- Taking advantage of a taste for the past and the move towards craft, Coca-Cola relaunched two craft soda brands, Hansen's and Blue Sky sodas, with updated branding and packaging, according to a news release. Coke acquired the brands from Monster Beverage last year. These products fall under Coca-Cola's Venturing & Emerging Brands (VEB) segment.
- According to VEB, craft and specialty soda comprise under 2% of total U.S. soft drink sales, but sales continue to increase.
- PepsiCo is also relaunching a soda brand, one of its cult classics, Mtn Dew Pitch Black. PepsiCo brought the product back for a limited time via a sweepstakes late last year after years of consumer demands for its return. PepsiCo said it will sell the product nationwide, exclusively at Speedway stores.
Nostalgia plays a role in Mtn Dew Pitch Black's nationwide relaunch, as it has in other soda launches and promotions in the past year, including PepsiCo's Crystal Pepsi and Coca-Cola's Surge. Tapping into nostalgia for brands that consumers drank years ago is a counter move to growing concerns about sugar and artificial ingredients in soda.
Craft and artisanal products continue to grow in various food and beverage segments, from soda and beer to cheese and chocolate. Consumers are looking for what they feel are more handmade and authentic products. Craft brands could also help offset slowing sales in segments like diet soda.