Beverage Brands Adding a Healthy Twist to Good Ol’ Summertime

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If timing is everything, then Jamba Juice, Capri Sun and V8 could have very good summers. Each brand is bringing some product and sales news to the market just in time for the traditional Memorial Day kickoff to “summer” — and the seasonal spike in thirst — with a better-for-you twist.

Jamba Juice is bringing back a “summer favorite” drink: Fruit Refreshers with coconut water, which is popular as a beverage on its own with American consumers. They’re made with fresh fruit, and Jamba is adding a new flavor this year: Watermelon Splash. The company‚ which is extending its brand in many directions these days, is also expanding its menu of smoothies and juices and juice blends for summer.

Kraft’s Capri Sun brand just launched a new Super V drink, a blend of fruit and vegetable juices that represents a significant foray into the better-for-you space by a brand that traditionally was more about flavor and refreshment than nutrition.[more]

Super V comes in the popular Capri Sun six-ounch pouch and contains a combined daily serving of fruits and vegetables — 3/4 from fruit juice and 1/4 from veggie juice — and claims to be a good source of fiber, 10 percent of the daily recommendation, as well as of vitamins A, C and E. It joins other Capri Sun entries that are tilting more in a nutritional direction these days.

“We heard from moms that they were constantly in search of fun and delicious ways to get their kids to eat fruits and vegetables,” Wilfred de Guzman, Capri Sun brand manager, said in a press release. Super V “comes to the rescue,” he added.

An emphasis on thirst-slaking, nutritious beverages already has been paying off for Campbell Soup lately. While freshly minted CEO Denise Morrison still tries to get Americans back on the soup wagon with product, packaging and marketing innovations for the company’s eponymous business line, the ever-expanding vegetable-based V8 beverage brand has been carrying Campbell.

Morrison told investors this week that beverage sales in the first quarter grew by 5 percent even as Campbell posted even overall sales of about $1.8 billion, signalling continued woes for its soup business. Campbell’s results included double-digit sales gains for V8 Splash beverages and gains for V8 V-Fusion beverages, while sales benefited from new products across the brand. And the onset of summer isn’t going to hurt V8 sales at all.

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