CHICAGO -- Energy drinks are a growing, $12 billion business, with $9 billion coming through convenience stores, according to IRI data. That opportunity has several unlikely beverage brands making their way into the category to get their share.
Here's a look at five brands moving into energy and one surprising move in the opposite direction ...
1. Sparkling Ice + Caffeine
Sparkling Ice, a sparkling-water brand known for having zero calories, is hitting shelves in test markets with a caffeine boost. Sparkling Ice + Caffeine includes 70 mg of caffeine and comes in 16-ounce cans. It is available in five flavors: Blue Raspberry, Strawberry Citrus, Black Rasberry, Triple Citrus and Orange Passionfruit.
Photograph courtesy of Sparkling Ice
Welch's has added Welch's Sparkling Plus Energy to the juice line, saying it “saw a need in the market for an energy drink that actually tastes good,” said Senior Brand Manager John Walston. The limited-release line contains sustainably farmed Welch’s juice with natural energy from organic coffee extract. It comes in Sparkling Grape and Sparkling Fruit Punch flavors for a suggested retail price of $2.19 for a 16-ounce can.
Photograph courtesy of Welch's
Fairlife LLC has released a new coffee flavor of its Core Power protein shakes that has 85 grams of caffeine in addition to 26 grams of protein. Launched this past spring, the drink comes in 11.5-ounce bottle, delivering "a great caffeine kick with a strong, bold essence, and a delicious source of high-protein nutrition that refuels the body and provides energy to do and be more," the company said.
Photograph courtesy of Fairlife
5. Kill Cliff
Known for its sports drinks, Kill Cliff launched a caffeine-enhanced version this past summer. Kill Cliff Ignite is a "clean energy drink for the tenacious warrior in all of us," according to the company. The drink, available in 12-ounce cans, is intended to be consumed for energy before a workout or before that midday crash. It "offers clean energy and hydration with a specialized blend" that includes 150 mg of natural caffeine (green tea, ginger, ginseng), B vitamins and electrolytes (potassium and magnesium at 10% daily value). The 25-calorie drinks are available in three flavors: Cherry Limeade, Fruit Punch and Lemon Berry.
Photograph courtesy of Kill Cliff
6. Red Bull
On the other side of the coin, energy-drink maker Red Bull North America debuted a new organic line in April that does not contain caffeine. Organics by Red Bull "is a range of premium organic sodas made with ingredients from natural sources," the company said. The line will include four flavors: Simply Cola, Bitter Lemon, Ginger Ale and Tonic Water. Only the cola flavor includes caffeine.
Photograph courtesy of Red Bull North America