As the sparkling water and protein drink categories both continue to expand, David Jenkins, a former Olympic sprinter and founder of protein products brand NEXT Nutrition, is looking to marry the two with his latest venture.
Fizzique is a line of flavored sparkling protein water that contains 20 g of whey protein. The line currently includes Strawberry Watermelon and Tropical Limon flavors which contain 80 calories per 12 oz can and are lightly caffeinated. The line retails for $2.99 per can.
The brand launched last month and is available online via the company’s website and Amazon, and in Florida specialty retailers. According to Jenkins, Fizzique has partnered with three Florida distributors and anticipates growing its footprint to more than 1,000 stores in the specialty channel within the next few months.
“Our plan is to organically grow interest in the business and if you’ve got some clearly refreshing, clearly unique, and clearly different and resonates you’re going to get action,” Jenkins said. “We seem to be having that. It may be early to say but we’re quietly confident and have seen a lot of interest.
Fizzique is well positioned within two fast-growing categories, Jenkins said, praising brands such as LaCroix for helping sparkling water kick off as well as pointing toward the high growth in the powder, bar, and meal replacement sectors of the protein market.
Fizzique has been years in the making, Jenkins said, stemming from a homemade concoction mixing whey protein with carbonated water. After creating a proprietary process to make a completely clear protein-infused beverage, Jenkins set about securing a patent in order to avoid repeats of past beverage ventures where failure to protect his products led to numerous “knock off” imitators, he said.
“We worked for years developing and perfecting our technology,” Jenkins said. “A lot of science involved in it, a lot of tech involved in it, and it’s patented. That’s not something you come across in your Sujas, or your BodyArmors, or your Gatorades or any of that stuff.”
While the initial launch only includes SKUs with 20 g of whey protein, Jenkins said the brand is open to releasing products with different amounts and types of protein, including collagen and plant-based sources, for future varieties.
“It’s a tremendously robust platform,” he said.