infusing the ingredient into new products and how it’s being marketed to consumers. And this week’s edition of Elevator Talk, we chat with James Fayel, the founder and CEO of Zest Tea, a brand of high caffeine teas. This episode is presented by Algarithm Ingredients.

Show Notes:

1:07: Chicken Chips FTW — The hosts chat about the most interesting and innovative products that they saw at Natural Products Expo East 2017. Jon Landis talks about Wilde’s Chicken Chips and Vermont Village drinking vinegar shots; John Craven praises Forager’s Good Plant Fat Yogurt, Ithaca Cold-Crafted Hummus and 4th and Heart’s snackable butter; Ray lauds Harney & Sons’ new Nitro Tea line; Mike Schneider gives a thumbs up to Repurposed Pod’s Cacao Juice.

9:06: Interview: Bill Creelman, Founder/CEO, Spindrift — Creelman shares his background as a beverage entrepreneur, breaking into the business with cocktail mixer brand Stirrings, the launch and evolution of Spindrift and the brand’s pivot from craft soda to sparkling water.

47:48: Why is MCT Oil “a Thing” — Jon Landis and Brad Avery discuss MCT Oil, including how it’s sourced, efficacy claims and the ingredient’s place within the healthy fat trend.

1:01:14: Elevator Talk — Zest Tea is a brand of high caffeine teas designed for mental clarity and energy. We caught up with founder and CEO James Fayel at BevNET Live Summer 2017 and he shared some insight into the brand and its innovation pipeline.

Brands in this episode: Wilde, Vermont Village, Harney & Sons, Forager, Ithaca Cold Crafted, 4th and Heart, Repurposed Pod, Stirrings, Spindrift, LaCroix, Polar, Bulletproof, Zest Tea

For sponsorship opportunities, feedback and suggestions, contact podcast@bevnet.com.