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NEW YORK -- Coca-Cola is considering a ready-to-drink version of Godiva hot chocolate as part of its expanded partnership with Campbell Soup Co., reported Brandweek, sister publication to Convenience Store News.
Godiva, which is owned by Campbell, is looking at putting the hot chocolate in the same microwaveable packaging as Campbell's Soup at Hand.
"We've seen with the launch of [Godiva's proprietary beverage] Chocolixir in 2005, there is potential for growth in new categories," Godiva spokeswoman Erica Lapidus told Brandweek. "It helped expand Godiva into the beverage category and let us appeal to a broader audience." She wouldn't comment on plans with Coke, and the cola company declined comment.
Last month, Campbell, Coca-Cola North America and Coca-Cola Enterprises announced that Campbell's products -- such as V8 -- would be distributed through Coke's network, starting in September.
Coke and Campbell put their heads together for the first time last year with the launch of Godiva Belgian Blends. The result: The Godiva beverage only owns 0.9 percent of the ready-to-drink coffee category, while PepsiCo's Starbucks Frappuccino and Double Shot has a combined 91.2-percent share, according to Beverage Digest.
Coke, previously not permitted to have a coffee partner because of an agreement with Nestle, earlier this year chose Caribou Coffee after the joint venture was restructured. Three flavors of ready-to-drink coffee are to be launched regionally this month.
The company is reportedly interested in purchasing the AriZona brand, the No. 1 ready-to-drink tea. It is also testing retail premium coffee and tea brands called Far Coast and Chaqwa internationally.
Coke had looked at hot drinks with Nestle, but now any product launch seems unlikely, Brandweek reported. The same goes for Luma, a nutraceutical beverage. But Coke and Nestle will continue to work together on Nestea and Enviga sparkling green teas.