Distribution Roundup: JUST Water Launches in U.K.

JUST Expands into U.K., Partners with American Airlines

Sustainably packaged bottled water brand JUST Water has launched in the U.K. with 800 Boots stores and all Whole Foods Market locations, the company announced last month. The expansion comes as the brand prepares to roll out its infused flavored water line, in addition to new distribution partnerships in the U.S.

Speaking to BevNET, JUST Goods, Inc. CEO Ira Laufer said the company sought out a local water source in Northern Ireland in order to export the brand, rather than increase its carbon footprint by shipping overseas. The spring will also serve as a sourcing hub for further European expansions next year, including the rest of Ireland and other countries within the European Union.

“It’s a momentum thing,” Laufer said of the decision to expand internationally. “Obviously the awareness is there, we’re at the forefront of making some real changes and impact when it comes to providing consumers better options and there’s a lot of attention to these matters all over the world. It resonates well with us, and our global plans as a brand are that we want to be accessible and inclusive and be everywhere, as long as we can meet the JUST criteria.”

The brand is also looking at expansion opportunities in Japan and Australia.

Within the United States, the brand has doubled its business and is aiming to triple its sales in 2019, Laufer said. The brand’s infused line is currently rolling out to Whole Foods stores nationwide; the brand will enter select Target later this month and select Publix stores in October. In January, JUST will enter CVS through a healthy beverage pilot program in 4,000 stores.

In addition to retail expansions, JUST has seen its largest growth with “Mission-Aligned Partnerships” with business-to-business sales, Laufer said. The brand has partnered with American Airlines to replace Dasani in its premium airport lounges and continues to focus on zoos, aquariums, colleges and universities, and hotels.

“American Airlines is the premiere example of growth outside the regular grocery retail channel that we’re experiencing,” said Kara Rubin, VP of brand and product strategy. “We’re finding that a lot of the hospitality, travel, and entertainment venues are coming to us because a lot of these organizations are really looking for opportunities to increase their sustainability. So American [Airlines] came to us and was very quickly receptive to what JUST has to offer and it’s just one piece of a larger sustainability initiative that they’re undertaking.”

Pervida Partners with KeHE

Virginia-based Pervida Immune, a line of pomegranate seed oil based functional beverages, has partnered with KeHE to grow the brand’s distribution in the Southeast and will soon add additional warehouses, the brand’s founder, chairman and CEO Josep Bassaganya-Riera told BevNET in a phone call this week.

“We are very excited about where we are now moving from regional scale to national scale through partnerships like KeHE,” Bassanganya-Riera said.

The brand has also added 300 Cost Plus World Market stores nationwide. The expansion more than doubles Pervida’s distribution, which included roughly 80 stores in Virginia, Bassanganya-Riera said. With KeHE, the brand hopes to expand further, particularly in the Northeast.

Pervida is also developing new flavors, including Pervida Calm made with CBD and Pervida Control, which will manage glucose levels, which are set to launch in the coming months.

“It was hard to go from no distribution at all to beginning to have distribution, as of this year, and we are fully intending to leverage these distribution channels, the natural products channels, and the DSD opportunities that we are pursuing for new products in the pipeline,” he said.

Lori’s Lemonade Expands into Cost Plus World Market

Lori’s Original Lemonade will launch in select Cost Plus World Market stores nationwide this month, according to a press release. The release did not specify how many stores the brand would be available in.

“We are so excited that our lemonades will now be in the Cost Plus World Market Stores,” founder Lori Volk said in the release. “Now, our organic, unique infused lemonades will be available for customers in areas we have not yet been able to reach.”

The a2 Milk Company Enters Costco

The a2 Milk Company, maker of dairy milk products that only contain the a2 protein, have signed an exclusive distribution agreement to sell three-packs in Costco stores in the Southeast region, according to a press release.

The expansion increases the Australia-based brand’s U.S. presence, which now includes more than 6,000 retail locations, including Walmart, Wegmans, Stop & Shop, Giant Carlisle, Giant Landover, Whole Foods Market, Market Basket, Sprouts, Safeway, King Soopers, Target, Ralphs, Publix, ShopRite, and The Fresh Market.

“The a2 Milk Company has an outstanding partner in Costco, one of the largest retailers in the world with an extraordinary track record of innovation and growth,” said Blake Waltrip, U.S. CEO of The a2 Milk Company, in the release. “The belief in the power of our product by a member-only and respected retailer like Costco further validates the a2 Milk brand proposition and brings us yet another step closer to bringing the American consumer back to real dairy.”