The Flow: Obama floats soda tax; BevNET declares school open


  • Beverage School: Jumpstart your knowledge – Using real-life examples from working beverage companies, as well as discussions with suppliers, branding consultants, marketing and distribution experts, as well as BevNET’s own staff, Beverage School will arm its attendees with the real-world beverage industry knowledge that can take years of trial-and-error to accumulate. Link
  • President Obama, in an interview with Men’s Health magazine, said he thought taxing soda and other sugary drinks is worth putting on the table as Congress debates health care reform. Link
  • Japanese beverage group Suntory Holdings is close to a deal to buy soft drinks maker Orangina from Blackstone Group and Lion Capital, Reuters reported. Link Following the news, the Wall Street Journal‘s “Deal Journal” blog published a history of the brand’s ownership. Link


  • Odwalla introduced its new Pink Poetry Superfood drink. Link


  • Celsius will be available this October at more than 250 Duane Reade stores throughout metropolitan New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. Link
  • Foods Across America now ships specialty and regional sodas in temperature-controlled packaging. Link
  • Reed‘s, Inc. announced that it has formed a distribution partnership with Jessup, Maryland based Beverage Network of Maryland. Link
  • AQUAMANTRA announced that Albertsons now sells the brand throughout its 262 California Stores. Link
  • Apple Rush Co., Inc. announced that it signed an agreement to license its brand Apple Rush to Apple Rush Maui, LLC for the right to sell and produce Apple Rush within the states of California & Hawaii. Link


  • A recent Pew survey shows that American voters overwhelmingly believe the federal government should be responsible for protecting the food supply, and that voters support new measures to ensure it has the authority to do so. Link
  • Mandatory deposits on water bottles are expected to start this fall in New York, while Gov. David Paterson is considering changes that would extend them to other beverages. Link
  • In her budget proposal, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm has proposed a 1¢ tax on every bottle of water sold in the state. Link


  • vitaminwater ventured into the world of crowdsourcing with the launch of a new Facebook application in which users compete to create the brand’s next flavor. Link
  • Global Community Connections, the community engagement arm of The Coca-Cola Co., launched a paperless online application system to make it simpler for nonprofit organizations to request contributions, donations and sponsorships. Link
  • Frank Cooper, chief marketing officer for PepsiCo North American Beverages, spoke at a gathering hosted by the Pittsburgh Advertising Federation, sharing a creative brief that members of the group can use to enter a competition to create a one-page PepsiCo magazine ad. Link
  • Red Bull will invade (art)ificial gallery in Cleveland to release its Gripped Canvas show of skate decks designed by Cleveland artists. Link
  • Red Bull unveiled a newly redesigned web site. Link
  • Bebida Beverages with Potencia USA announced the continued support of Dillon Oliver, a driver in the ASALMS and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
  • Neuro Brands, is the title sponsor for the 2009 Perez Hilton Presents North American Tour. Link
  • Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger relief organization, announced that it has received a donation of $125,000 from Unilever. Link
  • PepsiCo is sponsoring the Best New Artist award at the MTV Video Music Awards, and invites the public to cast its votes. Link
  • Cheerwine has launched a contest on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus to find a student to represent the soft drink on campus. Link
  • Trimwater co-sponsored an event at Nine West in New York City where members of pop band Third Eye Blind performed and promoted their new album, Ursa Major.
  • The Coca-Cola Co. selected Shakira Barrera, 19, from Englewood, New Jersey, as the fourth member of The Fantanas. Link


  • U.S. sales of Reb A will likely leap more than 50% within five years, from $455 million in 2008 (representing 35% of the global market of $1.3 billion) to $700 million, according to the report, “Stevia and the U.S. Market.” Link
  • Nearly 94 percent of Americans know recycling is good for the environment, according to a recent survey commissioned by the Glass Packaging Institute and Dr. Doyle Yoon, PhD, a Professor at Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communications, University of Oklahoma. Link


  • Mix1received mixed reviews from the Orlando Sentinel staff and the 7-year-old child of one staffer who, in a YouTube clip, initially called the drink “fantastic” before declaring it “yucky.” Link
  • In moderation, natural sources of caffeine are associated with weight loss, the treatment of asthma and headaches and a reduced risk of Parkinson’s disease, according to The Dallas Morning News.
  • WNYC aired a story comparing coconut water to the World Cup – “A huge deal in Latin America, Africa and Asia. In the U.S., not so much.” With interviews with Vita Coco co-founder Mike Kirban and Zico founder Mark Rampolla. Link
  • Big Beer looks as if it’s testing President Obama’s tolerance, according to the Washington Post. Both Anheuser-Busch InBev and MillerCoors are raising prices at the same time, during a recession and while beer demand is slumping. Link
  • Time published an article Link and slideshow Link on Guayaki‘s efforts to build a business and rebuild the South American rainforest.
  • Fortune Magazine published an interview with PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi entitled “Indra Nooyi is the queen of pop.” Link


  • Coca-Cola Enterprises said third-quarter business trends are slightly favorable and affirmed its full-year 2009 guidance. Link
  • Leading Brands, Inc. announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase program for the repurchase of up to $500,000 US of the Company’s outstanding common stock. Link
  • PepsiCo, Inc. has been notified of an unsolicited offer by TRC Capital Corporation to purchase up to 2 million shares, or less than 0.13 percent, of outstanding PepsiCo common stock. PepsiCo does not endorse TRC’s offer. Link


  • Ashley Simpson-Wentz told Late Night host Jimmy Fallon that her husband sent her a photo of her baby holding a package of Vita Coco. (The relevant segment begins around 31 minutes into the linked video.) Link


  • ZICO Beverages, LLC. hired industry veteran Jeff Seavey as Director of Sales East. Prior to joining ZICO, Seavey served as a national account manager for Coca-Cola North America’s Glaceau division. Before that, he was a customer development manager for Nestle Waters North America. He also held a position at PepsiCo from 1981 through 1991.
  • Coca-Cola chairman and CEO Muhtar Kent will speak at High Point University’s 2010 commencement. Link
  • Sambazon announced the creation of a Scientific Advisory Board. The Board will assist in communicating the accuracy of existing data stating the nutritional benefits of Sambazon organic acai. They will also develop and execute human studies examining the health impact of Sambazon acai consumption in the diet. Link


  • An employee at a Safeway store displayed some impressive stacking abilities over Labor Day weekend, recreating a scene from Super Mario Brothers with 12-packs. Link
  • The announcement that the Twin Falls County (Idaho) Fair had signed a sponsorship deal with Coca-Cola, replacing its earlier agreement with PepsiCo inspired anger in local residents, with one declaring “I’ll just stay home and drink my Pepsi.” Link
  • The Coca-Cola Company announced that it will give $6 million to Spelman College, Morehouse College, Clark Atlanta University and the Morehouse School of Medicine, all part of the Atlanta University Center. Additionally, the Company announced that $1.2 million will be given to the Robert W. Woodruff Library on the campus of the Atlanta University Center. Link