Review: Vita Coco Sparkling
Covers Products: Sparkling Grapefruit, Sparkling Lemon Ginger, Sparkling Pineapple Passionfruit, Sparkling Raspberry Lime
Vita Coco Sparkling is a four-SKU line of sparkling beverages that are made with coconut water from concentrate. The product is packaged in a slim 12 oz. can and is available in four flavors: Lemon Ginger, Grapefruit, Pineapple Passionfruit, and Raspberry Lime.
In all four of the products, you’ll find an extremely simple formulation: coconut water, carbonated water, juice, and flavorings. Utilizing the natural sugars of coconut water is both on brand and on trend and this translates quite nicely to the nutrition facts panel (4g of sugars and 25 calories per 12 oz. can).
From a taste perspective, Vita Coco has done a really nice job with these. To date we’ve sampled several brands of sparkling coconut water and Vita Coco Sparkling is, at least for our palates, in a league of its own. The key difference is in how the coconut water is incorporated. In this case, it plays a subtle and balanced role that really works in unison with the other flavors. This is in stark contrast to some of the other products that have gone before it and have featured a much stronger and sometimes off putting coconut water flavor.
Looking at the individual flavors, Grapefruit and Lemon Ginger were our favorites. These two varieties are the most similar to all of the flavored sparkling water brands that utilize citrus flavors. In the case of Vita Coco Sparkling, their point of differentiation comes with the light sweetness and salty flavor from the coconut water. As a result, these two flavors seem like both the best gateway to the brand and the varieties with the greatest potential.
The other two varieties, Pineapple Passionfruit and Raspberry Lime, have slightly more assertive flavors. It’s actually pretty impressive how much flavor these products have given that they have only 25 calories and 4g of sugar. From our perspective, these products are a bit closer to Vita Coco’s flavored coconut waters and will probably appeal more to consumers who are already fans of coconut water.
Packaging is another place where they’ve done some really nice work. The slim 12 oz. can feels like the perfect shape and size for this product. Plus, they’ve made great use of the existing Vita Coco brand equity with a design that’s also clean and attractive to the eye. The arrangement of the front panel makes the product intuitive and, thanks to the use of fruit imagery at the bottom, wholesome looking and appealing to the senses.
Overall, we really like Vita Coco Sparkling. Given the underlying brand proposition of refreshment and hydration, the sparkling category feels like a good place for Vita Coco to expand. And they’ve done a really nice job out of the gate in crafting something that is both well executed and has meaningful differentiation from what’s currently out there.