What's hitting the shelves? Teavana craft iced tea, reformulated Nestea, and new 'Coca-Cola with Stevia'

Starbucks & Anheuser-Busch launch Teavana craft iced tea in the US.

Coca-Cola has replaced Coca-Cola Life with 'Coca-Cola with Stevia' in Australia; while Nestea has launched a new real-brewed line as part of its brand revamp in the US. From soft drinks to cider, we take a look at some of the new products hitting the shelves around the globe. 

Coca-Cola with Stevia replaces Coca-Cola Life

Coca-Cola Australia has launched ‘Coca-Cola with Stevia’, which replaces Coca-Cola Life in this market.

The drink has been reformulated to contain half the sugar of classic Coca-Cola (compared to 35% less sugar than Coca-Cola classic in the former Coca-Cola Life).

The name was chosen to make stevia – the main feature of the product – clearer to consumers, as Coca-Cola believes Australians are already familiar with the sweetener.

Coca-Cola with Stevia is sweetened with a blend of stevia and sugar, with cane sugar coming mainly from farms in Queensland.

It contains 69 calories per 330ml can.  

Teavana craft iced tea launches in the US with Anheuser-Busch and Starbucks

Starbucks and Anheuser-Busch have started shipping their RTD premium Teavana Craft Iced Tea to grocery and convenience retailers in New Hampshire, New York, Vermont and Missouri.

The iced teas (pictured as the main image to this article) are made with Teavana tea and botanicals, are 100 calories or less, and come in four flavors: pineapple berry blue herbal tea; peach green tea; passion tango herbal tea; and mango black tea.

“With the launch of these craft iced teas, Teavana will transform the $4bn RTD tea category and enter the high growth group of premium RTD tea,” says the brand.

“While Teavana Craft Iced Teas will initially be available in grocery and convenience stores, select flavors will roll-out to participating Starbucks locations nationally later this summer, with plans for national grocery and convenience store availability in 2018.” 

The plans for the partnership, which combines Starbucks’ tea expertise and consumer engagement capabilities with Anheuser-Busch’s distribution muscle, were announced last June. 

Nestea’s new brand proposition

Nestlé has reformulated and rebranded its Nestea range in the US, with a fruit-flavored product line and a Nestea real-brewed line for the ‘true tea experience’.

The fruit-flavored tea line, which comes in three varieties (lemon, peach and raspberry) is free from high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors, flavors or GMO ingredients, and is sweetened with sugar and stevia extract.

The brewed teas are made with up to five ingredients (water, sugar, tea, rooibos, citric acid), with tea sourced from Nilgiri in India. The varieties are unsweetened black tea, slightly sweet black tea, slightly sweet black tea and rooibos, and slightly sweet organic green tea.

The launch of the premium product lines is part of the first major overhaul of the brand’s visual identify in a number of years, helping Nestea position itself in a ‘rapidly expanding, $4.5bn RTD tea category’.

Angry Orchard launches seasonal cider, Tapped Maple

Angry Orchard has launched a seasonal cider, Tapped Maple, made with a blend of American culinary apples and Vermont maple syrup.

A blend of culinary apples from the Pacific Northwest region are used: including Braeburn, Fuji, Granny Smith, Gala and Pink Lady. The base cider is described as dry, while the maple syrup adds ‘delicate balance, strong maple-forward aroma and full, round mouthfeel’.

Tapped Maple can be paired with dishes including southern fried chicken, pork tacos, and classic hearty desserts like bread pudding.

Angry Orchard has also released Angry Orchard Spiced Apple, a combination of ‘fresh apple taste with lively seasonal spices, much like a classic baked apple pie’. Both varieties are available from now until April.

Fanta’s new sensory range

Coca-Cola has launched a new sensory Fanta range in Australia. Jelly Fizz is a Fanta blended with juicy liquid jelly pieces that has to be shaken 10 times before opening to release the jelly; while Sour Tingle comes with extreme sours and tingles.

Fanta says the new line aims to shake up the soft drink category and create fun for teens.

Josh Gonski, Brand Manager FANTA, said, “What we know about our consumers is that they crave novelty and new interactive experiences.

"While disruptive innovation and fun has always been at the core of the FANTA brand, these new products are completely different to other drinks on the market.”

The new range is available in Australia in 4 x 200ml packs, while Jelly Fizz is also available in 200ml single cans. Snapchat, Facebook and YouTube are being used to target the youth demographic.

Fanta is also benefiting from a full global update of the brand’s visual update, with a new modern logo.

