sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on December 3, 2013 01:47 PM
If Coca-Cola and Cargill aren't on the horn already, they should be. Coke is staking the future of calorie-reduced soft drinks on stevia, and ingredient giant Cargill is staking its future in that segment on stevia-based ingredient systems.
Meanwhile, PepsiCo is approaching the future of calorie reduction in soda from a different direction. CEO Indra Nooyi recently pooh-poohed the long-term usefulness of stevia, so her company reportedly has steered toward an intriguing alternative: a new chemical called S617 that cuts the amount of sugar and high-fructose corn syrup required in beverages to obtain the same sweet taste.
One thing is for sure: Both soft-drink giants have to do something. US soda consumption last year declined by 1.2 percent, which brought the category back down to 1996 levels, according to Beverage Digest. And even diet-soda consumption has begun to hit the skids as American consumers appear increasingly concerned about artifical sweeteners and are turning away from soft drinks to alternative beverages as a whole.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 16, 2013 05:39 PM
The size and speed of the decline in consumption of Pepsi and even Diet Pepsi in the US market has taken PepsiCo by surprise. Good thing the diversified global snack giant has been able to rely on sales of carbonated soft drinks and other beverages abroad and on improving performance by its Frito-Lay snack business.
Those were among the main takeaways from PepsiCo's earnings report and executive conference call with securities analysts on Wednesday, as CEO Indra Nooyi provided some color behind a mostly positive showing of a 2 percent rise in overall second-quarter revenue, a 35 percent gain in net income including some special factors, and $900 million in productivity gains.
PepsiCo posted strong growth in Asia, the Middle East and Africa across the board and in its Americas-wide snack business. "We have performed well because our portfolio of brands are extensive and strong, our products are on trend and relatedly diverse," Nooyi said on the call. "And we have a broad geographic footprint."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 8, 2013 12:21 PM
Is this the end of soda? Cargill and its Truvia brand aren't waiting around to find out.
Capitalizing on the accelerating woes of diet soft drinks, Cargill is placing a big bet, in a new advertising campaign for Truvia, that the root of the problem for Diet Pepsi and Diet Coke is the fact that American consumers are increasingly disenchanted with artificial sugar substitutes. Truvia is naturally sourced stevia, the extract of a native-South American bush.
Stevia has begun to acquire significant traction in the non-sugar-sweetener business despite the famously expressed doubts by PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi that soda drinkers ever would really go for beverages based on stevia, which has a licorice-like aftertaste that product developers have to thwart.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on September 10, 2013 06:29 PM
Maybe it's the result of the unrelenting slide in conventional soft-drink sales. Or maybe the serendipitous byproduct of PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi's strategy for integrating snacking and refreshment experiences that used to be separate. But the company is coming up with more interesting sensory mashups these days.
For example, PepsiCo is seeking to patent a method of encapsulating scents within beverage packaging to entice US consumers with "favorable aromas" before they drink the beverage, according to BeverageDaily.com. The "aroma delivery system" would use one or more compounds encapsulated in gelatine capsules that are broken when a drink container is opened, the publication said.
"Consumers evaluate many products by the aroma emitted from the product or the container in which the product is made available," wrote the inventors in the patent, which was filed last year and published earlier this year. "Edible products, such as juices and coffee, are expected to have a fresh aroma that replicates or evokes memory of the epxected flavor of the product."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on August 15, 2013 10:47 AM
Coca-Cola continues to adjust its defensive crouch with the publication of a new ad meant to shore up consumer confidence in the artificial sweeteners in its diet drinks.
Regular Coke sales were down by 2 percent in the first half, continuing a long slide. But it turns out that it's not just sugary soft drinks Americans are growing uncomfortable about; it's diet drinks as well. Though switching to Diet Coke is a typical gambit by those who want fewer calories but don't want to give up Coca-Cola altogether, sales of the company's diet sodas actually fell 6 percent by volume during the first half, three times the rate of decline for its regular drinks.
Coke's research determined that consumer hesitance over aspartame, the sweetener in Diet Coke, is largely to blame even though the chemical sweetener has been around for decades. Still, Nutritionists and consumer advocates are raising doubts about the long-term effects of aspartame.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on July 25, 2013 01:39 PM
PepsiCo is riding high on snacks and trying not to be brought low by its soft-drink business. But that doesn't mean the company is accepting the logic behind activist investor Nelson Peltz's attempts to get PepsiCo to spin off beverages and buy snack-happy Mondelez International.
Second-quarter food revenue in the Americas grew by 5 percent for PepsiCo while beverage revenues slumped by another 2 percent. Brands including Doritos and Tostitos, by Frito-Lay, drove PepsiCo's overall domestic growth, while its European business only chugged along and revenues in Asia, Africa and the Middle East combined, both beverages and food, grew by 6 percent.
Also, more evidence surfaced this week to bolster concerns recently expressed by PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi about the future of artificial sweeteners in beverages. Larry Young, CEO of Dr Pepper Snapple, agreed in a conference call that consumers "have concerns about artificial sweeteners." His company has lowered its sales outlook for the year.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on July 1, 2013 06:53 PM
Coca-Cola is going further out on the stevia limb just weeks after the CEO of its arch-rival said that the extract of a South American bush "unfortunately does not work well with colas."
What does Coke know that PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi doesn't? She cast doubts on the long-term effectiveness of stevia as a sugar substitute in colas with her remark to analysts, even though Pepsi's use of stevia in the Australian version of its mid-calorie Next brand comprised the biggest commitment to stevia so far by either giant.
Coke's debut of stevia in a cola has been carefully planned and seems to have a few things going for it. First, it's via a new drink called Coca-Cola Life that will debut initially only in Argentina, an obesity-conscious, westernized market that also is familiar with stevia because of its long-time use in some form or another on the continent. The company said it will explore rollout of Life in other markets as well. Life will have about half the calories of regular Coke.Continue reading...
doors of perception
Posted by Dale Buss on May 30, 2013 01:42 PM
Maybe it's an opportunity to vent after answering her critics with improved performance for the flagship Pepsi brand lately. Or perhaps PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi just wanted to remind an important audience that she isn't finished with her transformative strategy for one of the world's largest purveyors of nutritionally dubious foods and beverages.
In any event, Nooyi made what BeverageDaily.com called "surprisingly candid remarks" during an address at a Sanford Bernstein conference in New York this week, touching on why everyone's all concerned about cola, why she has made such a strong play to develop new natural sweeteners and why highly touted stevia might not be the right thing for the cola market, and why the company's new "hybrid" pricing strategy is important.Continue reading...