Coca-Cola launches low-sugar push

By Rod Addy

- Last updated on GMT

Light colas are valued by Nielsen MAT at more than £900m annually
Light colas are valued by Nielsen MAT at more than £900m annually

Related tags Coca-cola The coca-cola company

Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP) is stepping up its innovation through four key brands, with the promise of more to come later in the year as it aims to demonstrate its healthy credentials.

The soft drinks giant aims to drive up soft drinks sales as it launches two flavours of Fuze Tea, revamped versions of Sprite and two new variants for Diet Coke and one for Coca-Cola Zero Sugar. This follows news last month that CCEP was introducing several variants of its Latin American AdeZ smoothie brand.

Already established in 40 markets and one of the fastest-growing brands in The Coca-Cola Company portfolio, Fuze Tea launched simultaneously across Western Europe and Central and Eastern Europe in January.

Black Tea Peach with a touch of hibiscus and Green Tea Mango with a hint of camomile have been the first to hit shelves.

Fuze Tea

Fuze Tea is a unique fusion of fruit flavours, botanicals, tea extracts and other ingredients that deliver a fresh, contemporary tea taste, offering a premium alternative within the iced tea category, said the company.

Backed by a £4m marketing campaign, the two variants are already available in 400ml PET on-the-go bottles as of mid-January and will be offered in 4 x 400ml PET bottle multipacks in March as part of a phased launch. At approximately 4g of sugar per 100ml, Fuze will be exempt from the Soft Drinks Tax.

Sprite Lemon Lime and Cucumber No Sugar burst on to shelves earlier this week, in tandem with a revamped look for Sprite itself, supported by £3.3m of marketing spend.

Diet Coke

Exotic Mango and Feisty Cherry Diet Coke flavours hit stores in February, as part of CCEP’s strategy to boost its lights portfolio and offer more low-calorie options to consumers, according to the company.

The move represented the first time the Diet Coke brand had introduced new flavours since 2003. The new products will feature a brand-new contemporary design, which includes images and coloured banners.

Coca-Cola Zero Sugar Peach follows what the company described as the success of the brand’s Cherry and Vanilla variants in 2017.

All the new variants are designed to tap into the growth of flavoured colas, which are increasing by 20% year on year (Nielsen MAT value sales, 52 w/e 31 January 2018), said CCEP. They also tap into the popularity of light colas, which are worth £915.5m (Nielsen MAT 52 w/e 26 August 2017).

The new flavours will be available in 500ml PET and 330ml cans in both price-marked and plain packs, 1.25ltr and 8x330ml can multipacks. A £10m marketing campaign will support the launch.

This is an exciting next step for two of our most popular brands​,” said Simon Harrison, CCEP customer marketing director. “The new additions were designed with some of the fastest-growing consumer trends in mind, and underline our commitment to offering consumers even more choice through a portfolio of light flavour options​.”

CCEP announced last month that its AdeZ smoothie brand would be returning to the UK, with vegan variants.

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