Scottish sugar-free soft drink

ila, a sugar-free soft drink using a blend of exotic herbs and spices for a ‘delicate, fragrant citrus flavor’, has been launched by Edinburgh company Floreana.

Offering an alternative to sugary fruit cordials, colas and flavored waters, the drink is free from sugar, caffeine, artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

Currently served in local restaurants and cafes, it is designed to be paired with foods (such as spicy foods, slightly salty cured hams, mature cheeses like Parmigiano, and lemon tart) or used in premium mixology (particularly with gin, tequila and rum).

Coldpress: ‘Nutritionally responsible’ fruity coconut waters

Coldpress is expanding its ‘cold pressure’ portfolio with a collection of 250ml fruity-themed coconut waters.

The drinks are blood orange and mandarin; cucumber lime and mint; and raspberry lemon.

Coldpress, which was founded in Australia in 2006 before introducing the product in the UK in 2011, says, “Naturally, it was only going to be a matter of time before we began liaising with everyone’s favorite super fruit – coconut - and here it is, a meticulously assembled collection of low-calorie, coconut water based drinks that ripple with rich, well-rounded tastes and nutritional integrity, a tasty trinity of HPP wizardry, sublime tasting fruit and coconut water, teeming with essential, rehydrating electrolytes.”

A bottle of blood orange & mandarin contains 25% less sugar than regular juice, 80% of daily vitamin C, and 76 calories.

Alkaline water sports drink

GameTime Hydration has launched what it believes is the first ever line of alkaline water sports drinks this month.

The four drinks, which are infused with minerals and vitamins, come as water and punch, lime and mango flavors.

“The patented product is the first of its kind to use alkaline water to keep consumers hydrated in a completely all natural and healthy drink, elevating the standards of sports drinks,” says the brand.

The drinks are aimed at health conscious athletes and students, in particular millennials and the iGeneration. They are sold in single 20oz bottles and a special edition 32 oz dumb-bell shaped bottle in select stores such as Whole Foods. 

Budget Prosecco

UK supermarket ASDA has launched ‘Progrigio’, a budget Prosecco alternative, as it anticipates price rises for Prosecco.

Progrigio is made by blending the Prosecco glera grape with Pinot Grigio: which ASDA says comes as “an answer to Prosecco fans, who have been left in dismay after warnings that Prosecco prices could rise” by 9%.

ASDA says Progrigio tastes the same as Prosecco but has been created as an affordable sparkling wine alternative. It is priced at £5 ($6.20) for a 75cl bottle with an ABV of 11%.

Coca-Cola launches fairlife Superkids

Coca-Cola’s ultra-filtered premium milk fairlife is rolling out a children’s ‘Superkids’ variety in a soft launch in the US.

Fairlife uses a patented cold-filtration process, which separates the components of milk and then recombines them while boosting the protein and calcium proportions. Superkids comes in white milk and chocolate milk.

The drinks boast 125mg DHA Omega-3, no added sugar, 35% DV calcium, 12g high quality protein to support growth and development of muscles, 120-140 calories per serve, and 8g-12g sugar per serve (depending on flavor).

Fairlife says this compares favorably to other milk or plant-based alternatives: for example, Superkids contains 12g protein compared to 8g in organic milk, 1g in almond milk, and 7g in soy milk.

Superkids is available in 52 fl oz (1.5L) bottles or four packs of 8 oz single serve bottles.

Starbucks launches Nitro Cold Brew in the UK

Starbucks is launching its Nitro Cold Brew on tap in London’s Covent Garden and will roll out the concept to 100 more stores in the summer, with the UK being the first European market to sell the beverage.

It follows the nationwide launch of Starbucks Cold Brew in 2015.

Served cold, unsweetened, and without ice, Nitro Cold Brew takes the existing Starbucks Cold Brew recipe and infuses it with nitrogen to unlock the super-smooth, natural sweetness of the coffee, which then cascades from the tap with a velvety and creamy texture that customers can see and taste,” explains the company.

The beverage is already available in North America.

Milk Stout Nitro

Colorado brewer Left Hand Brewing Co will launch Milk Stout Nitro in cans this year, adding to its Nitro series.

Milk Stout Nitro bottles were released in 2011, and the product will soon be available across the trio of draft, bottle and cans.

Nitro fans can take the beer on the go and drink a perfectly smooth and creamy Milk Stout Nitro from the can”, says the brewery.

“While a glass is always recommended for the perfect pint, cans bring a greater drinking versatility, and bring Milk Stout Nitro to your lips with the crack of a can.”

The Nitro cans will be released later this year across the brewery’s 40 states. 

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